You are here:

Mice/Pinky making clicks


QUESTION: Emergency! I adopted some pinkies which were going to be used as snake food and tried nursing them by hand. I have an older female mouse which I thought might be a good surrogate mother since she is really calm, but I squeaking later and show a pinkie all covered in blood, I then realized she has been bitten on the right side of the face and under the left arm. I separated the pinkies, and tried to clean the bleeding one, I am not sure how much damage it took or if it will survive.

ANSWER: Dear Fyre,

Chances are it will not make it. There is nothing you can do other than simply taking care of it- keep it warm and dry, nurse it minimum every two hours, etc.  There is an address to a YouTube page with ten videos about how to raise a pinky, in my profile. Watch all of them. The woman who made those also rescues pinkies from feeder bins.

By the way I disagree with the idea of "rescuing" pinkies from feeder bins. Yes, that mouse will have a good life. But people's lizards will not eat fewer pinkies. The feeder breeder will breed more pinkies, causing more suffering and putting more money in his pocket. Besides that, the mouse itself has not been bred for health, longevity, or temperament the way pet mice are. So the mouse you have may not even be as happy as the pet mouse that you can get.

Actually it is best to go to a private breeder and not support pet store breeding at all-- or even better, call around to rescues and see if there is a pet mouse who actually needs rescuing-- but certainly this is harder with mice than other pets! If you let me know where you ate, I might be able to find a breeder near you.

I hope this little one makes it. I do not know if you left the others with the mouse. If so, you can nurse this one back to health, and later on take your hands and roll the stinky litter, probably from the corners, in them. Then rub your hands on the baby. Take mom out and put the baby back in with the others.

If you decided to take them all away from her and nurse them by hand- it is a big job. Of course you have to do this with the injured baby anyway until it heals.  You must truly do it every two hours around the clock. I am not sure if the woman who made the videos said two or 2-3. If she was nursing them only every three hours that could be why she only had a 75%  success rate. It makes a difference. And truly around the clock. Mom mouse nurses every 30 minutes.

I am sure you won't try this again :). But once you take on a pet, you owe it your all, even if it is extremely inconvenient.

Best of luck and health to all of them-- and you. Do let me know what happens



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: The bleeding stopped I started feeding it kitten formula and electrolytes every hour so far. My male mouse Nathan who I raised from a hopper and is very trusting with me saw me feeding the pinkie. So I put the pinkie by him and he started licking it clean then puffed up and allowed the baby to warm under him. So are the pinkie looks alright. It makes clicking noises when I pick it up to feed, don't know what that means though.

ANSWER: Dear Fyre,

With some real mousie love it will do much better! Male mice make such good dads. A friend of mine just had a mother mouse die when the pups were about 2 weeks old and the dad took over and chewed up food and put it in their mouths! Don't expect that, though. That was a dad who was in the cage when the mother died.

The clicking noises are happy sounds :)

Squeaks n giggles,


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Nathan appears to be sleeping and puffed himself up to gather the pinkie under there. He also licks the pinkie a bit but sometimes the pinkie squeaks, then I saw a bite mark near on the ear that wasn't there before. The pinkie is still with Nathan since I haven't seen him bite when I am there and he appears to just be licking. He is fine with the pinkie being under him, he even moves to cover the pinkie if it crawls away and puffs up. The pinkie does sometimes makes a loud chirp as opposed to a clicking noise. I am just concern if he was licking too hard since he is still young and was never a father before.

Hi Fyre,

Your guess is as good as mine on this. It is definitely possible to lick too aggressively. I myself would leave the pinky there, and take the chance. Better than it being all alone and unhappy.

I hope it works out :)




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.