Can Hamsters And Gerbils Live Together?

Can Hamsters And Gerbils Live Together?

Hamsters and gerbils can’t live with each other.

Since they’re so similar, it’s essential to know what kind of behavior your gerbil is likely to exhibit. For instance, both species tend to drink from the bottle tip, which is a no-no for decorative art.

So, can hamster and gerbils live together?

This is a common question from pet owners.

The answer is no, and here’s why: Pet hamsters are very territorial creatures and they instinctively defend themselves against anything they deem a threat or intruder to their territory.

Similarly, pet gerbils are very territorial as well; however, they are more passive in their defense mechanism than are hamsters.

Let’s dive in now.

Can Hamsters And Gerbils Live Together?


No, they cannot live together because they are different species that evolved to live in different environments with very different dietary needs and behavioral traits.

While they may look very similar and even act somewhat similarly in that they are social creatures, their very genetic makeup is different and their habitats are different.

They are incompatible with each other by design and nature. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t have them both as pets in your home.

It just means that you must make sure that they are housed separately and that they have separate feeding stations and litterboxes.

Though both Hamsters and Gerbils are rodents and come from the same family, they are not compatible as pets because they have evolved to live very differently in the wild and also behave differently in captivity.

If you wish to have both hamsters and gerbils together in your care, you must first make sure you understand all the differences between the two species before you make a decision about whether to keep them together or not.

Make sure they don’t come into contact or meet by accident! Both species are aggressive toward each other.

What Are The Characteristics Of A Hamster?

Hamsters are amazing creatures.

They’re cute and fun to watch. Most hamsters live for 3-4 years, so if cared for properly they’re a great pet.

However, you shouldn’t get a hamster unless you can take care of it. Hamsters need a lot of care, including daily feedings and exercise.

You also need to supply your hamster with fresh water and clean its cage regularly. Hamsters also need a cage that is at least 10 gallons and as large as possible.

Hamsters also need plenty of toys to keep them entertained. In general, hamsters are a lot of work, but they can provide hours of entertainment for kids.

What Are The Characteristics Of A Gerbil?

Gerbils are small rodents that can be brown or black in color.

They live in the wild and are also kept as pets. Gerbils have poor eyesight but are excellent at sensing their surroundings.

They can move very quickly, making it difficult to catch them in the wild. Gerbils are nocturnal animals, which means they sleep during the day and are active at night.

They are also solitary animals, meaning that they prefer to live on their own rather than in groups or families. Gerbils have poor hearing but excellent senses of taste, touch, and smell.

However, they are very sensitive to loud noises, so their environment must be quiet and calm. Gerbils are also very social animals, and they form strong bonds with other animals in their groups.

These animals are often found living in underground burrows or in tree hollows.

Main Differences Between Hamsters and Gerbils


Slow introduction allows some hamsters to eat small amounts of cat food while gradually increasing their intake of commercial hamster food.

However, this will take longer to wean the hamster off of its cat’s diet than will a single-diet method.

When it comes to Gerbils, mixing the two diets together can be fatal for the gerbil.

Some gerbils may take to eating cat food readily, while others may refuse it altogether.

This may result in warfare between the two species as they vie for dominance in the cage. So, if you are thinking about getting a hammy and a gerby as a pair, think carefully before you commit to this decision.

Even though they are territorial, they can still live together without fighting if they’re given separate areas to play and sleep and eat and sleep in their own separate cages away from each other.

Also Read:  Can Hamsters And Squirrels Live Together?

But being in the same environment is a recipe for disaster.

At the very least, the hamsters will fight to the death while the gerbil will flee for his life and may end up dying of starvation or thirst while being chased by the hamsters.


Gerbils should be housed alone in a cage that is at least 18 inches long by 12 inches wide by 16 inches high with about an inch of bedding at the bottom.

They are gregarious creatures that like company but they will tolerate being housed alone if there are no other gerbils nearby and when they’re not breeding.

Same-sex couples are perfect examples of why one should never house two male gerbils together unless they’re related.

Hamsters will thrive in a smaller cage than a gerbil will, so a hamster will be more comfortable in a cage that’s about 10 inches long by 7 inches wide by.

Hamsters are solitary creatures, so they’ll do fine if kept by themselves.

They get along well with most other small animals as long as they’re not aggressive or territorial themselves.


The diets of the hamster and the gerbil are very similar, although the feeding amounts are different.

Both animals need a pelleted diet consisting of timothy hay and pellets, but hamsters need a lot more food than gerbils do.

They need commercially available food formulated for hamsters, including a good variety in their diet to prevent boredom and other problems.

Sleeping Patterns

During the day, the hamster sleeps and the gerbil is active, although both animals are nocturnal by nature.

A general rule of thumb is that a hamster will sleep for about nine hours a day while a gerbil sleeps for about five hours every day.

As a result, the cage should be cleaned once a day or every other day when using a hamster as a pet, while the cage can be cleaned every three or four days for a gerbil.

Hamsters, on the other hand, should not be housed in the same cage as a rat because rats are predators and will hunt down and kill smaller prey such as mice, rats, rabbits, and even squirrels.

I guess they like the meaty meals too much.

Rats also carry diseases that can harm other animals in the enclosure, so you should never keep rats together with any other animal.


Gerbils are gregarious creatures and prefer to spend their time with other gerbils.

Hamsters, on the other hand, are more solitary animals and spend most of their time in their own corner or hiding in their bedding.

Hamsters are territorial creatures that often fight with each other to establish dominance in their enclosures.

If another animal is introduced into the same environment, the hamsters will fight to the death until the intruder is either killed or the surviving hamsters establish their dominance over the intruder.

Therefore, it’s very important to socialize your hammy from day one so that he won’t be aggressive towards other animals later on in life.

The gerbil need its personal space too and does best in a smaller cage.

The gerbil will get sad and may stop eating if the other animal is in his space for too long. Just like people, every animal needs his/her own space and deserves the right to be left alone for a while.

Can Hamsters and Gerbils Get Along?

Absolutely not, and hamsters and gerbils can’t get along.

They have diametrically opposite personalities, so they just won’t fit in the same enclosure. So if you have a hammy and a gerby, you’d better keep them in separate cages where they won’t fight each other to death.

Keeping them together would not only endanger the life of the other animal, but could also result in the death of both animals due to stress and overexertion from the constant fighting between them.

They often fight to the death until only one is left standing and then the winner will be chased around the enclosure until it dies of exhaustion or starvation. It’s not a pretty sight to see.

Gerbils are very energetic animals and require lots of exercise to keep them healthy, so it’s essential to exercise them at least once a day for at least half an hour to an hour.

In contrast, Hamsters dislike it if they’re not given enough stimulation and will get bored and depressed very easily.

Also Read:  Can Hamsters Eat Broccoli?

As a result, it’s important to give them as much attention as possible when you’re at home with them and spend as much time as you can playing with them.

Also Read: Why Does My Hamster Climb Its Cage?


It is preferable to keep one hamster rather than two because the companionship they need is much greater when kept in a pair than when kept alone.

Separately, they may develop behavioral problems which can become worse over time if the behavior is not corrected.

Furthermore, this environment is very stressful for them and can cause them to get sick more often and develop illnesses faster.

If they scratch each other when fighting and bite each other’s tails, it’s best to separate them from each other so they do not hurt each other while fighting.

As a result, it is preferable to have only one hamster per cage because separation between hamsters will help to avoid fights and biting each other and can reduce stress overall.

Both are fantastic pets that deserve a lot of attention and love, so if you’re planning on getting one of these little animals as a pet, make sure you’re ready for the responsibility that comes with owning one of these little bundles of joy.

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