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Do Mice Make Good Pets, And What Cage Do They Need?

What are mice like as pets, and what sort of cage do they need?

By Carol Lawton
Posted: August 13, 2009, 5 a.m. EDT

Q: Is a pet mouse a good pet to have? I have a cage that my guinea pig is living in right now. I was planning to get mice after she passes away, but I don't know if it is the right kind of cage.

A: Like most small animals, mice are wonderful pets if it's the right pet for you and your family.

When choosing a small pet, it's very important to do a lot of research and put a lot of time into deciding what you want and expect from your pet, then choose a pet that fits those needs and expectations. If you want a pet that is going to be excited to see you every time you walk into a room, then a mouse or hamster might be a disappointment. But if you want a quiet pet that is happy in a fairly small space and enjoys occasional interaction but doesn't require it, then a mouse could be perfect for you.

When it comes to housing, a guinea pig's needs are very different from a mouse's needs. Your guinea pig is probably housed in a cage with widely spaced wire that a mouse could easily walk through. A pair or trio of female mice (my recommendation when keeping mice as pets) will be much happier and safer in a 20-gallon tank with a secure, ventilated lid, and lots of toys and hiding places.

See more rat and mice expert questions and answers>>

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Do Mice Make Good Pets, And What Cage Do They Need?

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Reader Comments
I've had mice as pets and they were the sweetest, most lovable little ones I've ever had the privilege to take care of.
But in the beginning it can take time and patience to win their trust, and you have to always put their needs first, remembering that they're very sensitive and fragile creatures.
I know alot of people recommend keeping several females together - they do love each others' company - BUT from my experience I wouldn't recommend it. They become so attached to each other and depend so much on each other, that I've had some of my pets literally pine away and die soon after losing their friend. Whereas if they have a close bond with their human friend they need never worry about losing them.
Alicia, International
Posted: 4/11/2013 5:02:29 AM
It can e hard to convince people that tanks are best, because little meece can get through such little spaces!
Asa, Wisconsin, WI
Posted: 3/25/2010 2:43:58 PM
That's very good advice! I hope da questioner heeds it or there mice WILL get out of that cage and their home will be in the bedroom... and if there's a cat in the house?..... disaster. Mice can squeeze through the tiniest of holes.
Colleen, Susquehanna, PA
Posted: 8/18/2009 10:57:11 AM
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