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Had a recent death with a swollen anus; trying to prevent a repeat

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Re: Had a recent death with a swollen anus; trying to prevent a repeat

Post by CallaLily on Fri Aug 04, 2017 1:35 pm

First I'd like to say that this list originally started as a personal list over on the old forum, where I was looking for help and second opinions on a few foods. I never dreamed it would become a stickied list. Most of the things in the avoid list aren't necessarily toxic, but are recommended to be avoided for one reason or another, or in some cases I couldn't find for sure information on a food -like tomatoes- where people couldn't agree on their safety.  So please view it as a very simplified starting point for the average beginner mouse-parent.  And if you do have info on the safety of an item on the avoid list, please feel free to share it. I'm not an expert in this area by any means. Just a mouse-mom who was once looking to put together my own go-to safe foods list.

Tomato I don't personally agree with.  I think small amounts occasionally would be fine. It is definitely something that varies on the source.  Some say it's too acidic.

Citrus is on many lists to avoid because of the acidity. You're probably right that its a matter of how much how often, but many recommend to avoid it completely.

Celery is because of the strings but I personally feel if you chop it up in small pieces it shouldn't be a problem at all.

I disagree on the mulberry too. A very very experienced member on the old forum told me to avoid it, and since I couldn't find more on it I just left it there.

I actually don't agree that fresh or dried mint leaves would be a problem. I think the confusion may be from the use of the essential oil as a pest deterrent, but there's a big difference between that and the actual plant.

So what it mostly comes down to in some cases is better safe than sorry.

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Re: Had a recent death with a swollen anus; trying to prevent a repeat

Post by CallaLily on Fri Aug 04, 2017 2:36 pm

@Elliander wrote:Maybe it would be helpful to specify on the list why something should be avoided, or if it's an unknown?

AVOID
celery - I disagree with for reasons stated above.

citrus - too acidic

chamomile - I disagree and feel confident that occasionally it's perfectly safe.

dairy - I'm told the lactose is the concern.  Cheese and plain yogurt as small occasional treats is ok.

garlic - same reason it should be limited in dogs.  Not sure what would be considered a safe dose for mice.

hibiscus - like chamomile, I think occasionally wouldn't be a problem.

hot peppers - thought to upset the digestive system, I believe was what I had read

mango - I disagree with. I was told it was too acidic.

mint - see above post

mulberry - see above post

onions - same concern as with dogs.

petunia - I feel this would be completely safe, but couldn't find info to be 100% sure and had an experienced member saying to avoid, so I just left it there.

raisins - same as dogs. Unsure if its an issue for mice. I feel grapes should be here too just in case, but for whatever reason they aren't.

raw beans - lectins, I believe is the concern. Though I don't know if it's truly one for mice.

raw potatoes - digestive upset

red meat - not harmful but should be limited for the same reasons as us.

skins - choking hazard. Honestly, I don't think it's as big a concern as some make it sound.

soy - hmmmm. I don't remember why this one's here.  It's a very common ingredient in commercial seed mixes. I've read that mice don't utilize the protein in it effectively but I could never find anything more on that.  Because of that I like for it to be lower in the ingredients list in food mixes that I choose for my mice.

spices - I think this is here mainly to remind people to offer plain cooked foods...and maybe along the same lines as hot peppers?

strawberry tops - I disagree but I know many are wary.

tomatoes - see above post

RARELY (be careful with allergies)
peanuts
peanut butter
sunflower seeds
-while I do agree that these should be limited in a mouse's diet and allergies do occur, I don't feel that's a valid reason to completely eliminate them for all mice (which I know isn't what's being said here, but it has been said in the past).  These were in the safe portion of my list but moved by others.


Additional advice given to me by an experienced member on the old forum in my original post on the topic:

@Norman's Mom wrote:Be careful using too much fish though, if they ingest too much mercury they can get sick - Salmon and poultry is much better for them then tuna or tilapia.

@Norman's Mom wrote:The other thing to remember is that mice cannot vomit. They cannot expel toxic things from their bodies if they eat/drink them, so it is very important to never even try to feed them stuff to "see if they will like it" - You wouldn't believe how many people do that and wind up with sick or dead mice.

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Re: Had a recent death with a swollen anus; trying to prevent a repeat

Post by Elliander on Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:57 pm

@CallaLily wrote:First I'd like to say that this list originally started as a personal list over on the old forum, where I was looking for help and second opinions on a few foods.

Oh, I completely understand and I read the part where you said some items are unknowns. I just wanted more information if available since the list doesn't specify why a given item is on the list.

@CallaLily wrote:Tomato I don't personally agree with.  I think small amounts occasionally would be fine. It is definitely something that varies on the source.  Some say it's too acidic.

OK, if acidity is the reason that fully explains it. The acidity of tomato can in and of itself vary wildly. A sauce would be more acidic than fresh, and certain parts are more acidic than others. That would fully explain the confusion as some people would likely have better experiences with it than others.

@CallaLily wrote:Citrus is on many lists to avoid because of the acidity. You're probably right that its a matter of how much how often, but many recommend to avoid it completely.

I think it's interesting how a mouse recovered from a GI issue that resulted in the inevitably death of two previous mice immediately after introducing an acidic food. Based on this, my inclination is to not give them either tomatoes or citrus at all when there are no problems, but then add both if any mouse exhibits symptoms of a prolapse. This seems counter intuitive though because I know that acidic foods can irritate the bladder, but then again cranberry juice can help with urinary tract infections because it kills bacteria and inhibits their growth, so maybe we are seeing a similar mechanism here? In any case I know that acidic foods can damage enamel, which is likely a bigger problem for mice, so that's reason enough to avoid acidic foods outside of a medical intervention.

@CallaLily wrote:Celery is because of the strings but I personally feel if you chop it up in small pieces it shouldn't be a problem at all.

I'm seeing a pattern between that and the cotton. On the one hand many people claim to have no problems with bedding, but I did read reports of mice choking. I'm thinking it might have more to do with mouse personality - like how some cats like eating plastic for whatever reason. In any case, they don't seem to like celery and the soft bedding just becomes a store of bacteria so I have no problem cutting them out completely.

@CallaLily wrote: I disagree on the mulberry too. A very very experienced member on the old forum told me to avoid it, and since I couldn't find more on it I just left it there.

Was there any particular reason though? Being an alkaline food I would think it would be good for them, unless there is a specific compound harmful to mice, which seems less likely if the bark is beneficial. Maybe a mouse choked on the many seeds or something?

@CallaLily wrote: I actually don't agree that fresh or dried mint leaves would be a problem. I think the confusion may be from the use of the essential oil as a pest deterrent, but there's a big difference between that and the actual plant.

That actually makes quite a bit of sense. The dosage makes the poison.

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Re: Had a recent death with a swollen anus; trying to prevent a repeat

Post by CallaLily on Fri Aug 04, 2017 4:11 pm

Thank you for sharing your knowledge! I don't remember what reason was given on mulberry. Looking over my notes I have it written under avoid with a question mark next to it. I remember not being able to find a definite yes or no, but being told to avoid it by Norman's Mom over on theFunMouse forum. I wish we still had access to the old threads so I could check.

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