(Closed) 6 year old + gerbil + alone for 5 mins = $350 Vet bill!!

posted 7 years ago in Pets
Post # 17
998 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Whoa……what a horrible situation. I probably would have made the same decision, but I cannot believe the tail coming off would be that harmful?!?

Post # 18
1566 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@MrsPanda99:  Probably not, but it is an interesting mental image

Post # 19
11231 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Yeah, I’m also confused about what it needed surgery for. When a lizard’s tail comes off, it grows back. No need for surgery. If the gerbil’s tail falls off the same way, there shouldn’t be any need for surgery.

Okay, I did some Googling: degloving. Evolution needs to step it up. Tail can come off, but often requires vet care. How dumb.

Post # 20
483 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I honestly think you did the right thing, mama!  Good karma is sure to follow you! Smile

Post # 21
816 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I think you did the right thing even though, I’m not going to deny, that was quite a hefty bill.  It does make sense since surgery for such small animals are quite risky.  Mind you I’m of the belief that when you bring an animal to your home, you are its complete and utter guardian; they had no say in the matter.  As such w always have to ensure to give it a good and fair quality of life (we harmed it, we take care of it).  I think this will also be a valuable lesson for your child about how delicate animals are and why we have to treat them with respect (I know it was an accident of course!) and how we may have so much srenght to inadvertently/accidently harm them.

I know for some rodents aren’t the same as dogs (although I do not see this in the same light) but what made me realize this truth is when I went to the vet with my ferret t the time.  An old lady had 2 pet rats and one was really ill.  In her eyes you could tell how much she cared and loved for that rat, just as it were her dog or cat.  So for someone, an animal may not seem to have the same “worth” as another animal; but for an owner their pet is a pet despite species.

Post # 22
980 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

It sucks that it cost so much, but you are teaching your son great lessons about responsibility and compassion. That is a way better investment than cable.

Post # 24
4522 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@Nel13:  You did a really sweet thing, we would have done the same if we found a squirrel in the same condition on the sidewalk 🙂 I do not care for humans much, but sure, I’ll spend $300+ to save a rodent 😡

Post # 25
3768 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Brookfield Zoo

Aww!  I’m so glad you paid for her surgery, I would have done the same thing.  Poor gerbil!  I’m also very glad that you and the vet explained the situation to your son so he understands he needs to be more responsible and careful with animals.  I hope she has a speedy recovery, good luck with finding someone to care for her!!

Post # 26
501 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@Nel13:  You are an awesome human & pet mama.  You taught your son a HUGE lesson, one that I’m sure will stick with him for the rest of his life – and by your description of his reaction (willingness to do more chores, etc.) this is not the first time you’ve been a gold-star parent.  Go, you!!! 🙂

Post # 27
1398 posts
Bumble bee

I had gerbils growing up and I had no idea the tail could come off!

Post # 28
34 posts
  • Wedding: May 2005

This was a great (albeit expensive) lesson for your son. A lot of children grow up don’t have the same understanding for small pets as they do for larger ones. We have two guinea pigs for that same reason, and a small frog. My children can’t play with the piggies, they were really well bonded when we got them and didn’t care that we wanted to bond with them too. But the pigs live in our livingroom, and the girls help with their care. Our frog lives in a tank with his pet fish (yes it is definately the frogs fish)… and the girls help me feed them and care for the tank. We have larger animals too, but I think sometimes people can think of smaller animals as decoration rather than little lives that you take on resposiblity for. 


I hope the sweet girl will heal well. You did the right thing even if it was so expensive. 

Post # 29
1603 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@Nel13:  I think it is amazing that you saved this little gerbil. It is great that not only are you teaching your son responsibility and consequences, you’re teaching him to value ALL life. You’re a great mama and pet owner!

Post # 30
8482 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2014

@Nel13:  You are an amazing person.

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