Gerbils are the most common rodents to be allegedly inserted.
Gerbilling, also known as gerbil stuffing or gerbil shooting, is an urban legend that describes a supposed sexual practice of inserting small live animals (usually gerbils but also mice, hamsters, rats and various other rodents) into the human rectum to obtain stimulation. Some variations of the legend suggest that the rodent be covered in a psychoactive substance such as cocaine prior to being inserted.
According to folklorist Jan Harold Brunvand, accounts of gerbilling were first recorded in 1984 and initially were said to involve a mouse and an unidentified man. In subsequent versions of the story, the animal was a gerbil and the story applied to several male celebrities. Rumors surrounding various male celebrities engaging in gerbilling have become persistent urban legends.
According to Snopes.com writers, gerbilling is simply an unverified and persistent urban legend that is pure fiction.
Dan Savage, a well-known sex-advice columnist who frequently discusses unusual sexual practices, has stated that he has never received a first-hand or even a second-hand account of the practice.
Mike Walker, a National Enquirer gossip columnist, spent months attempting to verify the gerbilling rumors about a celebrity. "I've never worked harder on a story in my life," Walker told the Palm Beach Post in 1995. After much investigation, he was unable to find any evidence that a gerbilling incident ever happened: "I'm convinced that it's nothing more than an urban legend."
As of the mid-1980s, there were no reports in peer-reviewed medical literature describing gerbilling.