One of my girls escapes

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One of my girls escapes

Post by darling679 on Wed May 24, 2017 11:23 am

I got 3 girls 3 weeks ago and these are my first mice. I have a 10g with a tank topper with 3/8" X 3"in. gaps which just one of my girls escapes from so I bought gutter guard, cut it with tin snips and used floral wire to fasten it around the entire tank. Where the water bottle goes it didn't fit against the wire and the same girl escaped and this time made it all the way to the floor which is 2 1/2' down a table plus the tank and topper. I secured all of it the best I can and she hasn't escaped since but the gutter guard is VERY sharp where it was cut and I'm afraid if she does try again, she will be seriously injured. I am looking at 2 options and really need opinions. Martin's cages has a two story tank topper with 1/2" X 1" squares or I can get a custom 1/2" X 1/2" These are over $100 after shipping and I'm not sure my girl can't escape. The other option is to do the Kaytee 2 story Habitrail and modify it to be a topper then they will have tubes etc. I love the house that they have in their tank now but am not even sure if it is good for them. I could do way more cool things with a Martins cage but am afraid she may still be able to escape. The girs, Bubbles, Gypsy and Jazzy are only 8 weeks old, how much more growing will they do and will it be enough to stop Bubbles from escaping out of a 1/2" X 1" gap? I know this is long but I appreciate having a forum of experienced mousers to ask.

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Re: One of my girls escapes

Post by darling679 on Wed May 24, 2017 11:27 am

I also forgot to mention that I have 5 dogs so it is very important that they don't escape.

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Re: One of my girls escapes

Post by CallaLily on Wed May 24, 2017 1:20 pm

Mice can definitely squeeze through 1/2 inch openings, even larger mice. That's one of the main issues with tank toppers and barred cages in the U.S. - it's hard to find ones that they can't escape from (or that a wild mouse can't get in!).  Many of us stick to aquariums with a metal mesh reptile lid with locking clips.  I do think @Peachy once made a diy topper.  She'll probably have more advice for you. Personally I would just skip the toppers all together.

Also, there's a concern with the habitrail-type cages.  Large extensions of tubes and/or areas connected by a small opening can greatly increase the risk of fighting/bullying and the colony splitting.  On top of that it makes weekly cleaning more difficult and they're pretty cheaply made so they break easily.  

IMO, aquariums with proper mesh lids and locking clips are the way to go with mice.   Plenty of ventilation, easy access, easy to clean, very secure. And you can still hang hammocks and things from the lid to make use of the height. Very Happy

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Re: One of my girls escapes

Post by darling679 on Wed May 24, 2017 1:51 pm

Thank you! Maybe I will just get them a 20g. We don't have any space left in the 10g for anything

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Re: One of my girls escapes

Post by Peachy on Wed May 24, 2017 8:17 pm

I think a 20 gallon would be a great alternative. I bought my first one a few months ago and can't wait for the next dollar per gallon sale. Razz

For future reference, spacing ideally shouldn't be much larger than 1/4 an inch. If you're interested in building your own topper, there are plenty of easy tutorials... I like them better than store bought toppers because they're much lighter, so easier to take off and put back on. And you can make larger doors for easier access.

But! Amazon has cages you can buy with appropriate bar spacing and floor space for less than $100. If you have the money to spend, it's a good investment IMO. Smile
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Re: One of my girls escapes

Post by Rodents rock! on Wed May 24, 2017 9:18 pm

I agree 100% that an aquarium, 10 or 20 gallons with a metal mesh lid and clips is the best way to go. And the added bonuses with this type of set up, no escapes, nicer to view mice, and easy to clean. Very Happy

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