I have a 3-year-old gerbil named Ernie, who lately has had periods of light bleeding at his right ear. After taking him to the vet, I found out that it was no more than a sore that broke the skin against something. The week after the visit, Ernie had another cut, so I put some Neosporin on it, which seemed to help. But this morning, as I went to give him and his brother some breakfast, I noticed big splatters of blood on the sides of the cage. I found my little baby in one of the corners of the cage, with blood all over his upper right side, in his ear, down to his paws. I separated him from his brother, and put Ernie in another cage, and put some food and Bed Fluff in there for him. I don't know what to do for him, and I am so worried about him! :-( Please let me know if there is anything I can give him to make him better. He HAS been eating, and I gave him lettuce (Vitamin K) to help stop the bleeding, but I don't know what else to do. Please help me - I would really appreciate it. Oh, and I have to also note: He and his brother Bert have never fought or anything - they are the best of friends - so I don't think that it was that Ernie got into a fight or something.
Sounds like they got into a fight. Check the other gerbil and see if you find any marks on him..
Right side.. check the neck closely, usually where they bite eachother at. Splattered against the cage would make me think ball fight.
The neosporin you put on his ear might've made him smell way too different and the other attacked him. Or if it is some kind of ear tumor, the other might've attacked him cause it made him weaker or something. Did he ever walk with his ear or head titled cause that could just mean ear infection but a vet should've picked up on it. The scratches you were finding on him could've been fights they were getting into or aggressive grooming. Fights can happen at any time, regardless if they've never happened before. Something stupid like a sunflower seed can set it off even if they eat them everyday.
So.. my overall guess was it was a fight. A real fight. Not a "play fight".
sorry about your gerbil. i have had to go through an experiance like the one you went through. my gerbil didnt make it either.
how old is his brother bert? if hes to old he might not except another friend, but i belive it is a bit better to get a younger gerbil for a new friend when trying to reintroduce. but i dont know alot about gerbils, so this is just my 2 cents. i hope every thing turns out well in the end.
Thank you for the encouragement and advice. I appreciate every comment from each of you.
Bert is about 3-years-old, so I don't think that getting him a friend will help. Once Bert passes away, that little friend I got him will be lonely - then he'll die, and his friend I would get him would die. . . . I think that it would be a very hard, continuous cycle. I think I'll just play with Bert as much as possible, then parent more gerbils in the future.
If Bert is very lonely and you do want more gerbils in the future there si an option. At 3 years old and assuming hes very healthy very healthy Bert could live another 2 years. Male gerbils, even elderly ones, love pups. So the solution is get two pups of around 5/8 weeks (younger is best). Believe me he'll get a new lease of life . I have colony of 5 boys ranging from 6 months to 3 years. I recently added 5, 5 week old pups to the colony (temporarily as space is a bit tight at mo and I hope to rehome some). The old man is loving having these young wippersnappers to cuddle, baby and put in their place. I am in total agreement that putting ONE gerbil in and then having that one on its own later would not be sensible, but there is no reason for gerbils, especially males, to live only in pairs. Anyway whatever you decide good luck