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QUESTION: Hi Natasha happy new year and hope you had a happy Christmas.

I haven't spoken to you for ages so you probably don't remember my two mice Bambi and Lunar but anyway...

I am a very worried about Bambi, she seems like she's sick and the symptoms seem very similar to what happened to the little mouse I lost Misty (you probably don't remember what happened to Misty but it was basically a more severe version of Bambi's symptoms) I asked you about Misty when she was sick and I think you told me she had a breathing problem called myco and that the vet would put her on baytril, which he did but I very stupidly thought she was getting better and stopped giving it to her and she took a sudden turn for the worst and very sadly died (just to refresh your memory).

Anyway last night I went to feed the mice and I saw that Bambi was just sitting quite still and was breathing heavily and it looked strange. I was very worried about her and when I put her food in she didn't even look at it which is very odd because I think I did mention to you Bambi is a little overweight and she usually loves her food. she also went in her wheel and I thought she might try to run in it because she usually loves her wheel but instead she just sat there and breathed very weirdly. I am very worried about her and even kept me awake last night.

I remember all this with Misty (the symptoms are very similar but Misty was much more severe when she died). The basic symptoms are:

Strange heavy breathing.
Off her food.
Not as active.

I really don't want a repeat of that and especially now because even though Bambi was a trouble maker when I first brought her home because she kept getting into fights and was very lively and hard to handle but now she is very docile and tame and loves being handled and her and Lunar are now the best of friends and I have become extremely attached to her.

We tried getting a vet's appointment but all the vet's are shut because it's New year's day.

So even though I know your not a vet and I understand if you don't know but I just want to know what she's got and how she might have got it because even if it is the same thing as Misty, where did she get it from because I always thought Misty was born with her problem because we only just got her when I noticed the symptoms but Bambi is now 10 months old and it can't be contagious because Lunar seems fine.

So anyway that's all I really want to know

Thanks for answering :-D

Happy New year from verity

ANSWER: Hi,

All rats and mice have an illness called myco. Sometimes something slightly suppresses their immune system and it flares up. Baytril or a combination of Baytril and doxycycline is usually the miracle that antibiotics always have been. But as with humans, you must finish the full dose. It should be 14 days.

I hope you got her to the vet today, poor thing.

Best of luck and health to her,

Squeaks

Natasha

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

QUESTION: Hi Natasha

I took Bambi to the vet yesterday and he gave me some Baytril and he told me to give it to her twice a day for a week. Is that the same as giving it to her once a day for 14 days?

Anyway I was also wondering if there is an easier way of giving it to her because I'm finding it so difficult. Bambi is so lively when she's on me and just wants to run up my arm. I tend to just do like you said and try to get it on her head and let her wash it off because it's impossible to try and get it in her mouth but then I don't want to put her back because I know that they love to groom eachother and I'm worried that Lunar will try to lick it off of her. Could that do harm to Lunar? And even if it didn't then Bambi wouldn't have had it.

I can't put it on a treat because Bambi is too sick to want to eat, even if I try to give her a treat without the medicine, she still doesn't want it.

And another thing, will giving her the medicine make her less tame? Because since I've been giving it to her she's been more reluctant to want to come to me because she thinks I'm going to give her more horrible medicine. Even when she's better will I have to try and re-tame her because she will always associate being in my hand with having to take medicine? or will she just forget about it?

Ok well those are my questions, thanks for answering

From Verity:D

Answer
Hi Verity,

Aww I'm sorry to answer late.

When I have to give a struggling mouse her meds I pick her up a half hour before, cuddle and love for a half hour, then I have a very specific place and method for her med time. I have used a box or my knee but whatever it is, I put the same cloth over it every time, and always do it in the same place (most recently I sat in the hall with the offending cloth on my knee). So that is the bad part-- that setup. That cloth. When that cloth isn't under her there are no bad meds. Then afterwards I hold her for another 15-30 minutes. This way she does not associate coming out to me with taking meds. In fact you will probably develop a very strong bond with her because of all of the extra attention you are giving her.

You are right that you mustn't let her cage mate lick it off. You saw what happened when a Mousie didn't get enough meds :(

You must give it to her twice a day for **two weeks.** That vet is wrong. Vets tend to under prescribe because, well, no skin off their back if you have to come in again. Even if they aren't specifically thinking about it like that. But the mouse gets sick again and then the stress and the cost of the second visit. There should be no second visit. It also worries me that she is that sick and he only used Baytril, but maybe he is right. If she is not noticeably better, or if she gets worse, within three days, she should also have doxycycline or amoxicillin. Some vets prefer one; some the other. They work well with Baytril.

I certainly hope she recovers quickly.

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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