Hello there, everyone! Welcome back to Le Rat des Villes! The last article certainly packed a wallop! My inbox has been full of replies for both sides of the argumentative coin and I couldn’t be happier. I certainly appreciate the fact that people are keen on making their opinions known. This means that they are taking my discussions to heart and are willing to share their two cents on the matter.
In other news, my inbox has also been receiving several other questions about Mercedes. She is still very much alive and I have been a bit of a bad pet owner since she’s getting a little on the portly side. A mouse, despite being so utterly adorable, is still an animal and will need certain things in order to remain as healthy as they can be. That being said, I would like to share with you guys some tips and pointers that I picked up along the way about caring for a pet mouse.
If you are imagining Jerry—who is always after cheese—in your mind, it would be best to banish that thought now. It was one of the biggest shocks of my life to find out that mice are actually lactose intolerant. This means that feeding them cheese would be a very bad idea!
So what can they eat then? Usually, pet stores will have specialized food that you can buy in bulk for them. If you cannot find any, hamster food will do. If you prefer to have them eat something more organic, you can try feeding them grain, bread, and even fruit. Just be mindful of the portions. Also, be reminded that mice eat A LOT. So you need to make sure that they will always have food available for them.
As for water, I found that they can be dehydrated quite fast so it would be important to make sure that they have a drip bottle they can use.
Mice need to stay active. A lot of mice owners make the mistake of not giving them physical activities or worse, giving them a hamster wheel. Hamster wheels are good for hamsters because they don’t have any tails that they need to worry about. Mice have tails and they can be caught rather easily on hamster wheels.
When I want Mercedes to get a bit of a workout, I have her go through the maze that I built for a project. While it is no longer imperative that she finds the proper end point, she can still spend hours going around the maze and getting the workout she needs.
Mice need a nice and spacious cage, if you can afford it. Suitable space comes with proper ventilation so your mouse doesn’t die because it can’t breathe. Small quarters also make for an anxious mouse. If they are anxious, they can lose all their hair and even die.
I found it best to think of building your mouse shelter like you would think of an accommodation on a luxury vacation. It should have everything you need right there without having to go anywhere else.
Mice, if taken cared of properly, can live to around 2 to about 3 years. Despite any wishes for them to live as long as certain breeds of dog, alas, this isn’t so. Despite their short years, they can be pretty solid companions if you treat them right. They’re affectionate and incredibly intelligent. Just remember the tips above and you’ll be sure to provide a pretty good environment for your pet mouse to grow.
Would you ever consider getting a mouse as a pet?