Brothers ok together?

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Brothers ok together? Empty Brothers ok together?

Post by Ravenmist on Sun 07 Apr 2019, 5:35 am

I have just gotten two 5/6 week old mice, both male. I have had a male mouse previously but he was by himself as I was told males couldn't be housed together. But when I got these two, they said that because they were brothers from the same litter that it should be fine. I have done some online reading and I see that some people have been successful and I'm asking whether I should keep them together or not? I do hear squeaks from them but its only day 2 in a new environment and so I'm assuming they are just figuring out a pecking order. No blood is being drawn and they interact fine at other times. Also if there are any tips or tricks in keeping them together that would be great (prefer them to have the company).

I have a separate cage in case I need to separate them.

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Post by CallaLily on Mon 08 Apr 2019, 1:38 pm

Males should never be housed together after weaning. Even brothers will eventually fight once they start to mature. Fights can become deadly very quickly, so even boys who appear to get along now are at great risk.

Naturally Mus musculus live in groups that consist of 1 male and a group of females plus any young offspring. Other males and young that have matured are fought or chased off.  In the wild the weaker male has plenty of opportunity to get away but in captivity there is no where to go, so this behavior ends with much more serious injuries or in death.  There are some reports of very beaten down submissive males living in these groups but this is in extreme circumstances and not ideal.  And of course we can’t house a male with females unless he’s been neutered — which is risky to have done unless you have a very experienced (with mice) exotic vet.

There are some breeders (mainly in the UK I believe) who spent many many many many generations trying to breed out this territorial behavior. From what I’ve read few have been very successful in the long term.

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Post by FairyMouse on Mon 15 Apr 2019, 11:20 am

I've read that brothers can sometimes live together, too. Since they were introduced young, maybe? Just watch them closely for now!
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Post by CallaLily on Mon 15 Apr 2019, 8:50 pm

@FairyMouse wrote:I've read that brothers can sometimes live together, too. Since they were introduced young, maybe? Just watch them closely for now!

Sorry, nope. Even brothers will eventually fight as they mature. I know there are many out there who take that risk but more often than not it just ends with one or both seriously injured or dead! It’s not worth the risk to even try unless you have very well bred mice who have specifically been carefully bred over many many generations to try to do away with male Mus musculus’ territorial behavior (and even then there are still times it doesn’t work out!). It does not come naturally for male Mus musculus to live together!

Males Living Together WARNING GRAPHIC PHOTOS

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currently without meece but always remembering:
Cheeseburger, Bacon, Twix, Hashbrown, Daryl,
Celyn, Rina, Seren, Hazel, Arsinoe, Tilda, & Eulyn

Gerbils: Oghren & Merin / Jeffrey, Geoffrey, & Jeffri /
Hamlet & Horatio / Emrys, Cream, & Hershey / 
Bill & Frances   Hearts  Hamster: Daydream
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Post by Animallover562 on Mon 22 Apr 2019, 6:42 pm

There’s quite a bit of debate over this. I personally think it is never worth the risk of keeping them together! I’ve been told by someone that I abuse my male mice by keeping them alone before though so... people have their opinions! But I would recommend separating them just because they aren’t neutered and will most likely fight once they mature. I hope I could help
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Post by girl.bear on Wed 24 Jul 2019, 8:34 am

This is interesting since I was not aware of the risks until I read this thread, however I had housed two brothers together and they NEVER fought and they loved each other very much. Neutral

One did eventually die, but he was a very weak mouse who had always been a runt and got sick often. He did die young, so that is possibly the reason they never fought. They probably just didn't get old enough to start to become aggressive.

Do any of you know the approximate age two males housed together will start to become aggressive toward each other?

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Post by CallaLily on Wed 24 Jul 2019, 12:04 pm

@girl.bear wrote:This is interesting since I was not aware of the risks until I read this thread, however I had housed two brothers together and they NEVER fought and they loved each other very much. Neutral

One did eventually die, but he was a very weak mouse who had always been a runt and got sick often. He did die young, so that is possibly the reason they never fought. They probably just didn't get old enough to start to become aggressive.

Do any of you know the approximate age two males housed together will start to become aggressive toward each other?

It really can vary. Some will start fighting before they’re fully weaned and others much later. The main problem is when they do —and it is mostly a question of when, not if— it can very quickly turn violent. And because they’re in a cage/tank the weaker male has no where to go so it almost always leads to serious injury or death in captivity.

Your boys may have been a rare exception or maybe you were just really lucky or possibly the smaller, weaker boy was always kind of beaten down by his more dominant brother. It’s hard to say for sure. But the majority of male mus musculus are far too territorial to live with other males.

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currently without meece but always remembering:
Cheeseburger, Bacon, Twix, Hashbrown, Daryl,
Celyn, Rina, Seren, Hazel, Arsinoe, Tilda, & Eulyn

Gerbils: Oghren & Merin / Jeffrey, Geoffrey, & Jeffri /
Hamlet & Horatio / Emrys, Cream, & Hershey / 
Bill & Frances   Hearts  Hamster: Daydream
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Post by girl.bear on Wed 24 Jul 2019, 1:49 pm

I see! Thanks for the reply Smile

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