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I expected my mice to start bickering for dominance at some point and I think its started. They where 8 weeks old on Saturday.

I know its quite common for brothers to have to be separated so am keeping an eye out for actually fighting but tbh I don't know what I'm looking for.

They roll around and bicker over food which I guess is normal. Though on a few occasions I've felt I've had to stop them so have opened the cage door and let them know I'm watching which normally stops it.

I've not noticed them baring teeth and neither of them have been hurt but surely there are signs that they should be separated before blood is drawn?

They still sleep together and groom each other but sometimes there behaviour makes me a little uncomfy- like I have to watch just incase.

Do you have any key signs for when things are getting too heated?

They're my first mice so it is possible that I'm just worrying over normal playing behavior but I thought it was worth checking with some pro-micers :p ... yup, just made that up lol
 

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I had four brothers who lived together, and their behavior was very similar to what you are describing. Although it's not really "playing" and more of a display of aggression for dominance over food or territory, you don't need to separate them if the mice are all pretty much the same size (therefore can defend themselves) and there is no blood.
 

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I think the general rule is no blood, no foul.

My girls squabble sometimes. From the noise they make, you'd think someone was losing an eye (it's almost always over a bit of food)... but no one ever gets hurt and they all pile on top of each other and go to sleep afterwards.

I don't have as much experience with bucks but as long as they're not hurting each other and the group dynamic is holding (ie none are getting bullied mercilessly), I'd be inclined to leave them together. If they squabble a lot, you're risking ears getting nicked and stuff though, which might be a problem if you intend to show them.
 
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