You are here:

Mice/My mouse it sneezing


I have 2 mice I brought from a local petshop nearly a year ago. After cleaning their cage (in the bath with some white vinegar) I noticed one of my MICE was wheezing. This is the first time this has occurred.I have only ever used paper bedding and apean wood shavings.and clean the cage out 1 to 2 a week.its the middle of winter where I live and I do my best to keep them warm ( away from Windows,blanket over cage,lots of threaded tissue paper and heater) but I have no idea what have caused the sneezing and how to treat it and how to prevent it from happening.I thought of separating my MICE so the other one doesn't get sick but don't wanna stress them out. The mouse that is sneezing has bright eyes and looks healthy.Also where i live everything is VERY exspencive and especially the vets also I don't wanna stress them out going all the way to the vets when it could be something so miner, is there anything I could do to help my MICE without taking them to the vet? What is going on?
Please help!

Hi Charlotte,

If the sneezing happens immediately after cage changes, it could simply be a result of inhaling vinegar fumes or dust from fresh bedding.  Make sure you are rinsing away all chemicals completely, and letting new bedding settle thoroughly before reintroducing them to the cage.

If the sneezing is happening every day, over the course of the day, I would recommend giving both mice antibiotics in their water.  Upper respiratory infections may be common, but they are definitely not minor, and are both highly contagious and can be lethal.  URIs can take several days to show, so chances are her cage mate already has anything she might have.  Sometimes illnesses can be brought in by wild mice, which wouldn't be terribly surprising if it's chilly outside and critters are trying to get somewhere warm.  In any case, fast action with an antibiotic should do the trick and clear things up for her.  A vet is always best, but I understand that sometimes the expense prevents us.

I'm not sure what antibiotics are available over the counter in your area.  If you can, try your local pet shops to see if you can find tetracycline (look in the fish section, especially), or you might be able to find Baytril online (enrofloxacin).  Both of these are general antibiotics that should target a wide range of illnesses.  I cannot currently advise on how to give enrofloxacin, as it is pretty hard to find in my area, but let me know if you get some and I would be MORE than happy to ask a peer for dosing advice.  I do, however, have a link describing how to administer tetracycline in the water bottle:

Hopefully this helps, but please let me know if there is anything else you need or if anything needs clarification,


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts




I can answer questions regarding mice as pets, mouse behavior, color and coat genetics, breeding techniques, and general health questions. I can help with caging and setup, nutrition, social issues, and what to do in most mouse emergencies (such as unplanned litters, injuries, fighting, etc.). I can also assist with questions pertaining to orphaned mouse pups, weaning litters, and questions of mating and birthing. I cannot answer questions about exotic or wild varieties of mice such as spiny or pygmy mice. *****FOR EMERGENCIES, anything requiring immediate medical intervention, PLEASE take your mouse to a professional veterinarian or wildlife rehabilitator who works with mice as soon as possible! IMPORTANT RESOURCES: Raising Orphaned Mice: Orphaned Mice Videos: Natasha's Your First Mouse: General Mouse Help: Mouse Info and Exotic Breeds:


I have enjoyed the companionship of mice nonstop since 2004, and spent a year caring for them in a lab where I learned a great deal about their breeding, social needs, and health. I spent a few years breeding them, specifically working with albinos, marked mice, angora mice, and satins. My education never stopped - I am learning something new every day from current and well-established research thanks to the wonderful folks at the Jackson Laboratory, as well as from my wonderful mousey friends online. I also love learning from my terrific questioners here on AllExperts - you folks keep my passion for these amazing animals alive and well!

East Coast Mouse Association - expired, American Fancy Rat and Mouse Association - expired

Partial University for a B.S. in Microbiology, Partial University for a 2-year degree in Veterinary Technology (RVT cert), C.E. classes in pathogens, aseptic technique, genetics, and applications

©2016 All rights reserved.