Worried about male pet mouse

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Worried about male pet mouse

Post by love_mice on Sun 28 Jan 2018, 8:07 pm

I have had Cinnamon, a male mouse for over a year now but the last few days, he hasn't been his normal self at all.   He isn't eating and not drinking the water in the water bottle either.  

I just see him move sometimes to other parts of the cage and he makes a sound sometimes with his breathing.  His companion, this female mouse still eats and responds when I talk to her.  I mean, looking at me of course since mice obviously can't talk.  

I changed the bedding and cleaned the cage today, hoping that would help but it hasn't done anything for how he is acting due to whatever health problem he has.  I'm not using Pine Bedding as I know it's not good, it's Aspen so I hope that's OK and it's odorless too it says on the package that I bought at Pet Supplies Plus.

I will be quite sad if he dies tonight or this week, not sure how long he's going to live?   Sad

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by AnonymousMouseOwner on Sun 28 Jan 2018, 10:23 pm

It sounds like he might have a respiratory infection, from the way you are describing the sound he makes when he breathes in combination with lethargy and lack of appetite. If you take him to the vet, they can prescribe an antibiotic for you to give your mouse until he gets better. The sooner he gets the medicine, the better. With medicine, he could fully recover and continue on living a normal, happy life Smile

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by stephlisa on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 2:23 am

How is he doing? Did you manage to get him to a vet?

Just out of interest, are you keeping the male and female together for breeding purposes?

It might worth keeping an eye on the female too as some URIs can be contagious so she might need antibiotics too.

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by CinnamonPearl on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 9:17 am

Just out of curiosity, is this boy neutered? Or do you plan to breed them? If the latter, I would separate them until Cinnamon is feeling better.

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by love_mice on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 10:32 am

@stephlisa wrote:How is he doing? Did you manage to get him to a vet?

Just out of interest, are you keeping the male and female together for breeding purposes?

It might worth keeping an eye on the female too as some URIs can be contagious so she might need antibiotics too.

Hi, he's still struggling and I can't afford to take him to the vet because I'm unemployed for now and I have only my disability money to live off on for now. I really wanted to, trust me, I did.

Yes they are together but he isn't mating with her and hasn't tried for quite some time now.

The female which I call Miss Squeaky is doing better and still responds to my voice but he doesn't so I know he's not doing well.

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by CinnamonPearl on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 12:22 pm

If you cannot afford vet care, then why would you take animals into your care? That seems very unfair to the animals who have to go without medical care now because of your decision.

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by MerciToujoursMaPetiteBoop on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 12:55 pm

It sounds like you have limited resources, so maybe you can try some trusty home remedies for congestion and general fortitude.  Discussion, rebuttal, and any other kind of input from the rest of the mousie-loving community is heartily encouraged.  Let's put our heads together.

I know some people try to ease their little pet's congestion by taking it into the bathroom while they run hot shower water and steam up the room.  To be less wasteful, you could take a shower while you're running the hot water, but I would rather stay out with mousie to make sure it isn't becoming too hot or otherwise uncomfortable.

If you have access to eucalyptus branches, some cuttings could be brought into the room with Cinnamon, just standing in a vase near enough that you can smell them from the cage.  I would not put the branches in the cage because of possible bugs 'n' stuff, and I would not bake them first in an oven because heating could dampen or destroy the effectiveness of the oils -- not to mention that the oil in the branches makes them exceedingly FLAMMABLE.

And what about the miracle cure of miracle cures, chicken soup?  I would not serve store-bought, because of the super-high saltiness, and because I've seen in several references that onions and garlic are not safe for mice.  But it is easy enough to boil a chicken thigh in some water, add some chopped mouse-safe vegetables, a little salt and ginger and turmeric.  You should not serve it bubbling hot to Cinnamon, but you can let him enjoy the benefit of the steam treatment while it is still hot and waiting to cool.

When my little mousie, April, and I were working through some really hot weather a few summers ago, I  microwaved a little piece of chicken in water, cooled the broth down, then stored it in the fridge.  April absolutely LOVED lapping up the cool chicken water.

Similarly, if Cinnamon is not eating or drinking enough, you can try to entice him to take in a little more, with higher nutritional value, if you offer him flavored Gatorade or other electrolytic replacement drink.  Make sure, first, that there isn't any problem with any of the flavors having non-mouse-safe ingredients added.

Finally, gut health is so important to total body health, that you might give little Cinnamon some active-culture yogurt.  Just a little bit, maybe offer him a dot on a fingertip and see if he will lick it off, and then offer another if he does -- nothing like that giant serving I had yesterday with lemon curd stirred into it, but just a little plain (or peach - April liked the peach) with active cultures.  (I'm a big fan and proponent of yogurt.  'Tis said one of my grandpas home-brewed yogurt in a barrel in the basement, and folks would come by to visit and go downstairs to ladle out bowls of the precious product.  Grandpa did not earn a long life for all that, but he looked very fit in the pictures we have of him!)

More ideas???


Last edited by MerciToujoursMaPetiteBoop on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 6:49 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by CinnamonPearl on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 1:21 pm

It should be noted that home remedies will never be able to do what a veterinarian and prescription antibiotics can do, and should never be treated as an acceptable substitute. If he has a URI or any other bad respiratory disease, it will not go away. You can ease his suffering somewhat with putting him in humid environments and different plants, but the URI will eventually turn into pneumonia, and this will be fatal.

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by River on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 3:18 pm

Cinna, they said they are currently unemployed and struggling with disability checks. This doesn't mean they didn't always have the resources: sometimes things come up and we lose the money we had saved for the bills. It happens to the best of us. This doesn't mean they brought the animal in knowing they wouldn't be able to. I wouldn't be so quick to judge a situation we don't know everything about. Just a thought, though.

As for saving money...have a yard sale! Walk your neighbors dogs, look for donations, call different vets to see about plans like care credit or lowering prices for specific situations. Put away a few dollars whenever you can to raise a fund specifically for this purpose. Make more DIY toys, try budget shopping, etc.

Petcoach is an amazing website where you can ask vets free questions and include pictures. This is not a substitute for vet care, but they can offer advice and home remedies that will keep it from worsening until you can see a vet. These remedies, again, cannot substitute for antibiotics. They just help them stay comfortable while they await real treatment.

Good luck!
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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by love_mice on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 5:06 pm

@CinnamonPearl wrote:If you cannot afford vet care, then why would you take animals into your care? That seems very unfair to the animals who have to go without medical care now because of your decision.

I'd appreciate NOT being judged, it's your words that are unwelcome to me. I'm doing the best I can with my pet mice and you don't need to be judging me like that, it's not your role nor is it needed!

I can't even ask a question about what to do without being judged, it's pathetic! I'm not doing anything cruel to them and there are far worse cases than this so don't compare me to those cases!


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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by CucumberMouse on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 8:35 pm

Just going to say that we should not think about any "judgements" or anything like that made right now, and focus on what this discussion was made for. Helping the little mouse. Things come up and that's the fact of life. I don't really have any ideas on this subject for now... but does anyone else?
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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by Peachy on Tue 30 Jan 2018, 11:17 pm

Is it possible to ask someone for help with vet bills? Many vets aren't too expensive, mine is about $30 for the exam and antibiotics. Or maybe you could ask a shelter if they have any sort of assistance available. I'm not judging or chastising, but when mice stop eating and drinking, it's unlikely that they'll recover without vet care... possibly even in spite of vet care if all your vet can offer is antibiotics.

Merci's ideas about warm showers and chicken broth sound like good ways to help him get more comfortable. A heating pad would help him stay warm, possibly encouraging more activity.

At a certain point dehydration starts to be more of a concern than the actual illness... You can check hydration by gently pinching up the skin on your mouse's scruff. If it stays tented, falls slowly, he needs help. To help with dehydration you can feed KMR, Gatorade, or Pedialyte. You might have to be pushy, he likely won't feel like eating or drinking anything. There's a recipe for Pedialyte here if you can't get anything from the store: https://www.petmousefanciers.com/t25-health-packet#14

Good luck to you and Cinnamon! Good vibes

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Re: Worried about male pet mouse

Post by Rodents rock! on Tue 06 Feb 2018, 8:15 pm

Sorry to hear Cinnamon isn't doing well. If you have a vet you've used in the past, they may be willing to help you out and maybe let you make payments. I hope everything works out. Keep us posted.
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