Kerala

Of mice as pets and making a living out of it

Firoz Khan has 1,000-odd mice under his care.  

Firoz Khan, a pet breeder at Kundayithode in Kozhikode, shocked a lot of people when he started breeding edible worms a while ago. Now, his mice are the talk of the town.

Little did the local farmers or pet lovers know that mice could help one earn a living.

Mr. Khan has been breeding mice for seven years and using them to feed the big birds and fishes in his ‘Khan’s Breeding Centre’ at Kundayithode. But it has been just a few months since the news ‘leaked out’ and ever since he is being approached by a lot of breeders and pet lovers for these mice.

“I had to make sure that I had enough numbers to cater to the demand. I should also be knowledgeable enough to guide them about the breeding process and hence waited to complete my research before letting out the news,” he says.

The colourful lot

Now, he has 1,000-odd mice under his care.

“We have developed eight colour varieties, including coffee brown, chocolate brown, black, white, ash, and silver ash.”

These mice are of a foreign breed.

“Unlike the native breeds that are rather violent, they are gentle and friendly.

They mingle with people very fast and hence are chosen as pets by many,” he says.

Some get a pair from him and breed them.

“I guide them as much as possible.”

Less capital, more profit

He says mice breeding is a low-investment business that yields high profits. “Most of us do not know what kind of food we can provide our pets. Many animals prefer a live prey and mice are the best in that capacity,” Khan said.

The pregnancy period for these mice is 19 to 21 days and a litter consists of 10 to 18 babies usually. They procreate fast, making mice breeding a profitable venture.

Mr. Khan is also the author of two books on pet breeding, while the third is in the pipeline.

All of his family too is into this business.

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Printable version | Apr 20, 2021 2:32:58 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/of-mice-as-pets-and-making-a-living-out-of-it/article33966590.ece

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