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Mice/Baytril does not cure mouse

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QUESTION: About a week and a half ago, I noticed one of my mice acting lethargic -- moving slowly, breathing heavy, shaking a bit when it walked, not wanting to eat or drink, and going off by itself. Later that day, she seemed to get her appetite back and she was back to her normal self. Three days later, the lethargy came back as well as the lost of appetite. Again, by the end of the day or the next day she was back to her normal self. Another three days later though the lethargy returned so I took her to the vet. The vet said although she doesn't see any discharge from her nose she thinks it could be mycoplasma pulmonis. She prescribed 10 days of Baytril and 3 days of an anti-inflammatory. At first my mouse seemed to respond well to it but it was the same pattern -- doing well for 3 days, etc.

She is housed with 3 other mice who get along well and none of which exhibit the same symptoms. I only use dust-free bedding made from recycled phone books.

When I hold her to give her the medicine, she poops (as do all of my mice because they don't want to be held) and it is sometimes very hard.

She still has 4 days of Baytril left after I gave her today's dosage. Should I take her back to the vet?

What could be wrong???

ANSWER: Dear Paige,

Yes, take her to the vet and tell them an experienced mouse person with vet connections says to add amoxicillin to the Baytril.  

To be honest, they should have started with amoxicillin. She is too sick for it just to be myco. You are lucky she has lasted this long. If it is a nasty secondary infection the combination of Baytril and amoxicillin should fix it. She should be on it for 14 days, which is as long as a bottle stays good anyway.

Actually having hard poop now will make the antibiotics less of a problem, since they can cause diarrhea. She should also have some daily yogurt with probiotics but not within two hours of her meds.

Best of luck to her,

Squeaks,

Natasha.

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

QUESTION: Hello again,

Unfortunately I didn't have the $70 for a vet visit but I had $30 to buy some amoxicillin from an online pet store. I bought 250mg, 100 count capsules and 500mg, 100 count capsules. I have been opening the capsules and grinding the granules down into a fine powder. I wasn't sure how much to give her so I just took about 1/4 -1/2 of the capsule and added it to some juice. For about 2-3 days I gave her the 250mg but decided the last day or two to give her the 500mg. She was doing well for 4 days (which is 1 day longer than before -- she was getting lethargic every 3 days) but a few hours ago started exhibiting the symptoms again. Since I'm giving her Baytril, doxcycline and amoxicillin, it's difficult to give them to her at the same time since I end up having to fill the syringe with mostly juice, Pedialyte, etc. and she won't drink it all. She won't open her mouth when I give it to her so I end up having to force feed it and most of it ends up on me or on her belly. For this reason I think she hasn't been getting the amts she needs. I also felt guilty for fighting with her to give her the meds as she hates it and I'm also afraid that I'll hurt her when I hold her neck as she hates that too and keeps fidgeting. I ended up slacking off with it and was giving it to her once a day because of this. I'm at my wits end but I want to save my mouse!

1. Should I continue the 250mg of amoxicillin or the 500mg?
2. What can I mix those nasty, bitter medicines with to make her more willing to take them? (she is EXTREMELY picky)

Thank you in advance.

Answer
HI,

OK I have spoken to a few people and the result is: IF the problem is not the intermittent meds-- and you must absolutely get the meds in twice a day-- it might be an endocrine issue such as diabetes.

Most endocrine conditions need a blood test to identify, but you can actually have  a mouse pee on one of those strips people use to test for diabetes.  

So my advice is get these antibiotics correctly, and if she gets better *and then gets worse*  then the issue doesn't seem to be respiratory. But let's try to get it right first.

So to the amoxicillin. If you mix the 250 mg powder with 5 ml (a teaspoon), or mix the 500 mg powder with 10 ml (two teaspoons), you will have a standard liquid of 50 mg/ml. Assuming the mouse is 50 g, the dose twice a day is 0.04 ml. That is a tiny amount; about a drop.

If you are taking 250/500 mg and giving her 1/4-1/2 of it, she is getting between 65 mg and 250 mg. She should be getting 2 mg. You have been wildly overdosing her. Her system must be going nuts!

That much you can do, right? Don't use juice though. You can mix it up beforehand in a little jar in the fridge but use something non acidic. A very very light peanut butter broth works. With such a small dose you will have no problem. But it MUST be twice a day. For two weeks.

You aren't guessing about the other doses are you?

So as I said, if she gets better and then worse, the issue may be something else. At that point buy one of those Diabetes strips and put her pee on it and see if it turns whatever color it is supposed to turn.

Diabetes is best controlled- maybe has to be controlled-- by insulin as well as diet. I know of several rats with Diabetes so I can get a good idea of what needs to be done. I don't have an answer yet about the other endocrine issues, but it will be a while before you get that far.

I hope the regular meds take care of it. Sorry to make you wait for my answer. I had to talk to vet and vet tech friends.

Best of luck and health to her :)

squeaks

Natasha  

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Natasha

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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): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNK4uqNZTbA&feature=share **** TEN VIDEOS ON RAISING ORPHANS: http://www.youtube.com/user/CreekValleyCritters/videos?query=raising **** SEXING MICE: http://www.thefunmouse.com/info/sexing.cfm **** And some GREAT MOUSE INFO SITES: http://thefunmouse.com/info/index.cfm http://www.rmca.org/Resources/mousefaq.htm

Experience

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.

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

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

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