What do I need to buy for my mouse?
Before you bring your mouse (or mice) home, you will need to have a few essentials ready, such as:
- A cage
- Bedding and litter (soft papers, not sawdust)
- Food and water
- Cage furniture and toys
- Pet-friendly cleaning products and disinfectant
Handling your mouse
Your mouse will need taming from a young age, and you want to be able to get to the stage where he doesn't feel threatened when you try to handle him. When you start getting your mouse used to being handled, be very careful and avoid hurting them — mice are very fragile and quick!
If you have a baby or young mouse, start off with gentle strokes across his back, until he is used to the presence of your hand. When you feel he's become comfortable with being stroked, see if he will come towards your hand by offering him a treat. If he's happy to come towards you, then try to pick him up. Always approach from the front, and gently scoop him up into both hands from either side. You should never hold your mouse from the tip of his tail. You might want to sit down the first few times you hold him, just in case he gets a fright and tries to scurry out of your hands. This way, there will be nowhere for him to fall.
Cleaning your mouse's cage
You will want to keep on top of cleaning your mouse cage as they can be quite smelly due to the fact they urinate a lot. Spot cleaning will be required several times throughout the week, to replace badly soiled areas of bedding and to clean up corners of the cage used for urinating. Food bowls and water bottles will need emptying and re-filling each day so that your mice have access to fresh clean supplies.
Once a week you will need to thoroughly clean the cage, replacing all dirty bedding and litter at the bottom of the cage. You may wish to mix in just a tiny amount of bedding from the previous week so that your mice can smell it and not feel a stranger to their freshly cleaned home.