Oh, not good then! Not sure what your mean by mineral sands though, I've got Chinchilla sand from zooplus, so I assume it's ok?......
I'm sorry for confusing you further! I wasn't saying I think chinchilla sand isn't okay per se. I initially thought the Beaphar sand (and a couple of others) were okay but when I sieved them it created a cloud of dust I could see, smell and taste. There is someone on YouTube who had a similar experience with Vitakraft sand (but, a recent reviewer found it okay, so maybe that one's changed). It's trial and error. From what I gathered a year ago, and from Betty and Pim's comments here, chinchilla sand that isn't dusty, play sand that is baked (unless already sterilised) and reptile sand without calcium (Reptisand is popular) are all okay. The Zooplus sand is quartz sand which I believe is pretty much the same as many reptile desert sands. I may try that myself. I like Reptile desert sand as it's not dusty at all but, I respect and acknowledge other people have different opinions, experiences, preferences and individual circumstances.
Cuttle bones as far as I have heard from other people are deemed fine to use occasionally as they are a one-piece so gerbils aren't getting all over their coat as would happen with a substrate - obvs if they chewed it it's a different story.
However, in general I think cuttle bones aren't recommended for use for most rodents as; not only do rodents/gerbils get all their nutrients from their diet anyway; they can't eat or ingest too much of it before getting ill; and unlike birds and reptiles they don't need the extra calcium in the same way biologically; it seems a bit pointless anyhoo.
Personally, I wouldn't give one to my gerbils - even as a treat...
Thank you. I thought it would be an interesting new texture for them to chew but they didn't really like it anyway. I'll throw it away.
Yes, it is a safer form if it is in a natural thing like a cuttle bone - but it is still an excess of the mineral - and depending on how the body copes and metabolizes those nutrients it could be a bit pointless to add an excess for no reason?
Even in adult humans - adding excessive balanced calcium supplements doesn't actually make the bones any stronger - it just gets excreted?
I suppose it is like eating too many calories - you can eat them all day long and they aren't necessarily short term harmful - but your body need to get rid of them still - otherwise they have a negative effect.
Ah yea, that was nearly 10yrs ago though and johanne corrected kayjay . Btw if you reply to something that is pages back, it's worth quoting them so we know what you're referring to.
Interesting to go back to some old pages though and see the ducting going to other play areas. I've just ordered 5m(!) of ducting as I'll be using some of that to temporarily connect to a storage box which I'll be making into a sand playpen for my boys, much like some of the guys did back then.
Please note that not everything that was seen as suitable then is seen as suitable now (the soap and water was a different matter, with an obviously oblivious person trying to correct someone who was more well-informed) - if you go back through old threads on here you'll be likely to see things like wire wheels, small cages, no correction because this was more than 10 years ago, when there was less information about the possible dangers of these things than there is today. We're constantly improving gerbil care so something that seemed fine then can seem bad now. I guess that's why pet shops still sell tiny cages etc - they haven't improved their research and so are "stuck in the past". Random lecture now over... XD But I find it really interesting that this thread has gone on for literally more than a decade and there's only 8 pages :o
Slave to: Pippin, Frodo, and Sam Forever in my heart: My darling Merry I love you all so much x
Re wire wheels, I take it you meant wire mesh wheels? As wire rungs wheels have been known to be dangerous for decades, I have an old Gerbil book by Paul Paradise printed in 1980 that warned of wire rung wheels!