Want to know – Can baby mice survive without their mom if they’ve been abandoned for some reason and left to fend for themselves?
Baby mice are very vulnerable when left to fend for themselves. It depends just how young they are, but chances are they will not survive without their mom’s – but there are some things you can do to help.
If the mice have just been born they will need some care within hours to stay alive, so you need to act quickly.
If their eyes are open and they have fur they are likely 11 or so weeks and older. At this stage, they are easier to look after but still need your assistance.
There are a few main things you will need to do to help orphaned mice survive. These are; providing warm and safe shelter, feeding them, and stimulating them to pass urine and poop.
If you’ve come across some abandoned mice, the first thing you need to do is scoop them up safely and carefully check them for any obvious injuries, laboured breathing, and so on.
If you have any concerns or don’t think you can take care of them, take them to a vet or pet rescue centre.
It’s not worth getting stressed or struggling. It’s not an easy task caring for baby mice, but it’s incredibly rewarding if you’re up for it.
There are a number of reasons why we need to help orphaned or baby mice:
Sometimes a female will have a litter too large, and it’s necessary to separate one or more of the mice to ensure they live.
Some females can become aggressive towards their young or reject them. Again, you’ll need to intervene if either of these is happening.
You may find mice abandoned for some reason. I’ve heard of people finding mice on their doorstep, in a box or bag in their shed, somewhere in their homes, and so on.
Stimulating Baby Mice to Pee and Poop
If a mother was looking after the baby mice they would lick their private areas to stimulate them to pee and poop.
By using a damp cloth, cotton pad, or similar you can replicate this sensation. Do this when you first find the mice, and after every feed.
It’s easier to show you than explain in words. This video should help:
Feeding Baby Mice
Ideally, they will have fed on their mother’s milk for at least the first 48 hours. This milk is called Colostrum, and it’s rich in nutrients and antibodies that babies need in those first hours to build up their immune system.
It’s best to check with your pet store or an exotic pet specialist to see what they recommend depending on the age of the mice.
They will likely recommend some formula, or a kitten/puppy milk replacement. You’re going to need a small syringe to feed babies, some patience, and to feed them fairly often throughout the day.
How Often Do Baby Mice Need to Be Fed?
You should be keeping a close eye on the mice and acting as per their needs or under the guidance of a vet.
As a general rule of thumb, however, here is a table outlining how often you can expect to feed baby mice.
Feeds Per Day
Frequency of Feed
Every 1-2 hours and once overnight
Every 3-4 hours and once overnight
Every 4-5 hours
You can introduce crushed mice food blocks
Crushed mice food blocks and start introducing other foods
Giving Baby Mice a Nice Nest
All you need is a heating pad and some materials. An old t-shirt or blanket is perfect for making a nest they can snuggle up in.
A heat pad is very important to help keep the mice warm. Just set it to low and keep it under some of the bedding so it doesn’t come into contact with their skin directly.
Keep all the mice together, make sure they can’t escape or crawl away from the nest, keep an eye on them as often as possible and I’m sure they’ll be fine.
That’s all the basics you’ll need to know about helping orphaned mice survive and stay healthy.
As long as you have the time, patience, and plenty of love to give, I’m sure you’ll do just fine if you’re caring for oprhaned mice as their new mom!
I have kept pet mice for a number of years and always had a fascination with these interesting, fun little creatures.
I'm always looking for new and interesting mice related information and will always help other mice owners where possible.