Why did my mouse die?

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Why did my mouse die?

Post by Leggyownz on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 8:42 am

So I got an adorable female mouse to accompany my other female mouse who recently lost her cage mate. On a side note, her previous friend had scratched herself to death. By the time I recognized it was an issue, it was too late to prevent her from scratching. So anyway, back to the mouse I got last night. The store I went to didn't really ask which one I would prefer which is fine with me. I also didn't really get to see her too well before he put her in the box. Once I got home, I picked her up which was odd she allowed me to so easily. She seemed lifeless as I picked her up. I noticed she was breathing and would move a little but not very much. I set her in the cage and again she didn't really move. I thought maybe she was the deepest sleeping mouse I had ever seen. I checked back on her a few times and saw she had moved to a different part of the cage to sleep. A bit later I picked her up again as she seemed so lifeless. I ended up finding she had what appeared to be an abscess on her belly as well as a lump a bit lower down as if she was a boy. I couldn't identify one way or another whether female or male but I still assume her to be a female. She was also cold as well. I got a hot rag and held it to her abscess, and she seemed to really come back to life, she started moving around and wasn't nearly as lifeless. I managed to get her to eat while sitting in my hand. She was dizzy and had very little control over her head when she chose to move it. When she would walk she would walk like she was drunk. I got her to drink some water and eat some food so I put her into the cage. I set her in the corner with food around her so she wouldn't have to walk to the food bowl. I turned around for a few seconds and when I looked back at her she was sitting in the food bowl across the cage eating, she walked around and scurried around still dizzy like but she seemed to have some life so I left her and went to bed as it was late.

When I woke up and after my typical morning routine I checked on her to find she had passed, she was slightly warm so it wasn't that long since she passed and she was still soft and movable, but the very evident cause was a hole in the side of her head near her ear. I've been looking things up and can't find anything to relate to this symptom. I immediately thought it was my other mouse but the hole seems too precise. I need to know what would have caused her death because if it was my original mouse, I'm not going to get her another cage mate. Maybe she put her down out of pity? I know mice feel empathy and will save other mice if they can but I've never heard of something like this. It would be a very obvious question on did she have something on the side of her head last night but no she didn't. I had taken a picture while she was in my hand and she had no signs of anything there. I was going to post a picture of the hole but it seems too graphic to post here. I could post it elsewhere if someone wants or needs to see it if you just tell me where.


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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by River on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 10:41 am

Mice dont put each other down. If you got her last night and simply put them in together, chances are -- she fought her. Mice need to be quarantined (especially when you notice symptoms of illness) and should have slower introductions. If your mouse did attack her, it isn't her fault. Get her another cage mate! I'd encourage you to read our introduction and quarantine thread.

That isn't to say that fighting was the one or only cause of her death. When you got her, she was already fatally ill. She would have died anyways. Why, we can't really say -- the abscess probably played a role. The store you got her from definitely isn't very professional or trustworthy. Are there any others near you?

I'm very sorry for your loss. Sometimes things just happen out of our control, and with a mouse as sick as you described, there wasn't much you could do.
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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by Leggyownz on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 10:52 am

I will have to take a look at that, Thank you. I contacted the store I got her from (petco) to see if there was a guarantee on the life of a mouse, especially considering she was sick already. Waiting on a reply. I'm at work so I had to go through E-mail so hopefully they get back with me here soon.

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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by River on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 10:59 am

Petco should have had you sign a warranty I believe. It lasts 14 days, but if you didn't sign, I'm sure they'll do something about it anyway. Good luck!
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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by Peachy on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 11:07 am

Was there something she could have hit her head on if she was dizzy? I wouldn't blame or punish your other mouse. If they fought it's likely because of being stressed, ill, and improperly introduced. Human errors, not mousey ones.

Petco should either let you get a new mouse or give you a refund. That's typical and they usually go over it during adoption. I personally would suggest a refund and finding somewhere else to go. If one mouse was unhealthy, it's very likely that others are, too. I'll share a couple links for you to read.

Includes some things to look for when searching for a new mouse:
https://www.petmousefanciers.com/t6-bringing-your-new-mouse-home

Quarantine and Intro info:
https://www.petmousefanciers.com/t7-quarantine, https://www.petmousefanciers.com/t19-keeping-mice-together-introducing-them

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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by Leggyownz on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 11:13 am

Thank you, this definitely gives me some things to go over. Nothing that she could have hit her head on though. It's just a kaytee multi-layer habitat. Unless she managed to climb up the platform and fall off, but there's nothing for her to hit her head on that would leave a circle in the way that it did.

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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by MerciToujoursMaPetiteBoop on Thu 11 Jan 2018, 11:58 am

If there was an untreated infection, there may have been sepsis, which can quickly perpetrate all kinds of damage and cause symptoms such as the ones you described (low body temperature, lethargy, disorientation).

Sepsis, however, would not tear a chunk of flesh off its victim. That would have happened separately.

Poor little mousie.

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Re: Why did my mouse die?

Post by Oliveandparis on Mon 15 Jan 2018, 12:29 pm

It’s possible she died from an illness and then the other mousie did what’s natural and tried to “dispose” of the body. I’ve had that happen with rats. Especially if the body was left in the cage for more than a couple hours. Also, I’m not trying to start an argument or anything but if you knew there was something wrong why did you still put her with your other mouse?

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