Animals in Research

Mouse Igloos to Promote Natural Behaviors and Safe Social Housing

Location: USA
Group: Rodents
Species: Mouse

Plastic igloos, such as the one pictured here, provide mice the opportunity to carry out natural behaviors like concealing themselves. They also help animals manage social issues that commonly arise in mouse colonies. The igloos provide breeding mice a place to build their nests and protect their pups. The clear red plastic allows them to be observed by caregivers without disturbing them. It also allows the mice to feel safe and secure. Sometimes male mice will be overly aggressive and cause injury to their cage mates. In the picture shown here, an aggressive mouse was previously moved to another cage. An igloo was then placed in both cages. Here, the animals have been reintroduced into a new cage with an igloo and closely observed by their caregivers to ensure compatibility. As a result, the igloos give the submissive animals some separation and permit these mice to be socially housed safely.