What Do I Do About
My Mice If I Have To Go Away?
Make as many preparations as you can before you leave.
In other words, mix up all their food yourself and clean them out thoroughly.
You don’t know if the person who’s checking on them will do
a good enough job, so try and make it as easy as possible for them.
Leave all supplies in the same, easy to find place.
If you have to, label the supplies with what they are and how/when to
use them. Make sure you have enough ‘in house’ so that your
mouse-sitter will not run out in your absence. If you are going on a longer
trip and you think you may not have enough room for extra supplies, give
your mouse-sitter a detailed list of what to buy and where from to avoid
Make sure there is someone competent to administer any medications.
Even if the person is experienced or seems to know how to do it, leave
written instructions for them including dose, method and time to give
medication. It may be the case that you have to leave the mouse needing
medicines with a different person who is more confident giving medication,
or more reliable (remembering/able to do it at the correct time every
Make sure that the importance of daily checks and handling is
Explain that the person’s responsibility is not only to top up food
and water and perhaps clean out the tank, but to really ensure the mice
are well and happy. Try to ensure that the mice are handled every day
while you are away, or at least every other day with non-handling days
meaning the mice are allowed 20 minutes playtime in their runaround balls
outside the tank. Stress the importance of keeping the mice occupied with
toy changes. Daily checks should be insisted on to make sure that the
mice’s health is not declining unnoticed.
Try to get a mouse-sitter who is experienced with mice and can
Children may put the wrong mice back in the wrong cages if the person
supervising them cannot tell the difference between your bucks and does.
To avoid this, insist on supervision at all times and allow mice from
only one tank out at a time to avoid mix-ups. This will also help someone
unfamiliar with your particular mice to keep them in the right groups.
Leave emergency contact details – i.e. the number of a
In case anything happens or a mouse gets ill during the time you are away,
leave all details of your vet with whoever is looking after the mice.
This will include name, address, phone number, emergency phone number
and surgery opening hours. Make sure you let the mouse-sitter know that
you would rather they went to the vet for a little thing than left something
alone which could progress into something worse.
Mention any special considerations and also write them down as
Special considerations might include a certain diet or allergy that one
or more of the mice have. It could also be a ‘don’t’,
such as ‘don’t let the obese mouse have many sunflower seeds
or chocolate drops as treats’. If any of the mice need special handling,
e.g. because they have an injury or are pregnant, be sure to mention this.
Leave a number where you can be contacted in an emergency.
If there is something that needs your knowledge about your mice, or your
consent, you will be glad that you could be reached. Most people have
a mobile phone for emergencies and if not, the number of the hotel where
you are staying could be left as a contact point.