Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse!

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Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! Empty Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse!

Post by SkywalkerSyd on Fri 12 May 2017, 12:24 pm

Hi guys! Yesterday I acquired a young mouse from where I volunteer and I'm a little worried! She was in a bin with her 12 other siblings and mum when the water bottle broke and soaked the bedding. I guess she hid when the lady moved all her siblings and mum into a clean container and she was left behind in the container for a couple hours. I saw her at that point and, well, I think we know what happened lol.

Anyways, the ladies there guessed she was a couple weeks old, my guess is 3 weeks because her eyes are fully open and she moves around less like a "hopper" and more like an adult mouse, although she is still extremely small. At the volunteer site they would refer to her age as a "young juvenile". They guessed she was female but they said they would be able to tell fully once she was an adult.

I know female mice need companionship but with me not knowing for sure yet if she is a female, I am waiting just in case.
I'm worried that she isn't eating or drinking because she doesn't know how, or possibly that she is too scared right now. I have been wetting her food so its softer and even wet crispbread for her as well as offered soft veggies.

I've had lots of hamsters before, and currently have a dwarf hamster that I adopted a couple weeks ago too, but no experience with mice. I just want her (or him) to be okay. I know she must be very scared after going from being with her family to suddenly not.

ALSO can young/baby mice run on wheels yet? I was going to put one in her cage but I don't want her to hurt herself.

Any help is appreciated!


Last edited by SkywalkerSyd on Fri 12 May 2017, 12:27 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : grammer)
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Post by scaredymouse on Fri 12 May 2017, 9:18 pm

Hello, welcome to the group.  Mice that young really should still be with their momma but if that's not possible, you should be supplementing her diet with kmr (kitten milk replacement) especially if you don't think she's eating much.  Although, it is very likely that she just isn't eating/drinking while you are watching.  I imagine he/she is very, very scared.  To answer your question, yes, they can have a wheel that young.  Just not a mesh wheel for a few more weeks.  At 3 weeks, the little one should be eating mostly solid foods but since they should still be nursing as well, that's where the kmr comes in.  You can also try offering the little one other foods high in protein like scrambled eggs, plain cooked chicken, or freeze dried mealworms.

Also, as far as determining the sex goes- if you put it in a clear bowl and take a picture from below of the genitals and abdomen we can likely help you determine the sex.  You might be able to tell yourself... Only females have visible nipples!  Usually at that age, they are easy to spot.  Otherwise, there are other ways to tell!

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Post by SkywalkerSyd on Sat 13 May 2017, 12:18 am

Thank you so much for responding! I left her alone for the majority of the day cause I wanted to give her some time to settle and she seems much more curious now. I fed her some water with a new and cleaned paintbrush and she drank from it right away. She also ate a tiny handful of seeds and mouse food that was softened, while on my hand. I plan to buy some kmr tomorrow just in case though.

I'll post some pictures tomorrow in the hopes of someone being able to sex her/him, as well as possibly if people might be able to tell how old she may be.

Also if she is indeed a female, would it be better to get her a female companion while she is still young or wait until she's fully grown?
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Post by scaredymouse on Sat 13 May 2017, 1:15 am

It really depends on the mouse you select as a friend. Ideally, a friend should be roughly the same size. And introducing girls can be tricky. Also, females do best in groups of three. That said, I think you're best bet would be to wait a couple of weeks until she's bigger and then get 2 similarly sized young mice, making sure to follow proper introduction procedure to ensure a successful introduction. What happened to the other babies? Is it possible to get your hands on some siblings?

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Lady mice: Maggie, Claire, and Penny (aka Sweet P)
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Post by SkywalkerSyd on Sat 13 May 2017, 2:41 am

Okay sounds good. I've looked into introducing female mice to one another so I know it's not as simple as just putting them together, but thank you for the tip for three!

Unfortunately, where I volunteer is an owl rehabilitation center for an endangered owl species in British Columbia so they raise the mice as food. I always wanted to ask the biologist there for a mouse to have, but I never liked the idea of "playing god" and just picking one that would get to live. The babies are raised and then put down humanely around 5 weeks old. I know that sounds very gruesome and cruel but the mice are well cared for, and I would not volunteer there otherwise.

When she just sort of showed up alone in that container it felt right because it wasn't me just picking a mouse, and the idea of selecting other mice from the families idk it just feels wrong. Because of that I have been looking into adoptable mice that need rehoming, but if siblings would be a better fit then I may be able to ask the vet tech on the site.
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Post by scaredymouse on Sat 13 May 2017, 3:30 am

Ah, I see. And it doesn't seem gruesome, owls have to eat too. The fact that the mice are treated well and humanely euthanized is the best case scenario. I see what you mean about choosing, when i save mice from the feeder bin, i always carry guilt over the ones i didn't bring home. If siblings aren't readily available, don't worry too much. It's not even a guarantee that things would go smooth.

At the end of the day, it has to do with their personalities. Work on taming the little lady and then while the new mice are in quarantine, tame them as well. Then follow the steps! And it problems arise, we can help walk you through them. Most of the time things work out.

And who knows, maybe 'she' is a boy!

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Lady mice: Maggie, Claire, and Penny (aka Sweet P)
Gentleman mice: Alexander
Other pets: Little Buddy, Kevin (cats) Sherberta, Dustin, Lidiya, Chip, Squiggy, Nina, Harold, Spike, Mia, Mim, Henrietta(hamsters), Chloe and Zoey (chinchillas), Herman/Figaro Whooopers/Burlington (guinea pigs)
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Post by SkywalkerSyd on Sat 13 May 2017, 4:35 pm

Okay thank you so much for understanding, after perusing the forum and reading a ton of topics and such I see that the topic of "feeder" mice isn't as taboo as I thought phew! I may look into asking the vet tech if I can adopt out any female mommas that are getting too old for litters and then giving them a good home to relax in.

Also I went out and got the kmr today and she loved it! I diluted it a bit with water and then warmed it up in a dish of hot water until it was lukewarm, and then just dipped it in the paintbrush and she lapped right from it.

These are the best I could do regarding underside pictures, hopefully this is a good enough view to maybe get an idea of what sex she/he is.

Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! C_vj2x10
Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! C_vjsb10

Hopefully those pictures show up!
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Post by SkywalkerSyd on Sat 13 May 2017, 4:45 pm

Also these are some pictures that show her and her size better!
Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! Img_5011
Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! Jj11

She's in her little travel carrier just for the photos she does have a large aquarium that she calls home, also she does not have the wood bedding in her cage but instead carefresh. Is carefresh good bedding for mice? She seems to like it for burrowing under, but I only have it because it's what my dwarf hamster "Fish" enjoys.

Also I've decided on naming the lil mouse "Bird" just to keep to the naming animals other animals name theme I have going on, also because of the owl center she came from!


Last edited by SkywalkerSyd on Sat 13 May 2017, 4:51 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : update)
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Post by scaredymouse on Sat 13 May 2017, 6:18 pm

Well, it's nearly impossible to tell if it's make it female from the photos, she's got very dark fur, poor lighting and the glass is really thick! But if i had to venture a guess based on what i could see, i would say female. Are you able to see nipples when you look at her belly?

yes, carefresh is a good bedding, just make sure you don't get the kind with fragrances added. That goes for hamsters, too. She looks nice and healthy. And I'm glad she likes the kmr! She only really needs it for another week or two, for extra calories and protein. Then she'll be fine on all solid foods.

If she'll tolerate it... Another way to try to take a pic is to place her on a flat surface, gently grab her at the base of the trail lifting up just her back feet off the ground and taking a picture of her bottom and belly.

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Gentleman mice: Alexander
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Post by Rodents rock! on Sun 14 May 2017, 6:57 pm

Bird is so cute Love
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Post by SkywalkerSyd on Tue 16 May 2017, 5:54 pm

Getting a picture of her is definitely harder than I thought! I'll keep trying for a good one, but it may be a while.

I have some other questions regarding her though. She's yet to use her wheel but I'm leaving it in her cage. At what age is it normal for mice to begin using them?

Also, she spends a lot of time in her house and I feel bad lifting it up and taking her out cause I want her to feel safe in there, but I also want to ensure shes hand trained while she's young. A lot of taming instructions say to hold out food but its impossible to hold out food if shes under her coconut house lol

Just wondering if I'm doing things alright or if theres any tips or tricks.
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Post by scaredymouse on Wed 17 May 2017, 2:22 am

No hand feeding until she is tame. It encourages biting. Understandably, they confuse fingers for food. So, the best way to tame is to get her out of the tank and into neutral territory, then begin getting her familiar with your hands. To get her out of the tank, try to coax her into your hand. If that doesn't work, scoop her into a toilet paper tube and block both ends and transport her. Bathtubs are great places to tame mice. Get in there with her and let her run around. Or you can put her in a big box. Then, basically just play the "I pick you up. I put you down" game. They slowly learn that it's safe in your hands and that you will let them go again. Then when you put her back in the tank, plop in a few treats. She will know they are from you and she will learn that she gets rewards after coming out to play. Note: If she doesn't want to get in your hand, just gently back her into a corner and gently scoop her up. Trying to do these things in her tank before she's tame doesn't foster trust, that's why it's best to do taming out of the tank.

There are more aggressive ways of taming but this is a great starting point.

_________________
Lady mice: Maggie, Claire, and Penny (aka Sweet P)
Gentleman mice: Alexander
Other pets: Little Buddy, Kevin (cats) Sherberta, Dustin, Lidiya, Chip, Squiggy, Nina, Harold, Spike, Mia, Mim, Henrietta(hamsters), Chloe and Zoey (chinchillas), Herman/Figaro Whooopers/Burlington (guinea pigs)
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Post by SkywalkerSyd on Thu 25 May 2017, 11:29 pm

Thanks so much for your help! The last week I've done the bathtub method multiple times, and she's definitely comfortable with me now. She hops right on my hand if I lay it on the bottom of her aquarium for a couple seconds, and is exploring her environment a lot now. She is a little sweetheart and is very vocal with little chirps and squeaks, and has never once tried to bite me! She still seems to have no interest in her wheel other than creating nests under it, but maybe one day lol.

I went to a new local pet shop and randomly started chatting to the owner about both Bird, my mouse and Fish; my hamster (yes I know that's a tad bit confusing). We got on the topic of me looking for another female mouse, but I said how I didn't want to go through a giant chain like Petsmart, and no local shelters have had mice in a while. She then told me she could get me one through a local breeder!

She asked me what colouring I was looking for, to which I just simply said that I was looking for a "beige" mouse (something lighter than Bird so I can distinctly tell them apart).
This is what my mind says a beige mouse is:
Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! Fawnbr10

But I've google searched "beige mouse" and most pictures that show up are what I would call white. It's obviously not a major factor what colour the mouse is but I'm just curious, so this may sound like an odd question but if someone asked for a beige mouse, what colouring would you think of?

Also I'm already prepping the quarantine cage as the new mouse should be here by possibly Monday! As a sidenote as well, I know mouse social structures work best in trios so after this introduction I will give it some time and then look into adopting another girlie.
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Post by CallaLily on Fri 26 May 2017, 6:49 am

Here's what our variety page says about beige:
Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! Screen17
https://www.petmousefanciers.com/t12-varieties-of-mice


And what AFRMA says:
Please help! Adopted orphaned mouse! Screen18
http://www.afrma.org/miceself.htm

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Post by Rodents rock! on Fri 26 May 2017, 7:43 pm

Very exciting, can't wait to see your new girl when you get her. After quarantine, I hope you have a smooth introduction. Very Happy
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