Possible Reason for Sudden Death

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Possible Reason for Sudden Death Empty Possible Reason for Sudden Death

Post by ElysiumMice on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 12:54 pm

**Warning: This post includes details of what is often observed when mice are dying. Some readers may find it distressing.**




First let me start by saying I am not a veterinarian, simply a mouse enthusiast.
I currently own 27 mice & even though I do my best at providing optimal care, I occasionally get a sudden fatality.
After reading forum after forums, realizing that this seems to be an unfortunate reality for many mouse parents, I started doing some research.
After months of research all I seemed to find was the common ailments associated with parasites, or upper respiratory infections. None of which provided the answer of why my mouse is perfectly fine one day only to find it dead the next.
The common symptoms I would typically see in a mouse that is dying would be in the following sucsetion:

1. Perfectly fine the night before. Running around eating , drinking, playing on its wheel, rummaging around in its bedding, & checking me out with curiosity for potential treat.
2. Wake up in the morning & check on everyone only to either find the mouse dead in its nest or failing to thrive.
3. If it's found falling to thrive, these are some symptoms I have noticed.
3a. Lethargy, mouse not wanting to move.
3b. Mouse very cold to the touch.
3c. Mouse is not breathing as fast as normal.
3d. Mouse stays in a hunched position.
3e. Mouse's hair appears unkept.
3f. Mouse does not want to eat or drink.
4. At this point is when I want to cry as I know no matter what I do it will die, however I try anyway. This is what I have experienced when trying.
4a. I place the mouse in a small piece of thin material (this keeps stress down for the mouse) & hold it in my hands in order to bring the body temperature back up.
4b. I force feed a little Benebac along with warm water.
4c. Generally after holding the mouse in my hands for an hour or so it appears to start coming around with breathing becoming more rapid. Unfortunately this episode is short lived.
4d. The mouse will then appear to go in to a comatose state. It is still breathing & may move, however it does not respond to tail or feet squeeze & the eyes will not shut when placing your finger by it.
4e. Breathing will decrease & continue to decrease until the mouse goes in to shock & dies. This is the part many people confuse as a seizure or heart attack.
4f. When the mouse dies the natural nerve reflexes will cause the body & legs to spasm, often giving the appearance it is still breathing a little. Also the mouth will open wide giving the appearance the mouse is trying to gasp for air. Due to muscle loss, urination & passing of stool may occur at this point.
5. After much research I have concluded that this phenomenon may be the cause of Tyzzer disease. A condition that affects the liver & sometime the heart. It is mainly transmitted via exposure to the feces or body fluids of a carrier mouse. It is highly contagious, with very little if any at all warning signs, & 100% fatal. It also in some cases can be transmitted airborne. This disease can be transmitted to dogs, cats, horses, & other rodent species. It is always prudent to treat all your mice as if they are carriers of some disease. By this I suggest frequent cleaning of cages, water bottles, & toys. Never share anything with other mice that has not been thoroughly cleaned & disinfected first.
6. Have an understanding of what your cleaning disinfectant actually kills as well as the effective exposure time to the disinfectant. Bleach is not a good disinfectant as it will not kill many viruses, salmonella, & types of infectious bacteria. Personally I use the labeled directions of Odo Band, or F10 SCXD Veterinary Cleanser-Sanitizer.
I hope sharing my personal experience helps some folks here.
I have a little cemetary for my little companions who's lives are much to short.
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Post by Drago on Wed 25 Jan 2017, 6:11 pm

Thank you for posting this, the information in this is very helpful and useful for soon-to-be mouse owners like me, as well as even experienced ones!

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Post by CinnamonPearl on Thu 26 Jan 2017, 5:52 am

Could you not have posted a Graphic Descriptions warning on this?! Please! I just lost a mouse for god's sake! I didn't need this first thing in the morning.

Can a mod do something about this?

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Post by Peachy on Thu 26 Jan 2017, 10:54 am

I'm not sure what's graphic about this. If you're sensitive to discussion about death, perhaps titles that include "reason for death" and go on to say, "the common symptoms that I would see in a mouse that is dying..." should be avoided.

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Post by CinnamonPearl on Thu 26 Jan 2017, 11:06 am

I hold that we don't need an in depth description of mouse deaths on the forum, seeing as the majority of us already know what they're like. I thought the OP would be asking for assistance in finding out how a mouse died, and those threads have descriptions that are much tamer than this. Can you not see how this might not make some people uncomfortable?

Besides, if on this forum we'll put warnings around mentions of snakes, I think it's in the realm of possibility to warn for this too.

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Post by CallaLily on Thu 26 Jan 2017, 11:38 am

I can see why it's upsetting but I also see how it's useful information to the group. They're describing symptoms and a possible answer to them. But a warning wouldn't hurt anything either.

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Post by Peachy on Thu 26 Jan 2017, 12:05 pm

Snakes being mentioned certainly don't need a warning. The rules only ask for a warning if there's a picture of a snake or if you're discussing mice being culled for or fed to them. There's a notable difference between discussing mice dying from a health issue and mice dying at the hands (or fangs Giggling) of a predator.

But anyway, I'll add a warning to the top of the post.

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