What are Fuzzy Mice?
Fuzzy mice ("fuzzies") are named because they are at the stage just after their fur has grown in. Fuzzies are between 5 days and 14 days, and have formed a full coat of fur, but have not yet opened their eyes. The "fuzzy" mouse phase does not last long, and living fuzzy mice must be able to nurse from their mother.
Fuzzy mice are an important feeder food for growing and moderately-sized rodent-eating lizards. Live fuzzie reptile feeders can be hard to find in pet stores, as mice pass through this stage very quickly. For this reason, fuzzy mice are typically acquired as frozen. Buying frozen fuzzy mice allows reptile keepers to stock up.
Fuzzy Mice Nutritional Composition
Fuzzy mice provide a rich source of protein for rodent-eating lizards. According to the 2002 study, Nutrient Composition of Whole Vertebrate Prey
the nutritional composition of a neonatal mouse is approximately:
45 - 65% protein
17 - 30% fat
Frozen Fuzzy Mice Options
Fuzzy mice for lizards are sometimes sold by small and large sizes. Fuzzy mice feeders are also sometimes sold by white or dark fur color.
Small Fuzzy Mice Age: 6 - 9 days old
Small Fuzzy Mice Length (not including tail): 1 – 1.5 inches (2.5 - 4 cm)
Small Fuzzy Mice Weight (Grams): 3.5 - 5 grams
Large Fuzzy Mice Age: 10 - 14 days old
Large Fuzzy Mice Length (not including tail): 1.25 – 1.75 inches (3 - 4.5 cm)
Large Fuzzy Mice Weight: 5– 7.5 grams
Fuzzy mice for lizards are sold in frozen packages of 10, 25, 50 or 100 mice.
How to Feed Frozen Mice to Lizards
Frozen feeder rodents should not be defrosted in a microwave, as this can leave cold spots in the middle of the rodent. Defrosting slowly in warm water is a better solution. Wiggling a warm rodent in front of the reptile, using long feeder tongs, is usually a successful feeding technique.
Kinds of Lizard Feeder Mice
Feeder mice for lizards are available in different sizes:
- Pinkie mice are typically less than 5 days old, and do not yet have fur.
- Fuzzy mice ("fuzzies") are between 5 days and 2 weeks old. Fuzzies have formed a full coat of fur, but have not yet opened their eyes.
- Hopper mice ("hoppers") are between 2 - 3 weeks old. Hoppers have opened their eyes and have begun to feed on their own.
- Adult feeder mice are 30 days old or more. Adult mice used as feeders come in various sizes, including: small; medium; large; and jumbo.