Hello, I’m sorry if this isn’t the correct category for this. I recently got two gerbils around a month ago, and today I just noticed extremely small black bugs on them and everything else. I never saw them before until now. I’ve taken two photos of the bugs and I'm just wondering if anyone knows what they are? I'm worried for my gerbils' health. I already plan on cleaning everything. imgur.com/a/8ZK04De
Eek - I never know exactly what bugs the tiny ones are - but it is quite likely that they are mites either on the hay or in the food.
Until someone else can identify them for sure - best thing is always to completely clean out the enclosure (full wash) as well as cleaning properly anything around the enclosure - including the table they are on and curtains, tablecloths etc.
Also washing for sure anything in the enclosure either now or recently as well as freezing all used food and hay etc to kill any remaining bugs.
Don't however, wash your gerbils, as this won't kill the bugs anyway and gerbils really are not very good at water. By all means give them a dust bath - and if it is mites then look at a suitable gerbil-safe insect treatment (read previous posts or speak to your vet (you might not need an appointment for just the treatment if you have recently been to the vets with your gerbils)).
After a few weeks, repeat all the cleaning out again to catch out any stragglers.
Thank you, Betty! I'm waiting on some mite spray that I could safely and gently use on Cosmo and Leo to be delivered to my house. I did some more research and it looks like it's unfortunately mites. I have some bedding and such being frozen as I type. They're getting a new play area and some new chew toys out of this since I feel horrible about it happening.