When it comes to our mice, we all love nothing more than to treat them. Be it with lots of love and cuddles, toys, or tasty tidbits of food, we just can’t resist spoiling them. This often, however, is not a good thing despite our best intentions. The foods that they love and we give them, you see, are often simply not suitable. Can Mice Eat Peanut Butter is a question that we have been asked many times.
So can they? Let’s find out.
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My Mouse Loves Peanut Butter, Can They Eat It?
Peanut butter, believe it or not, is certainly on the list of foods that we should not be giving to our mice. This is despite the fact that they absolutely love it, and will even actively seek it out. The reasoning behind this, however, is not just purely to do with peanut butter not being part of a healthy diet, but rather that it can kill them!
It sounds nuts right, pardon the pun, that food like peanut butter could actually cause the death of your mice but believe me when I say it’s not. You see, peanut butter is, as you probably already know, a gooey and goopy foodstuff that can prove difficult to swallow.
For humans this is (usually) no problem, we can always take a drink, cough it up, or even vomit. However, for mice, this isn’t the case and peanut butter can get stuck in their airways causing them to choke. Mice you see, like all rodents, lack the ability to vomit. In fact, they cannot even feel the need to do so by experiencing nausea.
Why Can’t Mice Experience Nausea Or Vomit?
The lack of ability to vomit or experience nausea, it was found by researchers, is all down to physiological and neurological constraints. For example, the muscles in the diaphragm and stomach are reduced and not structured well for the act of vomiting even if they wanted to, which they don’t.
As for nausea, well scientists discovered that there is less activity regarding this in the brain stem of mice. When compounds were given, that would induce nausea in other animals mice responded significantly less. Nerve, mouth, throat, and shoulder activity was virtually non-existent, suggesting mice lack the brain circuits for vomiting.
What Other Foods Shouldn’t Mice Eat?
Peanut butter, of course, is not the only food that is not suitable for, or could even possibly kill your mice. There are many that should be avoided and these include:
- Uncooked beans
- Citrus fruit
- Carbonated/fizzy drinks
- Wheat Lettuce
Whilst the majority of these foods will cause problems such as stomach upset, loose stools, and diarrhea, others, as already mentioned, may cause serious illness or even death. Peanut butter is, of course, one of them but here are a few others.
Chocolate – Though it is pretty much unresearched, it is believed that chocolate is toxic to mice. This is due to it containing theobromine which definitely is poisonous to them. Whilst the ‘chocolate is bad’ theory does go untested, it is probably best not to risk it and to just not give mice this food.
Carbonated/Fizzy Drinks – Fizzy drinks are probably not the first thing that would spring to mind when you’re looking to treat your mice. However, if they do you should certainly refrain from taking it any further than thought. The gastric system in mice is not equipped to allow them to pass wind or vomit at all, so internal gas cannot be expelled and so can be fatal.
Milk – Much the same as cats and dogs, cows milk will cause mice, and other rodents, health problems. This is mainly due to most rodents being lactose intolerant. Should you need to hand-rear a baby mouse, a milk replacement should be used.
Cheese – I know, I know, every TV show, cartoon, and advert etcetera that contains mice will inevitably show them nibbling on cheese. However, cheese really is not good for mice as it can cause an upset stomach. Also, and yes I was as shocked as you on hearing it, mice don’t actually, in general, like cheese.
So What Treats Should I Give My Mice?
There are many safe and satisfying morsels out there that can be just as tempting as forbidden ones. Experiment with these eleven and see which ones your mice like the best.
- Garden worms (ethics allowing)
- Pasta (raw and cooked)
- Sunflower seeds (only a few, once in a while)
- Dried herbs (garden/mountain mix from a pet store)
- Choc drops (rodent specific)
- Boiled eggs (a small amount)
Want to see which tasty treats we feed to our pet mice?
Can My Mice Live On Treats Alone?
Absolutely not! Treats should be just what they are, a treat!
The majority of a mouse’s diet should be made up of a high-quality pre-packaged food mix that you will be easily able to source from a local pet store or online. These should contain a good combination of both seeds and vegetables which contain a lot of nutrition for your mouse.
You can also mix your own foods in bulk to save some money if you wish. However, if you do, you will need to be careful to create a healthy and nutritious blend.
When it comes to actually feeding your mice there is no need to weigh out how much you are serving them. Mice do not tend to overeat and will leave what they do not require now for later. You should, however, be careful that they are not only eating the more fatty and tastier food that you have served as they need a balanced diet. Feeding them once in a period of twenty-four hours, evening preferably, along with their occasional treat should suffice.
How often should you feed your pet mice?
You can stick to feeding your pet mice small portions and often. But like we mentioned above you don’t need to worry about strict feeding time scales.
Pet mice will feed 15-20 times a day and will only eat what they want and what they need. These are one of the only pets that will not over eat. They feed at their own will and take small amounts of food often throughout the day.
What’s the best shop bought pet mice food?
There are many different brands of pet mice foods on the market today and thanks to online store like Amazon the variety that you can have delivered straight to your door overnight is huge.
We use two types of pet mice foods for all our mice.
Our first choice for older mice is Vitakraft Vita Smart Food. VitaSmart Rat/Mouse is more than just another high-quality pet food. It’s a super-premium range specially designed to support complete health and well being.
It contains Dha Omega 3’S; Antioxidants; Complexed Minerals & Probiotics which not only helps with healthy growth but also development. It also helps to optimize health and wellness during middle age and maturity. Hence the reason we feed our older mice this brand of food.
It’s available on Amazon, Click here to read genuine customer reviews and see the latest prices.
The second food we use is Higgins Sunburst Pet Mice and Rat food. Again this food contains Probiotics and also includes Dha Omega-3.Assorted fruits & veggies. This product is made in the USA and is made to the highest standards. We feed this to all our mice and rats that are younger as it is easy to eat with the grains being nice and small. This makes it suitable for all sizes of rodents.
We purchase ours online on Amazon, mainly due to the fact that we get free next day delivery being prime members. Click here to read customer reviews and check out the latest prices.
Conclusion: Can Mice Eat Peanut Butter?
We hope we’ve answered the question if mice can eat peanut butter or not. If you’re wondering why people ask this question I think it comes from pest control companies that use peanut butter to attract mice into their traps.
Is it because mice like the taste of peanut butter? No, It’s because the smell of it attracts them into the traps.
There are a plenty of safer foods to feed your pet mice. Ones that they will love to eat and will have many more health benefits compared to peanut butter.