Homeopathic Proving of Mus musculus, Common Household Mouse

Ubiquitous Rodent

“It had need to bee a wylie mouse that should breed in the cat’s care.”
– John Heywood, Proverbs (pt. II, ch. V)

This is not a full proving of house mouse. It is only a small preliminary proving with two provers done with the intention of encouraging others to do a more complete proving. The remedy, Mus musculus (Mus-m), was created by Helios pharmacy from a mouse caught by their cat. Each prover was sent a remedy which was a mixture of 6c & 30c. I hoped that it would stimulate a good mix of physical and mental symptoms. I wasn’t sure if I could safely give a lower potency.

I want to thank the two provers and the husband of the second prover. He got a crash course in homeopathy and acted as the supervisor for the second prover. It takes courage to take an unknown remedy. And it takes persistence to see a proving through to its conclusion. I am sure many people will be healed by this remedy as a result of their efforts.

According to the Encyclopaedia Britannica “The rodents, or Rodentia, are the most abundant order of mammals. At present, over a quarter of the families, 35 percent of the genera, and 50 percent of the species of living mammals are rodents. Probably an even higher percentage of individuals are rodents, for they tend to be small animals with dense populations. They are one of the few groups of animals that flourish in close association with men.”

In Lou Klein’s proving of earthworm, Helodrilus caliginosus, he states “The current trend is to potentize intense substances such as venoms etc. for consideration in aggressive and egocentric patients. I found, though, that most people, especially those seeking our help, don’t feel poisonous and aggressive but rather small. They feel as small as a worm, or worm like, vulnerable.”

The mouse is another vulnerable animal. I was inspired to prove it by a client who had the aspect that we classically consider “mousy”. She was quiet, shy, pleasant, nearsighted with round wire rimmed glasses, mousy brown hair, prominent front teeth. One of her chief complaints was bulimia; another was a toenail that kept growing in on the nail bed. She had a history of kleptomania. Unfortunately I was not able to give her the remedy so I cannot claim that any of her characteristics are related to this remedy.

Free mouse
clip art

But it is illustrative of how strongly the mouse archetype has found its way into our culture. What animal has been more intimately connected with mankind for longer than the house mouse? We’ve been living with them and eating their excrement in our food for probably thousands of years. Many people are allergic to their urine. Mice in general are the universal prey; almost every larger predator preys on them. Mice are present in almost every ecosystem on the planet and the house mouse has followed man everywhere.

Just think how many metaphors in our language refer to mice: “quiet as a mouse”, we describe someone who is meek and self-effacing as mousy, “the mouse that roared” refers to a meek individual who stands up for himself, “playing cat and mouse”, we have computer mice, “are you a man or a mouse?”, “not a mouse was stirring”, “she wouldn’t harm a mouse”, “he was afraid of a mouse”, “mouse hole”, nibble like a mouse, as tiny as a mouse, etc. Think of all the literature, fairy tales & cartoons that we have that feature mice: Micky mouse, mighty mouse, Aesop’s lion & the mouse, Lewis Carroll’s dormouse, the Ben & Jerry cartoons, etc. There was a recent popular children’s movie ‘Stuart Little’ and its sequel with the title role held by a mouse based on E.B. White’s book.

The mouse is a universal archetype in human culture. They are an annoying destructive creature in reality. But surprisingly, most references to them in our culture are sympathetic. They are generally anthropomorphized as a character that perseveres and overcomes adversity of overwhelming odds, frequently by clever means. This shows how we empathize with their weakness and vulnerability.

At least as early as Aesop’s fables we have been sympathetic to mice in our literature:

The Lion and the Mouse

Once when a Lion was asleep a little Mouse began running up and down upon him; this soon wakened the Lion, who placed his huge paw upon him, and opened his big jaws to swallow him. “Pardon, O King,” cried the little Mouse: “forgive me this time, I shall never forget it: who knows but what I may be able to do you a turn some of these days?” The Lion was so tickled at the idea of the Mouse being able to help him, that he lifted up his paw and let him go. Some time after the Lion was caught in a trap, and the hunters who desired to carry him alive to the King, tied him to a tree while they went in search of a wagon to carry him on. Just then the little Mouse happened to pass by, and seeing the sad plight in which the Lion was, went up to him and soon gnawed away the ropes that bound the King of the Beasts. “Was I not right?” said the little Mouse.

Little friends may prove great friends.

Origin and Natural History of Mus

“Species of Mus belong to the subfamily of Old World rats and mice (Murinae) in the family Muridae within the order Rodentia. … The evolutionary history of Mus extends 6 million years to the Late Miocene Epoch in Asia, 3 to 4 million years to the Pliocene Epoch in Africa and Europe, and 10,000 to 1,800,000 years to the Pleistocene Epoch in the Mediterranean region. Based upon study of living and fossil species, researchers speculate that Mus originated in central Asia more than 11 million years ago…

“All species of Mus are native to Eurasia and Africa, where they range from lowlands to mountaintops… The nine members of the subgenus Mus are found throughout Eurasia and North Africa in a variety of habitats: scantily vegetated deserts, steppes, rocky slopes, open grasslands and grassy patches in tropical deciduous forests, fallow fields and croplands at northern latitudes, and rice fields in the Asian tropics. Four of these species, including the house mouse, have dispersed beyond their natural ranges as a result of human settlement.

“Mice in their natural habitats are primarily nocturnal, although some will occasionally forage during the day. They are ground dwellers, although some species are also agile climbers and leapers as well as capable swimmers. A few are specialized burrowers rarely seen above ground. Most species, especially those living in savannas and grasslands, excavate burrows and chambers in which they build globular nests of dry vegetation. In an intact ecosystem, species of Mus, along with other small-bodied rodents, are preyed upon, sometimes to an appreciable degree, by reptiles, mammals, and birds (especially owls).*

Farley Mowat in his remarkable book, Never Cry Wolf, describes how wolves primarily hunted mice in the off season when caribou were unavailable in the Canadian north. A study of coyotes in Nebraska determined the 15% of their diet consisted of Deer mice.

Natural History of the House Mouse

“The house mouse is native to Eurasia but introduced worldwide through association with humans. Highly adaptive, the house mouse has both behavioral and physiological traits—such as the ability to survive in buildings and aboard ships, a tendency to move into agricultural fields and leave when the habitat changes, and a rapid rate of reproduction—that allow it to thrive wherever humans do.

“The house mouse has thin whiskers, narrow hind feet, and short, sharp claws; its long, slender, scantily haired tail and prominent, thinly furred ears appear naked, but on the rest of the body the fur is short and soft. Domesticated laboratory strains may be white (true albinos), black, patterned with black and white, or blond, whereas native populations have tawny-brown upperparts and white bellies with shorter, bicoloured tails. Introduced feral populations, on the other hand, have dark, grayish brown upperparts paling to gray on the sides; underparts are similar to the sides and sometimes tinged with buff, and the tail is uniformly dark gray. The animal has a distinctive strong, musky odour. It generally weighs 12 to 30 grams (0.4 to 1.1 ounces); its small, slender body is 6 to 11 cm (2.4 to 4.3 inches) long; and its tail length equals its body length. All these dimensions, however, can vary among different populations around the world.

“House mice are primarily nocturnal and terrestrial. Nervously active, they are agile climbers and jumpers and are also good swimmers. Outdoors, they excavate burrows in which to build nests of dry grass, but they will also den among rocks and crevices. House mice living outdoors eat insects and seeds, including grains, which makes them a pest in some areas. Indoor house mice are also considered a pest; essentially omnivorous, they construct nests in any protected place and can contaminate food and damage property. Indoor house mice breed throughout the year, but outdoor populations at temperate latitudes breed only from early spring until late fall. Gestation lasts 19 to 21 days, and these prolific rodents can produce up to 14 litters per year (5 to 10 is usual). Five or 6 young per litter is normal, although litters of up to 12 are sometimes produced. Life span can be as long as three years in laboratory mice but is considerably shorter among free-living mice.**

Estrus occurs every 4-5 days and the young reach maturity as early as 6-10 weeks of age. Breeding and survival of the young reduces dramatically when the population density is high or food, harborage and free water is low. They may even resort to cannibalism.

Mice are willing to try new foods. Although they eat relatively little each day (3 gm) they have a habit of nibbling on many foods and discarding partially eaten foods. So they destroy much more than they consume. They have a habit of gnawing on many things even inedible items. It may be a way of keeping their incisors at a proper length, since they grow continually. They are known to cause fires by nibbling on electrical wiring. They are so common that the US government allows a certain number of rodent hairs in food. According to the FDA it is “Actionable if the average rodent hairs in six or more subsamples is greater than or equal to 4.5 per 225 grams.” Yum! Mice can obtain all their water from their foods, requiring no free water. Mice have poor eyesight and are colorblind. They avoid open areas where they could see or be seen. But they have excellent hearing and senses of smell, taste and touch.

A mouse can squeeze through an opening as little as 6 mm (¼ in.) wide. It can jump as high as 30.5 cm (12 in.) and jump down from a height of 2.5 m (8 ft.). They can run along wires and climb up a vertical surface if it is somewhat roughened.

Mice can drop up to 25,000 fecal pellets per year which can transmit disease. Mice are a vector for fleas, mites, lice, salmonella, rickettsial pox, rat-bite fever, ray fungus (Actinomyces muris), tapeworms, Leptospirosis, Tularemia, ringworm, a form of meningitis and the Hantavirus. It is the Deer mouse that carries the deadly variety of Hantavirus. The mites can cause a form of dermatitis. The white footed mouse is a carrier of Lyme disease.

Mice are creatures of habit generally following the same pathways regularly. They don’t roam any farther than they have to obtain food. “During its daily activities, a mouse normally travels an area averaging 10 to 30 feet in diameter, seldom traveling further than this to obtain food or water. Mice constantly explore and learn about their environment, memorizing the locations of pathways, obstacles, food and water, shelter and other elements in their domain. They quickly detect new objects in their environment, but they do not fear novel objects as do rats.***

* Encyclopedia Brittanica, 2004
** Ibid.

Themes of the Proving

It’s fashionable to create themes for a proving which I find to be questionable. I only had two provers and it’s pretty hard to create a trend from two data points. I will mention one issue that I noticed that appeared during the process of the proving. Both provers lost their notes after the proving. Fortunately the second prover found her notes and I had my notes of the first prover. When I was in India the remedy got lost in the mail when I was trying to have it proven. On one day prover 1 felt like going home and hiding. I am going to go out on a limb and predict that loss and hiding will be a part of this remedy.

I also think the first prover’s dreams of being attacked by her trusted family and friends are significant.

Prover notes

Prover 1 – Female, Age 40, living in Florida. I was the supervisor and my comments are in brackets in a different font.

[She told me that her dreams are almost always about events of the previous day]

Day 3
More energy than normal over the last couple days. Only went to sleep at 2am last night because I knew I had to get up. Stayed awake for some time then fell asleep.

Day 4
Dream of being murdered: friends that I trusted and their whole plot was to murder me and I woke up out of the dream. I felt very betrayed and anxious and upset. I have never had dreams like this.

Pleasant state of mind, not anxious or worried. Slightly clearer [mind] than normal since taking the first dose.

More motivated to exercise, went running, swimming and exercised at home; usually not so motivated.

Waves of Anger unrelated to anything. Noticed it at 11p

Day 5
Dream: betrayal by somebody I loved & trusted and I was murdered by them.

9a – 2p Hopelessness, frustration, sadness, emptiness, feeling of wanting to cry, wanting to give up. It was a chore to get through everything so I could work doing massage. I could tell it was not me or coming from my clients. They were not situational as they would have been in the past normally. [It was] coming from nowhere that I was aware of. Better while busy working.

I had an enormous “Aha” experience. My mind is better able to see these overall patterns better. My mind is clearer than normal.

Skin is perhaps clearer than usual. Looks like I have makeup on. Confirmed by my daughter.

Slightly warmer all the time; not a fever.

Somewhat less thirsty than usual

Day 6
Morning: Very irritated today. Went to the market and everybody was rude, bumping me, talking on cell phones, NY accents talking loud, and it annoyed me more than normal. [Irritated at me asking her questions]. Didn’t want to answer questions. Eager to get home and hide and block everything out, get away from it. Felt irritated until she went to bed.

Day 7
Since waking sinuses are clearer than usual. Can breathe better for some reason.

Day 8
Dream: Visiting with friends, I had ugly purple marks on my neck, and I thought “whatever” and I went around shopping and my normal life, after a few days realized they were stains and that I could get rid of if I could find the right counteracting thing for the stain and they would come off instantly.

Dream: Walking and suddenly I had fluid release from my body and I had bright yellow splotches on my legs and clothes and all over the ground as if paint had been squirted. Dried instantly and remained brilliant yellow.

For both dreams the most important thing was the color because that is what stood out the most for me.

Day 9
Dream: Went to take a test and found that the test questions had all been changed. Felt frustrated.

No craving for salty food (new symptom).

11:30p Left ear cleared and I could hear very well, right ear was blocked and couldn’t hear well. Lasted about 3 minutes.

Very energetic, stayed awake til 3am. Should have been tired but wasn’t.

Day 10
Dream: Team of professional hit men were hired to go to DC to kill random people on an hourly schedule, for example at 8am they were going to kill someone. (may have seen something about the DC snipers in the paper) – very unusual subject for a dream for me.

Dream: Fonzie from TV killed a bunch of random people (didn’t care who he killed) and he was arrested and his lawyer was named Alphonse and he was interrogating Fonzie and I wanted Fonzie’s car since he wasn’t going to use it. But the lawyer wanted it too. It was a very cool looking hand made car.

Dream: Driving down I-95 and noticed odd car in front of me with a rope tied around it and I was in my car and I let go of a rope handle (like a ski rope) and when I let go I lost control of my car and realized that the other car was pulling me. And we both pulled over and the lady doctor driving the car, and we had a conversation about our feet. She had huge feet. She had to buy custom made shoes and we talked about where she bought shoes. My feet were normal. We moved into a shoe store by the end of the dream.

Dream: I was talking to someone about home robberies and the person looked at my family’s house walking thru it and was pointing out what a thief would find valuable and advising me to get rid of them, all of the antiques.

Dream: “million dollar massage” – Famous people paid a million dollars for a life-changing treatment from me. It became fashionable to seek me out and even Oprah had a treatment. All people were thrilled with their sessions and recommended them highly and some paid more than a million. (had this dream today & next day). What stood out the most was the treatment which was changing their DNA, changing their future and past and whole life. Everybody’s treatment was different. They thought it was very worthwhile. Never had a dream like this.

11:30p ringing in right ear for a short burst, few seconds, medium constant tone, no pain.

Day 11
On waking feeling very sluggish, tired & weak. Lasted all day. (rare symptom for her) > walking and fresh air. Napped off and on all day. Glad I didn’t have anything scheduled that day. Went to bed early, 10p, which is very early for me.

Day 12
Took a nap during day and had million dollar massage dream, with different people, sessions were great. People would ask what happened and I wouldn’t say. I cant tell because it is private. Oprah talked about it on her show but didn’t talk about the details said it was worth every penny. I am normally protective about peoples information. Every session was completely different.

Day 13
Dream about a car (unusual subject) Living in house that I lived in as a teen but I was an adult and I went to get in my car which was a custom made truck, door hardly opened, there was shelf, steering wheel in the middle, it was a very tall vehicle, very strange. Adult in this dream but treated as if still a teenager (felt strange). Parents were in the dream talking and living in the house, they looked the age they were then.

A lot of times my sinuses are very clear since taking this remedy. (curative)

Day 15
6:30p sweet taste in my mouth that lasted until noon the next day

Day 16
Very hungry today and yesterday.

Day 18
Hearing in right ear was improved and hearing in the left ear was dulled. This happened for a few seconds before returning to normal.

Prover 2, Female, Age 35, England. Her husband was the supervisor and his comments are in brackets in a different font. They stopped communicating with me at the end so some notes were not clarified.

Prover 2 had a habit of going out drinking in the evenings with her friends. I did not ask her to change this habit pattern for the duration of the proving. I tried to take account for it in recording symptoms.

Day 2
8:30am Took 3rd dose

Feeling really tired this morning.

9:30am A sore throat that has been lurking in me for a while has started feeling much worse. It is