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Why have a mouse as a pet?
They are inexpensive to buy and maintain and will not eat you out of house and home. They adapt well to most conditions and best of all, although timid, are easy to tame. Once tamed they make wonderful pets for children and are particularly fond of snuggling up into dark, warm pockets.

Before buying your mouse there are a few important points to Consider. Mice do not enjoy living alone so it is always best to buy two. However unless you have plenty of room and friends willing to take the babies (a male and female can produce about 135 babies a year) it is best to buy two of the same sex. As males tend to fight each other two females are the ideal choice.

It is possible to buy a commercially produced mouse house or alternatively you can build your own. It must be very secure (if there is a way out a mouse will itnd it) and built out of strong enough material that a mouse cannot gnaw through ( forget the old shoebox). An old fish tank is an ideal choice.

Mice become stressed if they do not have enough room. A single mouse must have an area at least 20 cm long and 10 cm wide. Therefore as you acquire more mice, their house must also increase in size. The house must be kept in an area protected from wet or cold weather. Mice require a smaller house within their cage where they can sleep and go for security. Remember, if building your own cage to make it secure against the family dog or cat. Mice are very active little creatures love toys. Spinning wheels, ramps, ladders and hollow logs will help turn your mouse house into a mouse paradise.

It is easy to feed mice because they eat almost anything! However the best diet is a mixture of mouse pellets and fresh fruit and vegetables. They need to be fed daily and old uneaten food should be removed. Fresh clean water should always be available. Mice teeth continue to grow throughout their life, so give your furry little friends apiece of hardwood to gnaw on.

Health and Handling
When buying a mouse check to see whether the dealer's cages are clean. Check that the mouse's coat is glossy, its eyes are bright and teeth and ears clean. It should be plump but not fat and should move freely and uninhibited and not jerk along nervously

Mice will bite you if scared and should therefore be handled as early as possible. Always pick them up by the base of the tail and place them in the palm of your hand. Be sure to hold them securely but not tightly. It won't take very long before your mouse feels safe and secure with you. If you can get your mouse to eat in your hand then you can be certain it t is relaxed and happy.

As long as you buy healthy mice, they are fed and housed well and treated gently and with respect they will provide you and your family with years of enjoyment.

Further Information
  Books - Mice A Complete Pet Owner's Manual

Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia

Last Update: 13/03/07 21:31 Views: 14508

OzPetShop - Pet Products, Supplies and Accessories