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My former baby deer mouse

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My former baby deer mouse Empty My former baby deer mouse

Post by SarahAdams Sun 31 Jan 2021, 8:49 pm

He (or she?) was presented to me by my cat. He was the dearest little thing, Love  so smart he was able to survive loose in my house for 5 days and elude 3 cats living there. I missed him a lot when I eventually let him go to live a true mousey life.

Yes, that is a quarter.

My former baby deer mouse HzsSE9T

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Post by River Sun 31 Jan 2021, 10:30 pm

He's absolutely adorable. Hope he's built up a nice little territory for himself somewhere! His survival instincts will do him good. <3

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Post by SarahAdams Mon 01 Feb 2021, 10:15 am

He had no fear of me and would sit on my shoulder while I cleaned his cage, but he seemed sad in captivity with no other mice. I kept him for a couple of months until he got a little bigger and the weather improved.

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Post by cerial Sun 01 Aug 2021, 12:45 am

Thats how I got into keeping these as pets.

I caught a baby deer mouse shortly after moving into my home back in December of 2019.

Not wanting to throw it out into the cold I grabbed a 5 gallon fish tank and kept the little girl. Same deal after a week all she would do is lay around.
So I bought a 10 gallon and 2 fancy mice. Spring came and I would catch mice in a live trap making sure they were girls before letting them go down the road after a few days of feeding.
I had between 3 to 5 in the 10 gallon and it would get crowded. So I bought another 10 gallon and cut 1/4 of the bottom off then grinded it smooth allowing them to climb from the lower to the upper tank.

During the summer I found a cheap 55 gallon long tank someone previously used fish. I broke the bottom completly out of the 10 gallon replacing the bottom with a mesh top flipped with a hole in it for a ramp to pass through then set the upper 10 gallon on that.
At this point I bought 3 more fancy and were catching deer mice off and on.
I had a deer mouse I named Tom. He was a male with a black spot of fur on his butt who I would keep in a 10 gallon set next to the 55 gallon. I would release Tom in my barn 100 or so feet away and all through November. I would feed Tom for a week as a pet before releasing him. A few days if not the next day Tom would be sitting in my 2 liter live trap and I would keep him for another week. I caught Tom 3 times and the 4th time I caught what I thought was tom and it turned out to be a pregnant female. Well before winter she gave birth to 3 boys and 4 girls. I kept them in a 10 gallon with the intent of releasing her in the spring. But once they were all big the 10 gallon was not going to cut it and into the bigger tank they went.

Spring came and I found some old single pane windows at a auction. I built a cage out of the windows then lined the bottom with those stick tile things. Before adding a board and a section of hose so  all the tanks could be connected.

I bought 3 more fancy and one became sick when I took it back I bought 2 more. The deer mice had a litter of 4. I took 3 more 2 month old fancy from someone moving and recently had a liter of 2 deer mice.

I have trained the deer mice at this point. I wont let them out of the tank. I can leave the lid off and while they will peek they know if they go up onto the edge I will push them bsck inside. I will feed them by hand and pet most of them. But still respect that they are wild and would not hesitate to jump off a desk.

So know that one little deer mouse while cute can lead to wanting to keep more of them.

At this point im done building the enclosure. They are happy and I plan on keeping the number around 20 eventually replacing the deers with more fancy.

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Post by SarahAdams Sun 01 Aug 2021, 12:17 pm

So know that one little deer mouse while cute can lead to wanting to keep more of them.

I get it. Deer mice are charming little creatures! I was very tempted to keep my adorable little mouse, but I knew he wasn't domesticated and didn't seem happy, maybe probably that was because he was alone.

I had to either go find more mice or release him. It wasn't easy watching him scamper off, so tiny, into the field I chose for him, but it was for the best in my situation.

You've made some impressive enclosures! If I may make a suggestion I would put more hides in the tanks. They needn't be fancy or costly, i.e. little tea boxes with a couple of holes cut in them and plenty of bedding, tissues, etc for the mice to build their nests inside them. Mine stuff their hides so full I'm surprised they can still get inside. Laughing

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Post by cerial Sun 01 Aug 2021, 11:54 pm

There are hides I just needed to zoom out.
My former baby deer mouse 20210812




I fill a 10 gallon tank 4 times. But after a week between them filling the hides and the stuff flattening out it it drops down to a inch or two.
After that first week I pour in 2 more 10 gallon tank fulls of bedding. They will be moving it around for the next 3 days.

After the bedding was added.

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Post by Dee67 Tue 03 Aug 2021, 7:05 am

So cute @SarahAdams !! I live trapped and released 4 last year before we got our basement windows caulked. They were all adults who came in singly, no babies thank goodness. One fellow I caught twice, he had only 3 legs. I put them out in our shed with food and a 'safe house', so they could readjust to being outside before moving on. I do no suggest ever keeping wild mice.

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Post by SarahAdams Tue 10 Aug 2021, 11:44 am

@Dee67 wrote:I do no suggest ever keeping wild mice.

Another reason not to is the kerfuffle over the Hantavirus, even though the virus is weak and the danger is very minimal it has killed people.

My brother, who has moved to farm country, regularly gets deer mice seeking refuge in his house in the winter. Since I now have a couple of extra bins, I told him any he traps this winter can bunk here until spring. I would just give him the bins but his wife is deathly afraid of mice.




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Post by Dee67 Tue 10 Aug 2021, 5:35 pm

@SarahAdams I'm more concerned about how most wild mice would be extremely unhappy in captivity, but, yes, Hantavirus and numerous other zoological diseases as well. Figgus bit me when he was new and I had a bad infection and had to get a tetnus shot.

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Post by SarahAdams Tue 10 Aug 2021, 8:12 pm

@Dee67 wrote: @SarahAdams I'm more concerned about how most wild mice would be extremely unhappy in captivity,  but, yes, Hantavirus and numerous other zoological diseases as well. Figgus bit me when he was new and I had a bad infection and had to get a tetnus shot.

Oh, no! Naughty Figgus! One of my boys bit me severely a few days after I got them all - he was afraid and it was my fault - but I just washed the wound and had no problem with healing. These mice are the only pets I've ever had that have bitten me, the little devils.

If anyone is going to keep wild mice (especially deer mice) for any period of time - until the weather improves, as I did, etc - I strongly suggest a regimen of hand-washing before and after handling them or anything in their enclosures.

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Post by Dee67 Tue 10 Aug 2021, 8:24 pm

@SarahAdams Definitely! And yes, Figgy is a naughty boy 😆 He was new and nervous then though, I put my hand in his cage...big mistake. Now he doesn't mind at all and he's never bit me since. I have owned lots of ferrets and I would occasionally get bit by them too, usually breaking off a tussle between rivals, always my own fault, but I always got infected then too, not a good immune system I guess.

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