Tips for poor breeders

  • Minimize noise. Keep in the quietest area possible, away from doors, sinks, and heavy traffic.
  • Minimize handling, especially with females close to delivering or with new litters. Stressed mothers are more likely to cannibalize or abandon their young.
  • Keep males and females together whenever possible to maximize breeding and reduce stress. If a male needs to be removed, do not remove him when the female is about to give birth, and do not return to the cage until pups are weaned.
  • Handle mice gently with forceps. Disinfect forceps between cages and change gloves frequently, to avoid spreading scents. 
  • Maximize darkness. Move to the darkest location available, away from exit signs and other night light sources.  Ensure that the dark cycle is maintained once the lights are turned off.
  • Provide nesting materials. Nestlets, kimwipes or other soft, fibrous material provide security and enrichment that may enhance productivity.  See ‘Enrichment’ suggestions in the Mouse room conditions section.
  • Consider changing diets.  Diets with a higher (or lower) fat or protein content, compared to your standard diet, may improve productivity of a challenging strain.