Friday, August 10, 2018

the unexpected guests


We often have extra animals in various stages of rehabilitation. Both of us have a tendency to stumble across animals in need, or they hear us coming and throw themselves in our path. We raised an orphan duckling who even grew up to deliver us various ducks in differing states of injury or illness. This time the extra houseguests arrived in a more in-house sort of a way. 
When we had to move I promised the boy he could have pet mice. It had been a dream for years and despite my warnings of how much work they are to keep, he remained determined. He desperately didn't want to move house again and this was something positive I could give him. Long discussions about the ethics of keeping animals in cages were had but eventually we added Monster and Longtail to the family. 

Not long after we moved them to a different room they started acting super weird. I didn't think much of it but checked on them late one night to find a handsome wild mouse IN their cage. Mr Mouse had had the best week of his life with high-class food AND two lovely ladies. Turns out domestic mice are bigger than wild mice. The latter being able to squeeze through some of our mouse cage bars. Sure enough, within a week Longtail was looking decidedly round. Fast forward a few weeks: we had seven mice. Sigh. 

We had homes lined up for the babies and they were getting lots of gentle handling but days after their eyes opened the wildness asserted itself and that was the end of cuddles and a potential life as a pet mice. Mr Mouse's wild genes triumphed, the babies were definitely wild. 
We're left with the dilemma of how to wild-mouse-proof a mouse cage. Any ideas let me know. 

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