What Do Mice Need In Their Cage? 5 Things Mice Needs

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Mice are tiny animals with a lot of personality. Some may be uncomfortable with the idea of mice, due to their association with wild mice, as pests. 

Pet mice are actually a different breed altogether; one created for both beauty and their sociable, docile nature. These are aptly named Fancy Mice.

While wild mice tend to be timid, sometimes even aggressive, fancy mice are quite gentle and friendly. 

What Do Mice Need In Their Cage? 5 Things Mice Needs 1

To ensure your pet mouse has everything it needs in its cage to live a happy life we have written a guide for you entitled: What do mice need in their cage?

Read on to learn what you’ll need to purchase for your pet mice.

Stock Your Pet Mouse Cage Properly

Like any animal, mice have simple but specific requirements for their care. If you are one of the many considering adopting a Fancy Mouse, you will first need a cage. Mice are very small, and when loose in the house they can get lost easily. 

A metal or hard plastic cage, with close-together bars, is recommended for mice.

Of course, a mouse cage should never be empty! A mouse cage must be made to reflect the habitat of a mouse naturally. 

These Are 5 Things Your Pet Mouse House Needs

1. Mice Need Bedding for Comfort and Hygiene 

Bedding is very important in a mouse cage! It is a key source of comfort and hygiene. As far as comfort, bedding mimics a mouse den and its brush and leaves.

Paper and aspen wood are two of the most highly recommended bedding types. Both are affordable, and both are comfy and eliminate odor fairly effectively. 

pet mice bedding
We use Carefresh
Read customer reviews
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Paper can be made into bedding in a few ways. It can be torn into strips, put through a paper shredder, or made into paper pulp. 

The latter is a bit harder to make, but still simple. To create paper pulp, start by tearing paper into bits.

Pour hot water, nearly at a boil, onto the paper bits and allow to sit overnight, or 8-10 hours. Strain, dry and crumble for your mouse cage.

Pro tip: when it comes to using paper as mouse bedding, avoid ink! This is toxic to mice and can make them sick. Use ink-free paper only. 

Aspen wood shavings can be purchased at most pet stores. Never use aspen shavings from a lumberyard, as these have not been cleaned for dust and mites; these can cause harm to your mouse, clearly.

Medium to high-quality aspen shavings at the pet store will do wonderfully. 

2. A House Will Help Your Mouse Feel Cozy and Secure

Fancy Mice may be well domesticated, but they still retain some instincts naturally. One of these is to search for a den, or mouse house. Having one of these in their cage will help your pet mouse feel more secure and cozy. 

pet mouse cage
This is one of our favorite pet
mouse cages available
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Mouse houses can be homemade or bought at the pet store or online. Homemade houses are the most affordable option, of course, but they will become dirty.

Homemade houses require replacement frequently, as mice soil the paper and chew.

A purchased house is more pricey but often proves most convenient ultimately. It comes to personal preference, really. 

Homemade mouse houses can be made from old butter containers, cardboard boxes and the like. Just ensure there is a proper roof and entrance. 

When buying a new cage for your pet mouse or any other small pet ensure that it is spacious and has plenty of things to keep them entertained within the cage.

Pets love to play just like we do and they also like to hide and have fun.

Providing them with the best possible place to live will mean they live a happy life and you’ll get more out of keeping them in return.

They will be happier pets in general and will also have better health.

3. A Water Bottle Will Keep Water Clean for Your Mouse 

A water bottle is advised for most rodents, as they tend to burrow and scurry. This can result in a dirty water bowl all too quickly, as they kick up bits of bedding and the like.

A water bottle is the best solution, with a steel spout and ball. This will keep the water clean, and accessible readily. Like this one available on Amazon.

A metal spout will stand the test of time, as it is hard for mice to chew. Replace the water in the water bottle frequently, so your mouse has fresh water every day. 


4. Quality Food is Key to the Health and Happiness of Mice

Food should serve a couple of purposes for mice. Firstly, sustenance; mice should eat fibrous, nutritious foods; and secondly, their dental health. You see, crunchy vegetables are something mice utilize to maintain the health of their teeth.

Like many pet rodents, including guinea pigs, the teeth of mice will always grow. They depend on things with a hard, crisp texture to grind their teeth down and keep them in check. 

pet mice food-keytee
Kaytee is a really good food
for pet mice.
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Mice should be fed mouse pellets rather than a loose mix. This is because mice are naughty, and will pick and choose the bits that are their favorite.

The result is leftover food, which can be messy, and mice even commonly become malnourished and obese.

Pellets offer all of the necessary nutrients in a solid block. Mouse pellets can be supplemented with mouse-safe fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, broccoli, cabbage, peas, apples, pears, peaches and melons, to list a few. 

Mice may also consume eggs, mealworms and a select few other proteins. While mice primarily eat greens, they are omnivores, technically. 

5. Your Mouse Will Need a Wheel For Exercise 

It may come as no surprise to you that mice are very active. They need a wheel to be truly happy. It will allow your mouse to run whenever the whim takes them, and get

What Do Mice Need In Their Cage? 5 Things Mice Needs 2
Available on Amazon.
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plenty of exercise. This contributes greatly to the quality of life of your mouse, and their overall fitness and longevity. 

Place the wheel on the side of the cage. Pick one that is made of metal, ideally. A hard plastic wheel is also okay.

Any other plastic should not be used, as it is too easy for mice to chew. Choose a wheel without rungs, as mice tend to get caught in these. 

Not all exercise wheels are suitable for pet mice so choose carefully. You will need to ensure the wheel is stable and secure within the cage.

We have known wheels to fall over and hurt your pet mice.

Pet mice are very hardy creatures but you’ll still need to ensure they have a safe and secure home to live in.


  • What size cage to pet mice need? Provide your pet mouse with the biggest and best cage you can. The more room the better – with lots of places to hide and play.
  • Should I buy a metal or plastic cage? Most cages sold today are suitable but we like metal cages that have coated mice proof plastic on them. These don’t rust even if your mouse chews at them.
  • Can pet mice live in hamster cages? Yes, hamster cages usually have plenty of ledges and places for your mouse to play. They make great pet mice cages.
  • How much room do pet mice need? Two square feet per pair of mice will be fine.
  • How often should I feed my pet mouse? In the wild, mice will eat up to 30 times a day. Feed your pet mice small portions 3-4 times a day with a treat once a week to help their teeth. Hard chewable snacks designed to help their teeth are recommended.

Conclusion: 5 Things Your Pet Mice Needs

Once your mouse cage is all set up, you can move your mouse in and watch them explore. You can hide a few mouse treats to encourage this.

Your mouse may hide in their mouse house initially upon entering a new cage. 

Once they feel more secure, your mouse will probably start to look for any treats and begin to burrow. After a brief look-over, it won’t take long for your mouse to realize they have the perfect home.

They will discover favorite spots and test out the exercise wheel. 

Wild mice are not especially accustomed to safety. Fancy Mice may have been bred in captivity, but they retain that deep, mousy desire for shelter against the elements, for a cozy nook.

Along with a bit of care, a cage with these 5 items will help your little pet live their best mouse life

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