Am I impatient, or doing something wrong?

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Am I impatient, or doing something wrong? Empty Am I impatient, or doing something wrong?

Post by Rydiante on Tue 06 Mar 2018, 7:57 pm

Bit of background info, I've only had my mice for a week. They were from a local breeder, and presumably socialized. I have three girls, Annabelle, Alice, and Camilla (Milly).

After giving them a day or two to settle in, I decided to start testing the water by putting my hand in the age. Annabelle is the most fearless little mouse I've ever met. Without hesitation she crawled right into my hand and started curiously nibbling on my fingers (this was a habit I was mostly able to break her out of by wiggling the finger she was nibbling and firmly saying no. She still goes for my nails though, might have to just keep them short.) This is a behavior she's continued to do. I managed to use their hide to transfer her out of the cage a few days later, and I did a bathtub session with her. She happily ran all over, and I was able to scoop her up a few times with ease. She won't stay on my hand long enough for me to pick her up while she's in the cage though, and I haven't tried scooping her up there yet.

As great as this is, the other two mice are very different from Annabelle. Alice will approach and nibble on my hand a little, but she still isn't comfortable with crawling on my hand.

Camilla will not approach my hand at all. She's comfortable with me being near the cage now, but she'll run and hide the moment I open the lid and she will NOT come out.

I've been trying this daily with mostly the same results. Annabelle is curious at first but eventually gets bored of my presence and goes off to do something else. Alice will approach me a few times and then wander off. And Milly continues being reclusive.

I guess what I'm asking is, where do I go from here? I don't feel like the other two are exactly ready to be taken out of the cage yet, but will things ever progress on their own?
I know it's only been a week so I'm hesitant to do much else. Is this just something I need to wait out?

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Post by MiasMice on Tue 06 Mar 2018, 10:33 pm

I know I'm not very experienced with mice but I think the taming process would be similar with guinea pigs. Some are just extremely outgoing and very explorative making it quick and easy but others are just timid and will take a while. It could take a week or a few months. Just keep on trying everyday and maybe put a snack on your hand? I wouldn't do it too often as I want my animals to come to me because they want to not for food.
Hope this was kind of helpful Laughing

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Post by CucumberMouse on Tue 06 Mar 2018, 10:48 pm

Just keep doing what you're doing, things should be fine Smile Usually it's best to not even try to tame your mouse for it's first five days to a week at it's new home. Annabelle being willing to go on your hands after 5 or so days means that you probably got lucky with a social mouse. Honestly, I'd say Alice too, just being willing to come up to your hand after only a few days, is progressing faster than most mice. Camilla has made progress and is now comfortable with you being around the cage, right? It'll take a bit longer but she'll probably come around too. Mice are prey animals, so almost all of them are skittish around bigger animals. And, some mice will never be as comfortable as others are with people. It just depends on the mouse. Some mice will take months, let alone days to make progress. Your girls sound to be doing just fine to me, but, like MiasMice said, if you want to try and push the progress a little faster, you could try putting a treat on your hand. Just don't forcibly put the mice on your hand ever (unless it's an emergency), that would likely scare them and make them less likely to trust you. Patience it key. Good luck with your girls Wink
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Post by CallaLily on Wed 07 Mar 2018, 8:47 am

It sounds like your making good progress to me. Some mice take longer to trust than others. I do suggest taking them out of their home for taming sessions though. Use the bath tub or a bin or any other safe space that works for you. I find things move along better outside of their home and eventually will get better in their home too. You can use a tube or box to transfer them over at first, until they’re comfortable enough to climb in your hand on their own. I find they’re quicker to climb on you in the neutral play space, and I like to play a simple little game with them to get them used to movement. When they start climbing on my hand with ease, I slowly move them from one side of the play space to the other. It’s not long before they’re running back to the start space for another ride! For more timid mice, I play the same game but instead of my hand I use a designated tube. The only catch is, when I let them out at the end of their ride, they have to step onto my hand to get down. At first they dart quickly, barely touching my hand. But eventually they learn I’m not threat and they begin taking their time with it.

Also, I do not suggest hand feeding treats to untamed mice. I find this encourages biting/nipping because they come to expect food when they see your hand or fingers. It’s better for them to come to you for you anyway. But once they’re tamed, hand feeding treats is fine if you like to bond this way.

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Post by jubilee on Wed 07 Mar 2018, 9:33 am

I got Phoebe about four months ago.  When I first got her she wouldn't look at me, she'd run away whenever I walked into the room, and she even bit me once.  Now, after four months of taming, she runs to me when I walk by and begs to be held and loved.  You're doing everything right, it just takes time with some mice.  I'd keep at it, and maybe incorporate a little watered down peanut butter into your taming.  If your mice begin to associate you with something good, like peanut butter, it might speed up the taming process.  I learned that Phoebe looooved food. Peanut butter, pasta, bread, tortillas, cashews, crackers, you name it, she loves it! Good luck, and don't give up on your mice! They may surprise you. Heart

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