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Oh fuck...another gerbil thread

(40 Posts)
BuggarMeGently Fri 21-Mar-14 23:09:53

I posted,a thread a few weeks ago about mt "male" gerbil giving birth to three babies. We have since bonded, and decided to keep them.

So here's the issue: while handling the babies tonight, one shot out of my hand, and my DD may or may not have stepped on him. Since then, he has had a rattly chest, and is just lying in his house.
My questions

How do I take care of him

And the biggie,

DD went to bed upset after accidentally stepping on him. If he does die, how to diminish the guilt? I'm tempted to tell her that he was in Gerbil Hospital, and someone "adopted" him so that he would have space to get better. What do you think?

NurseyWursey Fri 21-Mar-14 23:11:50

Oh god the poor thing sad

Can you take it to the vets?

BuggarMeGently Fri 21-Mar-14 23:15:19

We actually called the emergency vets, but can't raise the � in time.

fridayfreedom Fri 21-Mar-14 23:18:40

Similar thing happened to one of our baby hamsters. He jumped from dd hand and obviously injured himself. He sadly died. Dd was a bit older , we both had a good cry and then buried him in our pet graveyard. Very sad but kids move on quickly and no she just talks about it in a matter of fact way. Just reassure her that it was an accident and that it wasn't her fault.

NurseyWursey Fri 21-Mar-14 23:21:05

How much will it be?

Isn't there anyone you can borrow money from? Maybe we could all donate some? (sorry I'm a massive animal lover)

It's just awful how people get insurance for dogs and cats but hamsters and the like have nothing and things like this can happen sad

I know it's not your fault and you must feel awful but still.

fridayfreedom Fri 21-Mar-14 23:21:13

Really can't justify an emergency vet for a gerbil, they can't do anything so would just pts. Keep it warm and comfy and let nature take its course sad

NurseyWursey Fri 21-Mar-14 23:22:58

Don't get an animal then if you aren't willing to pay fees to either a. get it better. or b. put it out of it's misery and pain.

BuggarMeGently Fri 21-Mar-14 23:25:20

I've put him in his house with loads of soft bedding. My real dilemma is, my DD is going to think she killed the gerbil by stepping on it sad

NurseyWursey Fri 21-Mar-14 23:26:49

OP you could said it's fading gerblit syndrome (sorry I know that's a made up word but I can't think of a name for baby gerbils)

You could say it's the same as fading puppy syndrome, were they're just not strong enough to live so they go to sleep and go to heaven?

Could you perhaps pretend it wasn't the one she stepped on?

Lucylouby Fri 21-Mar-14 23:31:26

You said dd may or may not have stood on the gerbil. Can you convince her that she didn't stand on baby gerbil and maybe gerbil injured himself while jumping out of your hand or from something completely unrelated? Nurseywursey, I think that's a bit harsh, accidents happen.
Op, you need to make sure you only have one gender of gerbils, I'm assuming the baby ones have been sexed accurately, so there are no more surprise gerbils to come. I'm assuming they are quite like mice and you could end up with thousands of them if you don't watch out.

BuggarMeGently Fri 21-Mar-14 23:32:11

As I said in the OP, I'm thinking along the lines of "gerbil hospital"...

BuggarMeGently Fri 21-Mar-14 23:39:04

Nursey we have had exactly a fortnight to get used to even having baby gerbils...as well as an mc and the suicide of a friend. I'm not as organised as I should be. I would be quite willing to put the poor mite out of its misery, but I just couldn't bring myself to do it... I wish I was that brave!

NurseyWursey Fri 21-Mar-14 23:55:38

Oh OP I was referring to friday not you. And I'm sorry you've had such a bad time sad maybe try my suggestion? How old is your DD?

Topaz25 Fri 21-Mar-14 23:59:23

The thing with small animals is that sometimes being rushed to the vet can be really stressful for them and then there's nothing the vet can do anyway. Emergency vets fees are extortionate. You can insure a cat or dog but not a gerbil and not everyone has £100s lying around so it's not the OP's fault she can't afford it. I would keep him warm and comfortable till tomorrow and then take him to the vet if he makes it because then it will be cheaper and he might have a chance. You could keep him warm by putting him in a container in the airing cupboard, you can offer him water in a shallow dish such as a jam jar lid.

If he dies try to convince your daughter he was sick and that it was no one's fault. Sorry you are having to deal with this.

Topaz25 Sat 22-Mar-14 00:14:46

If you do have him put to sleep by a vet check what method they use. Some vets use a heart stick for rodents, injecting directly into the heart, which is painful and stressful for them. They should anesthetise them first.

BuggarMeGently Sat 22-Mar-14 06:54:47

Well Uncle Graham the gerbil (don't ask!) made it through the night! He is crawling around, and his breathing has improved. Thank you SO much for your support. Nursey sorry I took it the wrong way blush.

VelvetGecko Sat 22-Mar-14 07:21:24

Hi OP, glad he made it through the night.
Just to re-iterate, gerbils can reproduce from around 9 weeks old, so do make sure you separate if they are mixed sex.

BuggarMeGently Sat 22-Mar-14 07:35:22

Will do. They are not weaned yet, but I have put Mallory (father) in his own cage. I feel sorry for him being all alone, but in a few weeks Uncle Graham (if he makes it) will be joining him. This is all nee to me... I rescued Mickey and Mallory from a twat of an ex, who was going to drown them because of the noise! I was told they were both male!

BuggarMeGently Sat 22-Mar-14 07:37:35

And I have pursuaded DH to let me keep the 3 babies it was steak and blow job night here for about a week!

Topaz25 Sat 22-Mar-14 12:19:08

Some vets are open for normal surgery hours on Saturday so wouldn't charge emergency fees. Ours is, check if there's one near you.

trashcanjunkie Sat 22-Mar-14 12:36:52

I'm late to this but have a little insight to share. When my ds1 was little he took his pet rat 'Alan' everywhere with him. He would stuff the poor bastard into his combat shorts pocket (the one at knee height) much to my chagrin. One day he decided to go scootering in the lane with poor Alan in his pocket (I did not know!!) and came in howling because he'd fallen off the scooter and landed on the poor rat in his pocket. The rat was in a bad way - it was laying not moving much and breathing in a rattling laboured way. I was convinced it was crushed ribs. We hurried to the vets thinking the worst. It turned out to have no injuries to the chest, and the rattling breathing was caused by concussion confused. So hopefully your little dude will be ok too.

trashcanjunkie Sat 22-Mar-14 12:37:52

Oh and Alan lived out his days in peace after that. I confiscated him from ds.

BuggarMeGently Sat 22-Mar-14 12:43:47

Trashcan grin. I'm probably a Grade A dingus for caring so much about a gerbil...even more soppy, I've just sent out a prayer request for him!

Did "Alan" have a sort of fit?

BuggarMeGently Sat 22-Mar-14 12:45:18

You guys are mint. That is all.

BurningBridges Sat 22-Mar-14 12:45:28

I love the Alan the rat story. And I've got gerbils. Please do get them sexed and segregated I think they are sexually mature at 6 weeks!

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