You are here:

Mice/rescued and wild mouse questions



Thank you for being here with such informative information and videos. I successfully raised a pinky, a wild mouse, I named Peanut. I nearly lost him from severe bloat with a hard abdomen at a week old. Milk of magnesia,electrolytes and lots of tummy massages saved his life.

I have a few questions;

I was wondering if you could  help identify the type of mouse he is? (I can send video) His mom looks just like the Florida Cotton Mouse. Like a picture I saw on the Internet but we can't be sure.

We captured Peanut's mom with her other baby and took care of her while she raised it. We took the baby and put him with Peanut at about 3 weeks of age. He was so plump and round that we called him Walnut. Peanut had a way to go to catch up in size but he's pretty much there now. They play together and they adore each other. I am hoping that does not change as they get older as boys. Walnut has a tendency to bite, he's done it twice and won't hesitate to strike at me unless I have something for him. He will eat from my hand, I can touch his back but he's not thrilled about it and he doesn't run from me. I have yet to pick him up. Do you think he could be as tame and social as Peanut?

We were going to release mom but found out that she had had 3 more brand new babies. They must carry embryos or something and we certainly didn't expect that. So now she is raising her 3 babies, they are about 2.5 weeks old. She is a wild mouse, she is calm but she is very shy. We thought it would be best to release her to back to the wild. Do you think the babies could survive or should be released with her? If so, at what age? I am not interacting with them except to provide for their needs. I appreciate your opinion.

Since we have the adult mom, she appears healthy, takes very good care of her babies, eats, drinks, etc, I am now a little concerned with what I read about disease. Is there a time period where you can feel safe or know there is no disease in feces, urine, or parasites. Not sure what type of parasites they would carry and if it's one that can be seen.

Anyway, I appreciate any feedback you can give me.

Dear Ruth,

I am thrilled that you brought back Peanut from such a dire condition! The videos aren't mine; I should make that clear.

I can't do any more to identify Peanut and his family that Google it or look on Youtube. A Cotton Mouse is a type of Field Mouse.

The disease that some wild mice carry is hantavirus, and it is deadly. It is also very rare. If you have a Cotton Mouse, there is no risk. These are the critters who can cary it:

If you do have one of these mice, check out how many cases there have ever been in your state:

There was a very recent outbreak in the cabins at Yosemite, so ask the mom if she has been sight-seeing lately :)

When you read further on the CDC site, you will read some very dire instructions to practically how to wear a hazmat suit if you live within 100 miles of a mouse. Remember, they don't want to be sued. Also, they write things like "scientists surmise that" you can get it through a bite. That means it has never happened.

You can also get a mouse tested for hantavirus.

I doubt that Walnut will ever be as sweet as Peanut. But you can keep trying; he will tame somewhat.

Mice mate immediately after birth. This is why she was pregnant again.

You should release mom and the babies back into the wild, if only because you need to separate the babies before they begin mating. I feel that it is fine to keep a wild mouse in captivity if it is happy as a pet. But you have the others, which may be enough mouse pets; and you know she can survive on her own. I would suggest releasing them at about 5-6 weeks.

best of luck to them all!

squeaks n giggles,



All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts




I can answer questions about raising mice and caring for them as pets, with knowledge from my 38 years of having fancy mice as pets. I have NO MEDICAL TRAINING and you should take a sick mouse to the vet; but if you simply can't, I will try to help you. I LOVE PHOTOS!!! I ALSO LOVE UPDATES! Let me know how the little tyke is doing later on, for better or worse, especially orphans. It also helps me to help the next person. Please first search first: use 'Natasha Mice Mouse' with whatever else your question includes. Or check out these links: **** YOUR FIRST MOUSE (my video; rough draft): **** TEN VIDEOS ON RAISING ORPHANS: **** SEXING MICE: **** And some GREAT MOUSE INFO SITES:


I have had mice for 40 years (since I was 5!). I raised them when I was a child but now I keep all females, and never fewer than three so that if one dies the others are not devastated, because they have each other.

I run Rats and Mice are Awesome on Facebook. The official name is Rats are Awesome.

B.A., M.A., M.A. in Linguistics: Yale University and University of Connecticut

©2016 All rights reserved.