Most gerbils live happy healthy lives. They make excellent pets, even with a short life span. Though it may not be common knowledge, about 20 to 40 percent of all gerbils may develop seizures. These are typically seen as body convulsions and usually develop around 2 months of age.
Considered inherited, gerbils with seizures are usually from specific breed lines, with a history of seizures in the parents and siblings. There is no treatment for these seizures and many will outgrow them with time. The seizure usually passes within a few minutes and typically has no lasting effects. Some feel that the seizures may be brought on by stress.
No special care or consideration is needed except to try to reduce stressful situations, which is a good idea for any gerbil. If your gerbil is prone to seizures, breeding that gerbil is not recommended.