American Fancy Rat & Mouse Association

This article is from the WSSF 2013 AFRMA Rat & Mouse Tales news-magazine.


Sick Pet Mouse

Teri Esteban, Castaic, CA, e-mail
QI have become a little desperate for advice regarding my pet mouse. I have a mouse that seems to be suffering from some sort of upper-respiratory infection; however, it is chronic so I’d like to rule out the possibility that it may be something else. CC (that’s her name) was a feeder mouse and currently is just about 1 year old. She began sneezing when she was about 2 months old. Our local vet prescribed Baytril and it seemed to help, but not completely. Her condition continued to worsen over the months and she began clicking. The vet prescribed Doxycillan, and again she seemed a little better (very little, so I’m not sure if it actually helped or if it was a coincidence). She does not sneeze as often now, but her clicking has been joined by terrible wheezing, and she breathes as if she is panting and possibly struggling to catch her breath. She does not run in her wheel, but she does move about her very large habitat, stopping to rest regularly. She eats and drinks well and continues to groom herself. I have considered that it may be allergies. I have moved her cage to different rooms, changed bedding types and brands, removed her bedding completely and replaced it with polar fleece fabric, changed her food, removed all food except plain cooked brown rice, bought an air purifier for her room, and none of these things seem to help. Her condition lessens and worsens throughout the day and the vet has put her back on the Baytril, but she says there really is nothing else we can try. I do not want CC to suffer, but before I make any drastic decisions, I would like to confirm that there is nothing else that we can try.

I was told about Tylan, but I’ve been having some trouble finding the Tylan/Tylosin. I’ve been able to find it locally as an injectable, but not the powder. A place right down the street recommended Duramycin-10, which they have in stock. Any thoughts on this product? I’ve been continuing to give her the Baytril. Should I stop the Baytril for a few days, or keep it going until I can get the Tylan? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

ASorry to hear about your mouse. Unfortunately, feeder mice are not bred for health and many are sick when you buy them (there are many viruses that cause respiratory problems). It sounds like you have tried everything (medicating, changing bedding, etc.) with no relief, so don’t know if Tylan would help when the Baytril cannot (medication can’t cure a virus). Also, with the age, one year is old (average is 1–2 with 1 being average for a lot of mice).

You need to talk to your vet about trying Tylan as she would be able to tell you how it compares to Baytril. You should continue the Baytril until you talk to your vet. As far as the Duramycin-10, that is tetracycline hydrochloride, that again you can talk to your vet about.

Your mouse’s quality of life does not sound good and needs to be taken into account along with her age when it comes to any decisions on trying another medication. You’ve gone to great lengths in doing everything possible to help her and give her a good life so I understand not wanting to give up. Karen Robbins *

August 6, 2015