If cute and furry rodents are up your alley, then a domestic mouse may make a good companion for you. Before you start looking for one, however, first learn the ins and outs of the wee guys. Diet is a sensible place to start. Domestic mice require foods that are made specifically for mouse consumption and not for hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs or any other animals.
Domestic Mice Basic Diet
When thinking up a mouse's diet plan, begin with commercial pellets or blocks. Head over to your nearest pet goods shop and look for a mouse and rat formula. If you have any specific questions, do not hesitate to speak to a veterinarian beforehand. Read the labels for all of the food products, and pay close attention to the ingredients. Make sure the mix doesn't exceed 4 percent in fat content, and that it includes a minimum of 18 percent fiber and 16 percent protein, indicates the ASPCA. Ensure that a domestic mouse always has plenty of food available right in front of him. Mice are foraging animals, after all.
Fresh Food Items
Domestic mice also do quite well when given a steady but very small stream of fresh vegetables and fruits along with their typical chow, according to the Humane Society of the United States. Some examples of fresh vegetables and fruits that are beneficial for domestic mice are blueberries, cilantro, apples, cauliflower, bananas, broccoli, turnip greens, peas, carrots and celery. Slice these fresh items up into tiny bites and allow your mouse to eat them on a once a day basis. Half of a single teaspoon is an appropriate portion size. Never allow any ignored food items to linger in your mouse's cage for longer than a couple of hours. Spoiled fruits and veggies are a no-go with mice.
Not all foods are safe or healthy for a domestic mouse. For instance, lettuce can trigger stomach upset in the tiny rodents -- and the unnecessary headache of diarrhea. Walnuts, garlic, rhubarb, onions, raw beans, chocolate, raisins and grapes are also dangerous to domestic mice, so never allow yours to eat any of these things under any circumstances. Always check in with a veterinarian before you bring any new additions into your mouse's diet.
As bizarre and icky as it may sound to human beings, mice are coprophagic animals, the RSPCA indicates. This entails the consumption of their own fecal matter as a way of taking in crucial nutrients -- think folic acid and vitamin B12. If you notice a mouse nibbling on his own droppings, do not be shocked. This behavior is in no way unusual in mice, and actually is 100 percent beneficial to their health.