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Mice/Orphan mouse didn't make it.


QUESTION: Last night when I was feeding mouse I must've gave him too much and caused him to aspirate because he was boumcy and hard to feed. He had just started to open his mouth super wide last night and it was just scary to me.  Then he had about 2 bubbles come out of his nose so I know he got formula in his lungs.  Today he's not doing well at all.  He is still taking his feedings but his movement isn't as healthy as it was and he's just looking so weak.  I don't know if there's anything left to do for him.  Should I continue to keep feeding him even though I'm positive he aspirated.  I'm scared everytime because he didn't do great with the feedings today and I'm scared that he'll just continue to keep getting it in his lungs.  Do you think he's dying since he's so weak and not doing ok with feedings?  What should I do?  I don't live in a town that has any kind of vet that'll do anything to help me with him.  Is it just a matter of time for the little guy.  A few times today I thought he was dead but then he'd start moving around but he's not strong enough to walk and his legs have grown and caused him to be awkward and struggles with movement.  He's still dehydrated and so skinny it breaks my heart to see him struggle like this and I feel like I'm making things harder on him by feeding him.

ANSWER: Dear Aleda,

To be honest, he isn't going to make it. I really hate to have to say that, and a mouse miracle is always possible.. But it would be wrong of me to give you false hope.

All you can do is try to keep him happy till he goes. Keep feeding him. Is the formula warm when you give it to him? It should be (like in the videos). I can't remember how you are nursing him, but if it is not a paintbrush, you need to do it in some way that you can't overdo it. You can even try the corner of a paper towel. Some people even just let them lick it from their hands. Somehow you need to avoid getting it in his nose and lungs. And keep him warm.

Poor little guy. We have no idea how he is feeling, except I'll tell you, dehydration is not painful. It makes you weak and faint. I have been seriously dehydrated and basically I was going in and out of consciousness.

Maybe he will have a mouse miracle. If not, I hope he is comfortable.

sad squeaks,


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

QUESTION: I am sadly letting you know that the poor little mouse just passed away.  I was expecting it afetr your last message so I was with him checking on him and watching him so I could help comfort him when I needed to.  I'm thankful for the information you provided me with this entire journey.  It's been an extremely long 5 days trying to keep him alive and I was suprised at how strong his will was to live. I stated caring for him because I was first guilty since it was my cat that destroyed his home and 2nd because I was just so shocked by it coming back to life when I was convinced it had died. I wanted to share my experience in case you can use it to just confirm that the information you gave me was all correct and by following your guidance this little guy changed in front of my eyes.  It changed so fast from a barely haired mouse with tiny little hands and feet and by today he was actually looking like a tiny sized mouse.  I screwed up and made the mistake of changing from a paint brush to a dropper because I thought it would help with getting him hydrated.  If I wouldn't have changed the fedding method I'm positive he wouldn't have aspirated at all.  I wish I wouldn't have changed but since I can't change what I did I'd just like to tell you that I'm thankful for your advise and that your paintbrush suggestion is the best way to feed him as I'm sure you already know.  I also wish I had followed advise and started him on the pedialyte the first 24 hours since it would have gotten him hydrated right away while he was still strong.  I thought that since he had just been with is mom that he wasn't dehydrated but now I know he needed that. I've learned a lot from all your advise and if I ever encounter another baby I feel confident that I will know what I need to do and how I need to do it since everything you said was exactly what needed to be done.  I'm sharing this with you so that in the future if you have anyone asking for help you might use my story to strongly support your paintbrush method since it wasn't until I changed to a dropper that he aspirated.  thank you very much for helping people like me who have no clue but just want to help.

Dear Aleda,

Call your local vets and shelters and let them know you can raise baby mice. You might get a second chance :) and you will certainly be giving any mouse that ends up with you, a second chance. Vets and shelters do not know where to turn when they are given baby mice.

I am so sorry for your loss. As I said I do not think he was in pain. And now he is happily frolicking "over the Rainbow Bridge" as people like to say.




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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): **** 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

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