About mice

Are mice suitable for all ages?Mouse

Mice are very sociable creatures and usually fine with children. They do however have relatively short lives so children need to be aware of this. Mice are easily injured if dropped, therefore, small children should be supervised when handling them.

How long do mice live?

Usually 18 months to two years.

Are they friendly?

Yes and very intelligent. They quickly become very loyal and tame but must be handled correctly and never picked up by the tail. As a mouse becomes more trusting it will start to explore, moving from your hands up your arms, and they enjoy sitting in empty pockets!

Can mice be let out of their cage?

Mice can move quickly and can escape so you must be sure that the area you release them in to is completely secure.

Caring for your mice

What you need to know...

  • Mice like company, and do well in pairs and groups, so never keep them singly. Always make sure that your mice are of the same sex.
  • A lot of room is required for males as they can be very territorial.
  • Females can live more closely together as they are very social.
  • Male mice have a much stronger odour than females.
  • You will need to clean out their accommodation every two days as all mice urinate to mark their territory.
  • When picking up your mice gently cup your hands around them and they will settle there.

Housing your mice

You can keep your mice in a tank or a cage. If you use a tank the lid should be close wire mesh ( not mouse sized!) and well fitting, allowing good ventilation. Cages have better ventilation but your mice may well urinate on the bars as they climb.

Whether it is a tank or a cage it needs to be a good size. We recommend a tank over a metre long or a cage of at least 81cmx52cmx52cm. There need to be plenty of shelves, branches, tubes and toys to keep your mice entertained. Solid wheels are great for exercise.

To line the cage we recommend shredded paper or paper pellet litter. Avoid wood shavings as these contain aromatic oils like cedar which can cause respiratory problems.

Feeding your mice

Ideally you should feed your mice complete specialist mouse food which include millet or budgie seed. Mixed corn and sunflower seeds are high in protein and can cause skin problems or obesity.

In small amounts foods such as apple, peas, grapes , carrot, rice, fish, and yoghurt are all fine.

Need more help and advice?

Call the Small Animal Team at Raystede on 01825 880467 or email smallanimals1@raystede.org

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