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Playing or not? Empty Playing or not?

Post by Jadelovesfuzzers on Thu 06 Sep 2018, 12:41 am

So it’s a bit of a complicated story so I’ll start at the beginning so you get a full picture. Around 2 months ago I adopted four female mice from a pet store. For the first month they seemed to live in relative harmony. Some playful chasing here and there and a few squeaks. At the same time we noticed one of the mice (the runt of her litter) was sneezing excessively and was more lethargic then the others. We decided to take her to the vet. The vet suspects it is mycoplasmal pneunomia and prescribed antibiotics. We have since separated her from her sisters and have her living alone until she is feeling better. Ever since we took her out the other three are trying to figure out who is at the top and bottom of the food chain. They have gotten more bold about their chasing and have taken to cornering each other and squeeking very loudly and for longer periods of time. Today two were standing on their back legs and grabbing at each other and squeezing for 10 seconds or more, they did not stop until I went over to them and snapped me fingers to get them to stop. So I have two questions: 1 should the smallest mouse ever be reintroduced into the main cage with her sisters? The vet has said that if she is experiencing stress it can cause her to get sick again in the future but I don’t know what kind of quality of life she will have if she is alone. 2. Should I be thinking about permanent separation of the mice that seem to be fighting? Do you think it has gotten to the point I need to consider that. Another option would be to pair them up putting the calmer more docile mouse with the littlest and have the other two stay together.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated, I have not had mice for many years and have never had a group that is this large.
Thank you for reading!

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Playing or not? Empty Re: Playing or not?

Post by CallaLily on Thu 06 Sep 2018, 10:28 am

It’s very normal for them to be trying to figure out who’s who with the change of one mouse being removed from the group. As long as no blood has been drawn and no one is so bullied they’re not able to eat/drink enough, it’s better not to intervene. They almost always work it out.

If blood has been drawn, separate the bully. A week or so in “time out” usually works as they miss having friends and it allows the others to bond a bit more. As with any introduction, reintroduce on neutral ground and once that goes well move them back to a clean cage - so no one has claim over anything. Most of the time this works, though it may need repeating.

I would try reintroducing the quarantined mouse again once she’s well. It’s worth trying because they really do best with friends. I personally don’t separate a sick mouse from her group unless they were really picking on her (can happen but it’s not terribly common). They were already exposed to whatever the sick mouse has and being separated just adds to the stress. But I know some feel differently. 2 Cents

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