|Hello, mice lovers, wherever you are!
So, you are thinking about getting a mouse.
|LIFE SPAN - 2 years|
|Like most small pets, they are easy to look after and cheap to feed, but can still give lots of love and companionship to the owner.|
|Their short life span, difficult to find if they escape and they can smell a bit if not cleaned out regularly. They obviously cannot be house trained, although they usually use a certain part of their cage as the toilet area, and some people find it unpleasant when holding them and being given little 'pressies'.|
|Like all pets, the larger the cage the better. As mice have a
tendency to gnaw, their cage should be made from hardwood, moulded plastics,
metal, glass (fish tank), weld or wire mesh (ensuring the mesh is smaller
than the mouse to stop it sneaking through.
A multi-storey cage is particularly suitable for mice, allowing them to indulge in their talent for climbing, and giving you pleasure in constructing it. Each level should have a floor in it to prevent the mouse from falling from top to bottom, connected with ladders leading to a hole onto the next level. Whether it is multi-storey or not, with a little imagination, you can make the mouse a lovely home. It's cage should have at least a nest box with bedding in which to sleep (this could be made of a wicker plant plot, a small cardboard box, etc., with commercially prepared bedding sold at pet shops or meadow hay), ropes and ladders for climbing, an exercise wheel, a twig or wooden cotton reel for gnawing, cardboard toilet tubes for exploring, etc. The more 'toys' it has, the happier it will be and the more fun to watch.
Female mice do not smell if their cages are kept clean, but male mice will smell a little. Their cage should have a layer of sawdust which should be replaced at least twice a week, with all areas scrubbed at least once a week with a mild disinfectant which should be rinsed off thoroughly, and the cage allowed to dry before replacing the sawdust. Having a spare cage could be useful to keep the mouse secure during this process. Their food dishes and drinking water should be thoroughly cleaned on a daily basis and refreshed.
Mice are fastidious about their personal hygiene and will adequately groom themselves without the need of our help.
They are easily handled. Mice are usually lifted out of their cage by their tail and quickly placed onto the palm of your other hand. They are more easily trained by offering them food from your hand. My 'mother' mouse use to sit at the entrance to her nest box waiting for me to pass her bits of bedding which she would take out of my hand, returning for another piece when it was positioned in her bed. She would also follow my feet around the lawn, running up my stocking leg.
|It is not advisable to keep different sexed mice together unless you want 100s of babies. I had a mother and her daughter live together very happily. The best advice is to buy the same sexed mice at the same time out of the same litter.|
|Non known of.|
|Mice are omnivorous in captivity. It is usual to feed two meals
a day. Their diet should consist of a pet shop bought mouse food
mix, raw fruit and vegetables (carrot, swede, celery, apple and green
vegetables in moderation), hay, and, occasionally, boiled egg, ham, cheese.
A salt and mineral block should also be available.
Drinking water is best provided in drip feed containers.
|These small rodents have very poor recuperative powers. If you
suspect it is ill take it to a vet immediately. However, prevention
is better than cure and it is very important that their home is kept clean.
Their food should be fresh and replaced daily to avoid INTESTINAL COMPLAINTS.
Avoid sudden changes in temperature, draughts and dampness which could
lead to BRONCHITIS or PNEUMONIA.
It is very rare for a mouse to get fleas, etc., but should you notice an infestation use a cat flea powder after thorough cleaning the cage and replacing all bedding and sawdust.
If your mouse seems to be off its food, check its teeth as they may need trimming by a vet. However, this problem should not occur if you have sufficient gnawing materials in its cage.