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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've never had mice before so its a bit new to me.

I have two 6 week old male mice (brothers). I know there's always the chance that the guys are not going along so I'm keeping a close eye on their behavior.

I got them on Sunday and last night I noticed that they steal food off each other ALL the time. there's loads of food but they still do it. The 'alpha' brother ends up pinning the other one down and cleaning his ears :/

Neither of them look bothered about it so I'm wondering if this is more play than arguing.

I'm sure that there will be a power struggle as their in a new environment etc but just would like to know what to look out for really so I can intervene before anything gets serious
 

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As they are brothers and (I assume) have not been bred from, you might be ok to keep them together.
If they start fighting you will not really be in any doubt about it as it can be very savage, so if you think they are just playing then they perhaps are. Washing each other is not a problem.

A struggle for dominance is perfectly natural and will also happen with does, it does not necessarily indicate the need for seperation, so long as the Alpha and the Beta are happy to accept their roles.

You will need to watch closely and monitor their behaviour though as it could change at anytime, especially after sexual maturity. Don't take any chances.
Also, if you choose to breed either of them, they will not be able to live together again.

xx
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
they've not been bred from and I dont plan on letting them unless they have to be separated tbh.

Guess I'll keep watching them and hope they settle down. Have only had them for 2 days so their still settling in.

Do you think me being able to handle the beta (Ari) more than alpha (Janco) will have any effect on their relationship? Ari is very trusting and spent an hour asleep in my sleeve the first night we got them. Janco is very confident but nibbles my hand (kinda tickles actually) then runs off.

I want to start handling them more but am concerned that I should give them a bit longer to settle in.
 

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Just a question: do you have any female mice anywhere in your home? I've read that if two brothers smell a female, they will often start fighting viciously.

Otherwise, it is true that does do this too. :) One of mine started out displaying her dominance by humping her cage-mate.
 

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I've twelve boys living together just now and there are regular sessions of rough housing :cry: Thankfully (touch wood) nothing serious, no bites, scratches or blood so far and they live in the same room as their two mums, two aunts and 6 sisters but you need to keep a close eye on them. I check mine every night to make sure that they haven't caused any damage to one another and also check the cage for any signs of blood from bites etc that I may have missed. I just hope that they will stay together or at least in trios.
 

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Just make sure the dominant one doesn't keep the other from food or water or SLEEP. A mousie can die without a mark on him from too much stress and deprivation. If you frequently find him on top of the water bottle, that may be a sign of trouble. a litle scuffling does no harm, though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ari seems quite good at sticking up for himself when it comes to food- he's a propper little fatty.

I think a lot of Janco's 'issues' may be down to him being scared. Whenever I pick him up he freaks and poops everywhere before hiding in my hair and not coming down. He's ALOT calmer with my boyfriend though he still wont sit in his hands.

I'm thinking he may just be taking his fear out on Ari who is very calm and relaxed (I was tickling his tummy last night- very funny!).

They seem ok however I will defo keep and eye and also check the cage for those other signs,

thanks for your help :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
you know what, since I've stopped handling Janco he doesn't attach Ari at all :/

Maybe I smell funny haha
 
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