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My gerbil is bloated and fat at the down and looks fine halfway up. This is weird because I don't over feed her. What's wrong?

(August 3, 2010)

Why is my gerbil fat?? This is a question we tend to ask ourselves if we notice our gerbil putting on unnecessary weight. Gerbils make the most amusing pets and very popular with children because of their constant activity. And because of their constant energetic state they are usually in good shape. But as they grow older they might end up having a number of gerbil health problems and those are just because of their growing age. If you haven’t been over feeding your gerbil and it has been putting on weight for sometime now or has put of this extra weight in just a few days, it is best that you show him to a vet at the earliest. A fat gerbil is not a common sight as these pets are very active and tend to have more muscle than fat.  Other than over feeding the main reasons that these little animals put on weight is because they might be constipated, this might tend to make the lower portion of your pet look a little bloated. This can be treated at home if you realize it early on. To counter this problem you only need to change your gerbils diet and feed it a lot of fibrous food like green vegetables and whole grains which will eventually cause bowel movements and help to relieve your pet. Also remember that as much as  your gerbil might love nuts and sunflower seed it is best to lay off them a while as they are rich in fat and can cause your pet to put on extra weight.

But if constipation is not the problem then it is possible that your gerbils health might be at risk. If there are males in your gerbil pen then there might be a possibility that your gerbil may be pregnant. It is best that you take a trip to the vet to find out. Just as with humans, animals are also prone to diseases like cancer and tumors. And sometimes these can also cause a specific area of the body to bloat up. Sometimes liver problems like enlargement of the liver or even liver failure can cause the lower part of your gerbil’s body to look fatter than the rest of it. Internal tumors in the stomach or spleen can also have the same kind of a dire effect. Usually these diseases do have visible symptoms like lethargy and loss of appetite so it is best that these should not be ignored and addressed immediately. Therefore just to be sure of what the problem is take it to you local vet. He might examine it and order for some tests to eliminate some probabilities of other gerbil illnesses.
Submitted by N M on August 3, 2010 at 06:30


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