Lucy mouse started having respiratory trouble sometime last night (Tuesday night) and appeared to be getting a little better. Her issue was something distressing her which I could not identify or immediately treat. All I could do is hold Lucy mouse, often holding her with Ethel mouse in hand as well, and trying to calm and comfort her. Lucy was still quite willing to eat offered breadcrumbs and appeared to be getting enough fluids. This morning she was still having trouble but seemed to be much better than last night. I held her for a bit and then went to do more morning routines. I came back in the afternoon and had the deep down feeling something was not right. I found Lucy mouse, still quite alive, breathing hard and making little squeaks. But it was the look in Lucy mouse's eyes that told me something else. I took her out and held her and often caught her looking up at me with goo-goo eyes when she was not cuddled against my fingers. I knew it was not going to be too long. After a bit of time Lucy mouse started having a panic-like reaction, trying to get out of my hand and crawl up my arms. I gently held her in my hands so she would not harm herself anymore than she would if she was thrashing around on her own. Eventually she gave several great heaving breaths and then was still. I held her for a while and then prepared her for the journey.
Abigale mouse had be very lonesome since Lizzy mouse's parting. I went to Ethel mouse, who was looking around for Lucy mouse, and took her out to Abigale mouse's cage. While the mice were busy with their ritual smell-and-greet, I took soiled litter and bedding out of Abigale's cage and placed it though out Ethel's cage. When everything was prepared I put them both into Ethel's cage and after some initial shrieking about "that's my wheel!" from Ethel, they both settled in. I watched Abigale mouse trying to put her head under Lucy mouse's head and willingly allow Ethel mouse to groom her. I hope this will work out for them.