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What would you do?

Okay, so as I've mentioned before I currently have a lone doe, called Honey. Her other cage mates died not too long ago. I'm looking for new mousey friends for her.

So I have a choice, and I want to know what you guys would do in this situation cause I can't make up my mind.

Option A: A breeder I have been in contact with is planning a litter which would be born in about 3 weeks. So by the time they're ready to leave we're talking 8 weeks time. I have seen pictures of her current mice, including the parents, and previous litters. These are gorgeous, well-bred mice. Big, chunky, healthy mice with massive ears and gorgeous colours. It's been a long time since I've had such well-bred mice, and I'd love to get my hands on some of these. Not just because they're so pretty, but because in my previous experience, well-bred mice have better longevity and become tame more quickly.

Option B: Although my heart is set on option A, I think that it's a long time for Honey to have to be alone. So my second option is to get some less well-bred mice, that could be available much sooner. To be honest, this is probably what Honey would prefer. I'm sure she doesn't care about how well-bred her cage mates are. 

So really, it's comes down to whose needs I put first... Should I just get some mice asap, even if they aren't well-bred, or should I wait longer in the hope of having potentially healthier, better pets? What would you do?

Thanks :)
Hamster: Archie
Mice: Honey, Violet, Flora, Fauna and Merryweather.
Rainbow Bridge: Daisy, Peach, Ivy, Penelope, Hazel, Ruby, Clover, Peanut, Minnie, Ginger
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Comments

  • SummergirlSummergirl Lemming
    Posts: 46
    I would do both! She needs companions now, so I would get one or two. Then, later when the babies are ready, get some more and keep them together. in a second cage. As the older ones pass away, you will have some to put the ones remaining with. This works for me. I have 3 cages of different ages, so the ones who are left can have a mate, who is already quarentened (sp?) and ready. That way, they aren't left alone after her mate passes away.
  • AnnBAnnB Mouse
    Posts: 936

    I'd just go with your instinct (and the mice available to you).

    I've kept over 50 mice and I can honestly say that it's pure luck when it comes to longevity. It's true that mice from a breeder may be more tame because they are often well handled but mice at rescue centres are also usually well handled and a neutered male from a mouse rescue may live longer than any females, regardless of their breeding.

  • KawaiiKawaii Lemming
    Posts: 247
    I'd get honey some friends as soon as possible.

    Proud owner of 2 chinchillas and a dwarf hamster

    (chins for the win!)

     If I'm not active I have probably forgotten my password (again)....

  • MouseLoverMouseLover Lemming
    Posts: 188
    Thanks for your thoughts guys, think I've come up with a great solution :D

    I was struggling to find any mice that were available now, except for ones that were very far away, and I don't drive. But I managed to get in contact with the breeder that I bought Honey from, and it turns out he has some 14 week old girls, and he's willing to let me have one. I'm going to get one girl from him, and then when the other mice are ready I will get 2 more :)

    I'm also really excited by this because this mouse will be a cousin of Honey's, and a while ago I read an article that said that mice are able to recognise relatives they've never met, due to scent markers in their urine. So I wonder if these girls will be able to tell if they are related  >:D<

    Super chuffed now, best of both worlds, yaaay :D
    Hamster: Archie
    Mice: Honey, Violet, Flora, Fauna and Merryweather.
    Rainbow Bridge: Daisy, Peach, Ivy, Penelope, Hazel, Ruby, Clover, Peanut, Minnie, Ginger
  • AnnBAnnB Mouse
    Posts: 936

    Great news, I'd certainly be interested in finding out if it's true that they recognise relatives. Let us know how you get on.

    I once had a little black terrier who wasn't good with other dogs unless they were little black dogs like him.

  • MouseLoverMouseLover Lemming
    Posts: 188
    I think this is the article I was referring to:
    http://mentalfloss.com/article/69161/how-mice-recognize-relatives-theyve-never-met

    I found it really interesting :D

    AnnB that's so funny about your dog. Dogs can be weird when it comes to other dogs. As a black labrador owner, I've had multiple dog owners tell me their dog hates black dogs :-?
    Hamster: Archie
    Mice: Honey, Violet, Flora, Fauna and Merryweather.
    Rainbow Bridge: Daisy, Peach, Ivy, Penelope, Hazel, Ruby, Clover, Peanut, Minnie, Ginger
  • SarahnashSarahnash Lemming
    Posts: 317
    Sounds a good plan for both mouse and Mum. Hope all goes well.  How will you introduce them?  Being a newbie to mice I have gone through just 2 sets of introductions and neither was easy.
    Mum to rattie boys Charlie and Bosley and wild boy mouse Wills.
    Mice in my heart and mind - Jill, Kate, Eve, Sabrina, Dylan, Kris, Abby, Kelly, Tiffany, Natalie, Alex and house mouse Harry Houdini
  • MouseLoverMouseLover Lemming
    Posts: 188
    I've not had any problems with introductions before, so hopefully I wont have a problem this time. How big are your groups of mice? I usually keep 3s, so typically introduce 1 mouse to 2 others. Perhaps things are easier with small numbers?

    After quarantine I put the cages very close together, usually about an inch or two apart, so that they will be able to smell, see and hear each other (but not close enough that they can grab a tail through bars or something). Then over the next week or two, I switch toys from the cages (unwashed) so that they can smell each other more, and I also swap bedding from inside their nests. 

    When I think it's time for the mice to meet, I introduce them on neutral territory (e.g. dry bathtub, kitchen counter) and if everything seems okay then they go in the cage. The cage and all the items get a thorough wash to remove any scent marking. If I have any new toys I'll put them in the cage too. I usually only have one "house" available for them to begin with - I dunno how much difference it makes, but I think it kinda forces them to sleep together, which is good for bonding. I've not had anyone left out in the cold. 

    I always do this on a day that I am free all day, and do it in the morning, so that I can keep an eye on them all day til as late as I can, just in case. There's usually lots of squeaking and a little chasing, but that's about it. One group literally sniffed each other's butts, all went into the house, and that was the end of it. No squeaking or anything. I think I've had good luck with introductions >:D<
    Hamster: Archie
    Mice: Honey, Violet, Flora, Fauna and Merryweather.
    Rainbow Bridge: Daisy, Peach, Ivy, Penelope, Hazel, Ruby, Clover, Peanut, Minnie, Ginger
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