Raising Little Heathens

Critters Page 2



Now, mice on the other hand are NASTY! They bite, they're smelly and they eat holes through everything. The males fight with each other all the time.

I started sharing my life with an indeterminate number of mice quite by accident. In October, I bought three small, nice white mice for Lilith’s pre-hibernation supper. I had miscalculated and she was already down for the count. She wouldn’t eat again now until April.

I put the mice in a vacant aquarium to see if her appetite would perk up one more time before her winter nap. I felt they should at least be as comfortable as possible, so I gave them a basket to live in, newspapers to shred and gourmet cereals to eat.

A week passed. Lilith slept on. Two of the mice looked pregnant.

After a month, I had about 20 mice. I moved the lot of them to a larger terrarium. I was getting a bit nervous because Lilith wouldn’t wake up and eat for months. I couldn’t separate the babies from the mothers, and I did have several aquariums left over from my tropical fish phase.

I couldn’t leave the habitats bare. I put in a pretty, little house. It was ceramic, had several rooms, and was sort of California mission style architecture. I gave them some branches to climb, oak moss and dog fur trimmings for nesting, and more paper to shred. I kept the large terrarium on the table next to my bed so I could watch them living their busy little lives while awaiting sleep.

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