The tame colored mouse comes from the house mouse (Mus musculus). Mice are originally from Asia, but thanks to man they have traveled all over the world and ended up in every corner. The link between humans and mice goes back a long way, because before the era these clever animals were kept as pets.
Head-hull length : 6.5 to 9.5 cm
Mice are active and curious animals that quickly become tame and get used to their caretaker. They are social animals that should be kept together. Thanks to the long tail, they are also good climbers and can keep their balance well. This also helps them to walk well on the hand and because they see depth, they also stay on the hand.
In Western Europe (Mus musculus domesticus) the mouse can be found in buildings all year round. But in Eastern Europe (Mus musculus musculus) also in fields.
Mice live in small groups
Tame and familiarize yourself with the Mouse
Always read carefully before you decide to take Muizen. They are very nice pets that are regularly awake, so that they can also be seen during the day. This can be especially fun for children. Mice are very friendly and curious. They can be shy and quick at first. Once the mouse is on the hand, it can balance well thanks to the long tail, the animals move nimbly from one hand to the other or between the fingers. This ensures that they are easier to handle in the hands than, for example, Gerbils or Hamsters.
New residents should be approached calmly, especially at first. The animals must first become familiar with their own enclosure, feel safe in it before they dare to approach people. Of course there are also daredevils who immediately approach you and are social, but most Mice are a bit shy the first time. Give the animals time and try to make contact calmly by talking to them. Handing over some treats often also works well to gain the trust of the animals.
Housing the Color Mouse
Colored mice are social animals that should be kept together. In the wild they live in colonies with often one dominant male. The best combination is a group of females, males quickly argue with each other about the ranking. It is important that the animals are coupled at a young age. Newcomers are not easily accepted in old age.
Mice need a spacious enclosure of at least 75 x 40 x 40 cm ( LICG ) for two animals. For each additional animal, 20% extra ground surface must be calculated. A good stay gives the animals the opportunity to display their natural behaviour. Mice are very active in the wild, they want to continue to do that in captivity, they don't want to be bored. The Mouse needs an extensive stay with lots of play and climbing opportunities. The long tail allows Mice to keep their balance very well, making them great climbers.
Hamsterscaping is also great fun for Color Mice!
At our home, a good mouse enclosure translates into a spacious enclosure with a lot of challenge and plenty of hiding places. A terrarium is the best choice because of its closed nature. It is important that a terrarium allows good ventilation, so preferably has two grids (top and bottom). This is especially important in summer when temperatures rise above 25°C.
Don't give the Mice a sandbox. Sand is too dusty for the sensitive airways of mice.
Colored mice cannot withstand high temperatures in combination with high humidity. An optimal humidity for mice is on average around 55%. A temperature between 20 - 24°C is recommended and a humidity below between 40 - 60%. You can use a hygrometer to measure these values.
House for a Mouse
Color mice are lucky! because many houses that are made for hamsters also have a good size for mice. Mice are prey animals and don't like to walk openly through the enclosure, if they occasionally come across a shelter where they can shoot away, they already feel a lot safer. Mice like to sleep together, so at least one house in the enclosure must be large enough to accommodate the entire group. In addition, one extra sleeping house or hiding place per Mouse is ideal. The animals like to sleep together, but they should also have a place where they can retreat for a while.
Grass houses are also very natural for Muisjes and the animals really like it because it imitates a natural hiding place.
Mice's urine smells stronger, just like Rats' urine. The animals mark their territory by leaving a drop of urine on everything. This means that parts of the mouse house can quickly start to smell. We therefore recommend using a " Urine Spray" for parts where urine can penetrate.
For wooden accessories it can help to varnish them with clear lacquer. It is not allowed to use just paint from the hardware store because of toxic substances. A special paint for animals is best used for this.
Ground cover for the Mice
It is important that the ground cover is digable for Mice , that is to say that they can make tunnels and burrows in it, which preferably remain standing. This can be achieved by choosing ground cover that is digable in itself or by mixing ground cover to make it digable. An example of an excavatable ground cover is for example the Humus and the Holenzand , but also Cotton & Cotton . A nice mix is, for example, the mix of Cotton & Hemp Fiber, Cotton & Wood Fiber or a mix of Wood Fiber, Hemp Fiber and Hay. Ground covers such as Back 2 Nature are not suitable because the animals cannot dig in them. An ideal height of the ground bed to dig in is around 20 cm.
Like rats, mice have sensitive airways, so the bedding must not be dusty.
Mice are nest builders
Mice are real nest builders. They also like to cover their nest with soft nesting material . Making a nest is therefore part of the natural behavior of a Gerbil. Therefore, always give the Gerbils 15-25 grams of nesting material. Mice nesting material should be nice and soft, absorb moisture and have fragile fibers so that the animals cannot get entangled in it. Materials such as cotton, hemp, toilet paper and hay are ideal.
Mice are granivores (seed eaters). Mice's diet consists mainly of seeds and a small amount of vegetable food in the form of herbs , but also animal proteins. Mice catch small insects in the wild, so it is good if their diet also contains animal proteins.
The mouse's stomach is simple and the cecum and large intestine are not particularly well developed, which is befitting of animals that in nature mainly eat low-fibre foods, such as seeds.
An optimal diet for mice looks like this:
Crude protein: 12.5-18%
An optimal protein percentage for growing gerbils seems to be 16%. A magnesium or sodium deficiency can cause baldness and convulsions in Gerbils.
Dental formula: 1013/1013 (Incisor ratio at the top - bottom = 1 : 2-3) Incisors keep growing
The percentage of crude fiber in the diet must be a maximum of 10% for optimal digestibility and absorbability of the food.
Gnawing material to wear down the teeth
Colored mice have a natural need to gnaw. This is because Mice are rodents and have growing incisors. It is therefore necessary for Mice that they can gnaw on something to wear out their teeth. If mice have too few opportunities to wear their teeth, the teeth can become too long or grow crooked, with all the consequences that entails.
Most Mice gnaw gnawing wood very actively. However, it is a matter of taste and, on the other hand, a matter of need how much the animals gnaw on it. If a Mouse has no need to gnaw because the teeth remain at a good length due to food, hay or other nibbles, then he will gnaw less gnawing wood. It is good to always offer natural gnawing wood so that the animals can always gnaw if they have a need to gnaw.
Dental problems in mice
If you notice that your Mouse is very eager to tackle the food, but then does not eat it, there may be something wrong with the teeth. Drooling can also indicate dental problems. If you suspect that you have dental problems, it is best to contact your vet.
Reproduction of the Color Mouse
Colored mice are social animals, the whole group is involved in the education of the young. The parents take care of the young until they start to become independent from the 18th day.
The female is willing (in rut) and ready to mate every 4 - 9 days. This will take approximately 12 - 24 hours. If a successful mating has taken place on these days, the young are born after about 24 days.
The difference between males and females can be seen in the distance between the genital opening and the anus. This distance is greater in a male than in a female.
Sexual maturity : females after 4 - 5 weeks
Health of the Color Mouse
The most common health problems are tumors, obesity and dental problems. In addition, mice have sensitive airways and are prone to cold and respiratory infections. A draught-free stay is therefore very important.
We recommend that you regularly check the teeth of the animals in order to detect any dental problems in time. A well-balanced and complete gerbil diet is essential to avoid digestive problems.
It is not necessary to treat the animals preventively with anti-parasite. It is not necessary to give extra vitamins with a complete hamster food.
It is wise to consult a veterinarian if you have the following symptoms:
Drooling, moist nose and eyes, protruding teeth, not eating, losing weight, eating foreign materials that are softer than the food.
Bald spots, lots of scratching, scabs, wounds, bumps and lumps
Wet and dirty ass, drinking a lot, falling over, listless, different shape and color of the droppings