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Can Gerbils Eat Oranges, Orange Peels or Citrus Fruits?

can gerbils eat oranges

Oranges can be a great addition to any meal for a variety of reasons. Not only are they incredibly delicious and packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber, but they are also low in calories and a great source of energy. 

This fruit is also a great source of antioxidants, which helps support your immune system. There are many ways to enjoy oranges, whether you choose to eat them fresh, juice them, or make a variety of dishes. 

However, can gerbils eat oranges? Some pet parents avoid citrus because they are toxic for cats and it’s only natural for pet owners to want to protect their pets as best as possible. 

Let’s find out whether or not gerbils can safely eat oranges along with the nutritional content of oranges and the potential risks of giving them to gerbils.

Can Gerbils Eat Oranges?

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The truth is that gerbils can eat oranges and pet owners have been known to feed them this yummy food occasionally.

However, it must be stated that oranges have a high water content and acidity, which does not make them the best food for gerbils.

If you would like to give them oranges as a treat now again, that is fine, but the water content and acidity could affect them.

The truth is that gerbils can eat oranges and pet owners have been known to feed them this yummy food occasionally. However, it must be stated that oranges have a high water content and acidity, which does not make them the best food for gerbils.

If you would like to give them oranges as a treat now again, that is fine, but the water content and acidity could affect them.

Do Gerbils Enjoy Oranges?

Gerbils do have preferences, so while yours may take to an orange, another may not like it. Also, the acidic nature of the fruit may be a turn-off to your pet. Some gerbils may like sweeter oranges rather than sour ones.

Are Oranges Good for Gerbils?

The answer is a resounding yes! Oranges are a great source of Vitamin C for these furry little critters, and the sweetness is sure to be a hit with their tastebuds. Also, oranges can be especially beneficial to gerbils when it comes to their teeth. The juicy effects of oranges can help gerbils keep their teeth in good shape, and can even help reduce the amount of plaque and tartar buildup.

 Keep in mind though, that some gerbils may be more sensitive to the acidity in the fruit than others.

 If you’re wondering whether your gerbil will enjoy eating oranges, the best way to find out is to give them a small slice and see if they like it. If they seem to enjoy it, you can give them more, but be careful not to give them too much, as citrusy fruits can cause tummy upset.

Nutritional Content in Oranges

With a variety of types to choose from, oranges are a delicious and nutritious snack for everyone! Rich in Vitamin C, folate, thiamine, and potassium, oranges help maintain a healthy immune system.

This yummy fruit also contains macronutrients such as carbohydrates, protein, and a small amount of fat. One medium-sized orange contains approximately 66 calories, 15 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of protein, and less than 1 gram of fat.

 Plus, their dietary fiber aids in digestion. The most popular type of orange is the navel orange, with its sweet and juicy flavor and signature ‘belly button’ at one end. 

Valencia oranges are slightly tarter and are preferred for juicing. Likewise, blood oranges have a deep red flesh and a sweet, raspberry-like taste. Finally, mandarins (or clementines) are a smaller, sweeter variety that’s easy to peel.

Risks of Gerbils Eating Oranges

While fruits such as oranges are often considered healthy for us humans, they are not recommended as a regular part of a gerbil’s diet.

Sugar Content

One of the main reasons gerbils should not eat oranges is their high sugar content. Oranges are relatively high in fructose, a type of sugar that can cause weight gain and dental problems in gerbils. Additionally, the high sugar content can also cause digestive problems. So, while the occasional slice of orange can be enjoyed by your little fur friend, make sure to keep their sugar intake in check!


Let’s not forget that oranges are really acidic. That’s the reason they have that nice tangy taste. So another concern with feeding oranges to gerbils is their high acidity level. The acid in oranges can irritate a gerbil’s sensitive digestive system, leading to an upset stomach and other digestive problems. Also, it has been found that gerbils who are fed oranges develop sores in the mouth which are painful for them.

Oranges Are Not a Common Food for Gerbils

In addition to these potential health risks, oranges are not a natural part of a gerbil’s diet in the wild. Gerbils are omnivorous and primarily eat a diet of seeds, nuts, and insects. Feeding them a diet that is high in sugary fruits can lead to imbalances in their diet and a range of health problems.

orange nutritional profile

How to Prep an Orange for a Gerbil’s Meal

While gerbils can eat oranges occasionally, it’s best to be aware of how to prep this fruit correctly before offering it to your pet. Here are five simple steps to prepping an orange for a gerbil’s meal:

1. Wash the fruit thoroughly with warm water. This will help remove any bacteria or dirt that may have come into contact with the orange.

2. Peel the orange and remove all of the pith (the white, spongy layer between the skin and the flesh). This layer can be difficult for a gerbil to digest.

3. Slice the orange into small cubes or wedges, making sure there are no seeds or pits.

4. Rinse the pieces again with warm water to remove any residual pith or juice.

5. Offer the orange to your gerbil in small amounts. Remember to feed in very small quantities!

Types of Citrus That Gerbils Can Consume

While gerbils can eat citrus fruits such as oranges in moderation, fruits such as lemons, limes, and grapefruits are more acidic, so they are off-bounds to your pet. These fruits do contain sugar, so too much can cause digestive problems and other health issues for your gerbil.

Oranges, though acidic, are one of the least acidic fruits, which is why some pet owners feel safe feeding this to their pets occasionally. 

Can Gerbils Eat Orange Peels?

Gerbils should not eat orange peels. The peels of citrus fruits, including oranges, are not toxic to gerbils, but they are very difficult to digest and are acidic, which can lead to can cause gastrointestinal problems or mouth sores.

In general, it’s best to avoid giving your gerbil any part of the orange peel, including the white pith that lies beneath the outer layer. Instead, offer your gerbil small pieces of the flesh of the orange, without the seeds. And as with any new food, introduce it gradually in small quantities to monitor your gerbil’s reaction and avoid digestive problems.

Can Gerbils Eat Dehydrated Oranges?

Gerbils can eat dried or dehydrated oranges in moderation as most if not all the water has been removed. However, keep in mind that it still contains some acidity and more sugar than fresh oranges.

Can Gerbils Eat Orange Seeds?

While gerbils can feed on pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds, orange seeds are not safe for them. After you enjoy the orange fruit, it might seem like a good idea to feed the seeds to your gerbil. However, you should know that seeds from this type of plant contain small amounts of cyanogenic glycosides that can release cyanide when digested. While these toxins are harmless to us, they could be deadly for a tiny pet rodent like your gerbil, so it’s best to avoid giving them any orange seeds.

Other Fruits Your Gerbil May Enjoy

Here are seven other orange-ish foods that your gerbil will love: apricots, cantaloupes, mangos, sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, and squash. These foods are packed with vitamins and minerals that will keep your gerbil healthy and happy. Just make sure to only feed your gerbil small amounts at a time, and always in moderation. With these options, your gerbil will never be bored of their diet!

How Many Oranges Can Gerbils Eat?

When it comes to feeding your gerbil oranges, it’s important to consider the different shapes and sizes of the fruit. While oranges are a delicious treat for humans, they can be a bit too big for your gerbil to handle. 

So, if you’re planning to give your gerbil an orange slice, make sure to cut it into smaller, bite-sized pieces that won’t be too difficult for them to eat. Additionally, avoid oranges that are too sour or acidic — sweet oranges are better for gerbils. Lastly, make sure you only give your gerbil oranges as an occasional treat, and not as a part of their regular diet.

How Often Can Gerbils Eat Oranges?

Gerbils can eat oranges, but not too often.

 In general, it is best to feed a gerbil oranges no more than once or twice a month. Oranges are a healthy treat for gerbils, as they contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. 

However, they also contain a high amount of sugar, which can upset the delicate balance of a gerbil’s diet. Too much sugar can also lead to obesity, dental issues, and other health problems in gerbils.

 When feeding gerbils oranges, it is essential to only give them small pieces. If you give your gerbil too much at once, they may not be able to eat it all and the uneaten pieces could attract pests.

1. Cut the oranges into small pieces and offer them as a treat.

2. Mix small pieces of oranges with other treats like seeds, nuts, or other fruits.

3. Put small slices of oranges on top of the gerbil’s food pellets.

4. Create a DIY orange-flavored lickable treat.

Can Gerbils Eat Oranges?

Gerbils can eat oranges occasionally, but they should be a staple in their diet. This is primarily because oranges contain high amounts of sugar, water, and acidity.

 To preserve your gerbil’s health, it is important to provide a well-balanced diet that consists of nutritious fruits and vegetables, grains, and proteins. Additionally, it is important to feed your gerbil fresh and clean foods and avoid processed foods.

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