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Pet shops???

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Post by lupus_corde Sun 03 Jul 2016, 4:44 am

Hello Everyone! So I was wondering if it would be ok to buy mice from a pet shop. I have heard from many sources that pet shop mice can be unhealthy and have issues resulting in early death. The pet shop I am considering is privately owned and the breeder works in store so I can easily talk to her in person. Does this sound ok? I have been unsuccessful in looking for a breeder online so I think this is the next best option. The mice are right now still with their mother at 4 weeks old and will be sexed in a week or so, the tanks are big and well ventilated. What are your opinions? Smile

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Post by River Sun 03 Jul 2016, 6:20 am

It's totally okay.

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Post by scaredymouse Sun 03 Jul 2016, 6:20 am

All my mice are pet shop mice stock, several from the feeder bin. I currently have two girls who are coming up on 27 months old and they are from a pet shop. But I have also had a pet shop mouse develop a very aggressive cancer and die before 6 months. If you can't find a breeder and the pet store has mice, I would get them. They need homes, too.

I would love to boycott pet shop mice, but my heart bleeds for them.

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Post by lupus_corde Sun 03 Jul 2016, 6:43 am

Thanks for the info guys Smile

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Post by MouseLover Sun 03 Jul 2016, 7:31 am

I agree with what everyone else has said. Also - as someone who has bought fancy show mice in the past, I actually haven't found there to be much difference in longevity between them and your standard, less well-bred mouse. My longest-lived mice were "nothing special" breeding-wise Smile

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Post by CinnamonPearl Sun 03 Jul 2016, 8:30 am

So long as it lines up with your personal ethics, it's okay.

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Post by CallaLily Sun 03 Jul 2016, 10:06 am

I agree with what everyone else has said. Most of my mice were/are pet shop mice, with a few being from a store that sells them as feeders.  Some have been a bit jumpy at first but they warm up. I have had to deal with some tumors and what I consider early deaths but I don't regret getting any of them. They've all been great pets.

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Post by AnonONIagent Sun 03 Jul 2016, 11:20 am

Both of my mice are from a pet store's feeder bin, and are healthy and friendly. So yes, it's perfectly okay. You might get an extra 6 months out of a better bred mouse, but it's no guarantee. Mice are all uniformly short-lived and prone to random disease, it's just that better bred mice are slightly less prone to random health problems that could abruptly kill them.
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Post by MesaMouse Sun 03 Jul 2016, 11:45 am

Ditto the responses left by others. All my mice over the years have come from either Petco or PetSmart: the one difference I've found is that the PetSmart mice have been healthier, were easier to tame and have lived longer (no Petco mouse made it past 15 months and two of my PetSmart girls made it to 24 months with the last one still going at almost 26 months). In my area, PetSmart keeps only a few girls per display tank whereas Petco treats them all like feeders, putting the entire new shipment into one tank -- that may be why the PetSmart girls were easier to tame.

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Post by AnonONIagent Sun 03 Jul 2016, 12:01 pm

@MesaMouse wrote:Ditto the responses left by others. All my mice over the years have come from either Petco or PetSmart: the one difference I've found is that the PetSmart mice have been healthier, were easier to tame and have lived longer (no Petco mouse made it past 15 months and two of my PetSmart girls made it to 24 months with the last one still going at almost 26 months). In my area, PetSmart keeps only a few girls per display tank whereas Petco treats them all like feeders, putting the entire new shipment into one tank -- that may be why the PetSmart girls were easier to tame.

That's because PetSmart has a policy of only selling mice and other rodents as pets. PetSmart's corporate policy prohibits them from knowingly selling small animals as feeders, and only sells reptiles that eat pre-killed food. Some locations go as far as to ban you from buying small animals if you adopt small pets too frequently, for fear that you may not actually be keeping the animals as pets. A lot of reptile owners hate PetSmart for this reason and will not shop there, even for supplies. Petco on the other hand just treats all mice as feeders. Petco, however, does take unwanted rodents in, including mice, and will put them up for adoption (although I think this may not be done at all stores), in which case they too will only sell them off as pets and treat the animals thusly.
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Post by CinnamonPearl Sun 03 Jul 2016, 12:33 pm

Thing about Petco adoptions, though, is that they adopt them out for free, so reptile owners just use them as feeders. I can't believe reptile owners hate Petsmart for acting responsibly. Reptile owners who live feed are some of the worst kinds of people. 

(DISCLAIMER: I'm not saying that all reptile owners are bad!! I know we have a few on here. Please don't flame me.)

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Post by CallaLily Sun 03 Jul 2016, 1:00 pm

@MesaMouse wrote: I've found is that the PetSmart mice have been healthier, were easier to tame and have lived longer (no Petco mouse made it past 15 months and two of my PetSmart girls made it to 24 months with the last one still going at almost 26 months).

My oldest lived so far were Petco mice. Bacon and Cheese, but only to about 20 and 21 months old.  Though Twix and Hash were also from Petco and only made it to around 15 and 16 months. Sad

Hazel is from Petco too and the jumpiest mouse I've had so far. Seren is from Petsmart.

@AnonONIagent wrote:Petco, however, does take unwanted rodents in, including mice, and will put them up for adoption (although I think this may not be done at all stores), in which case they too will only sell them off as pets and treat the animals thusly.
@CinnamonPearl wrote:Thing about Petco adoptions, though, is that they adopt them out for free

This is how I got Daryl.  There was an adoption fee. Though they call it a "donation," it is required. At least at the one near me.  I see hamsters and guinea pigs up there a lot. Sometimes mice and rabbits.

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Post by Bthny Sun 03 Jul 2016, 4:09 pm

All of my mice were originally from pet stores (two were adopted from another family, and two were bought), and they've all been great pets. Mice tend to be disease prone in general, and it's not specific to pet stores, so I wouldn't be concerned about that unless the animals in the store look ill.

From what you've said, the store seems okay, but you'll be able to learn a lot more from the store than I can, so here's some things I'd suggest. Being able to talk to the breeder at the store would be great and should answer a lot of questions for you. I'd recommend asking to handle the mice before buying (and asking if staff handle them), and ask about their return/guarantee policy for animals, even if you're not intending on using it. Check what it extends to (genetic defects, illness, any wounds that were inflicted from other mice at the store) and for how long, and how they'll handle returns. Again, you might have no intention of using it, but it's good to be aware of and can indicate how they treat their animals. It's perfectly fine to ask a lot of questions, especially if you see anything weird and if you're having concerns. People at pet stores do care about animals, so they'll be happy to answer your questions-- it shows you're invested in the pets and that they'll be going to a good home. If you're not comfortable with how the breeding is done or their practices, it's okay to back out.

Ultimately, it really comes down to how you feel about the situation. For me personally, I choose to adopt or rehome first, then look into pet stores and breeders. Although I'm comfortable purchasing mice from pet stores, I won't buy feeder mice because I'm unwilling to support live feeding practices, no matter how bad I feel for the little babies. Before you go to the store, figure out what line you don't want to cross and stick to it. It sounds like this store is a good option Smile Good luck!
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Post by Rodents rock! Sun 03 Jul 2016, 6:21 pm

I got Mickey from PETsMART. He seems to be a really healthy boy. In the past I got a Chinese hamster from PETsMART and he lived a lot longer then their average life span. Where I live, PETsMART is super clean and the rodent enclosures are always clean. Not the case for the Petco in my area. There is an odor in that store and the rodent enclosures are too small and are always dirty. I even called there once and complained to the manager, but nothing has changed. I am going to get a bigger tank there soon as they are having their $1 a gallon sale right now, but normally I don't shop there as I really don't like supporting their store. I'm sure Petcos in other areas might be nice, the one in my area isn't.
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Post by CinnamonPearl Sun 03 Jul 2016, 6:34 pm

I agree Rodentsrock. Petsmart is milds better than Petco in terms of cleanliness. At my Petco, the mouse tanks are always pretty filthy. The wheels are often covered in feces. I don't go to Petsmarts as often as the closest one is an hour away, but when I do, the rodent tanks are always pretty clean. However, the enclosures at Petsmart seem to be a lot smaller than Petco, but then again Petsmart has less mice in a tank at once. There's no right answer, but Petsmart is miles better than Petco. Lesser of two evils.

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