I'm sure there's been posts like this before - but I can't find quite what I'm looking for - hope that's okay!
I tested positive for Covid today ( ), and of course my first thoughts were about my pets!
I know that you should try not to go too close to them, but my main issue is that my gerbils are very demanding (as in, scratching at the mesh top for hours on end until I hold them) and I don't know if they could last a week without being let out of the cage. Just to be clear, my gerbils have a decently sized cage - it's an Ikea Detolf so around 55-60 US gallons, I believe. They also have plenty of enrichment at all times. However, they are quite clingy and often have to be cuddled a couple of times a day to keep them happy! They're still young, of course.
Does anyone have any ideas of how I could deal with this? I can only use what I already have in the house of course, and I don't know how serious the risks are if I were to choose to hold them.
I also (strangely!) don't have any gloves I could use to feed them - I could probably gently tip their food from the container though so I don't have to touch their food. The water bowl and bottle could be a little trickier though as I'll obviously have to touch them quite a bit.
Since their cage is in my room and is really hard to move, I'll also have to spend the majority of my time in the same room as them, but a few meters away. Is this okay?
Thanks so much - any advice would be very much appreciated!
I have had COVID twice so far. The first time I tried not to spend too much time around my pets but the most recent time I spent quite a bit of time with my gerbils and they never seemed to get any symptoms. I believe it is possible for them to get sick but I don’t think it’s very common. An N95 mask might help reduce their exposure and washing your hands before you handle them. I hope you feel better!
Pip- August 28, 2020-May 9, 2022 ❤️
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Hi Thea, sorry for the late reply (just didn't seem to have much spare time this week somehow!).
Hopefully any symptoms have largely passed by now.
Lilyanddaisy and Pipsqueak have pretty much covered it, and yes ventilating the room will help protect them, don't freeze yourself or them though .
Oh btw, I'm not familiar with N95 masks (maybe it's a US spec?), but over here, FFP2 (or higher) masks are very effective [edit, turns out N95 and FFP2 are almost the same standards]. Although primarily their much better at preventing the wearer from getting covid (mute in your case of course!) vs the standard medical masks, I believe their better design reduces out going particles as well (vs the standard masks).
That reminds me, I've been meaning to get some myself for several months!
PS You so lucky that your gerbils are eager for your contact! Bless
That's no problem Mark, and yes I'm feeling much better now thanks (but still testing positive) I've tried not to freeze us! Although I was very hot for the first couple of days so the gerbils (poor things) were buried in their nests quite a bit as I kept it pretty cold. And my girls are fine despite me holding them most days! Admittedly I hadn't heard of the N95 masks before pipsqueak mentioned them either, but did recognise them when searched.
I am very lucky Rolo was lovely too, but she never 'asked' to be held like Pippa and Mali, she was just very happy when I did hold her. Although it's hard to tell whether they're asking for cuddles or food!