Introduction: Conjoined Twin Mice

Picture of Conjoined Twin Mice

Mouse taxidermy 2.0: conjoined twins.
Warning: dead mice in decorative form. If you disapprove of this concept on principle, please peruse some of the other new Instructables instead.

Step 1: Learn Mouse Taxidermy

Picture of Learn Mouse Taxidermy

First, check out my Mouse Taxidermy Instructable. It covers all of the basic skills and tools you'll need to prepare your mice.

This Instructable will provide the extra steps necessary to create conjoined mice.

An aside:
If you're ethically opposed to the concept of creative and/or decorative taxidermy (and have chosen to look anyway) I have two questions for you: do you wear leather, and do you eat meat? If you answered yes to either, can you/would you kill and prepare the animals necessary to procure this meat and leather? Willfully ignoring the source of your food and clothing hypocritically outsources the ethical questions and is ultimately disrespectful to the animals involved. If you're an ethical vegan and eschew leather, I respect your opinion and your desire to avoid viewing discomfiting images. Thus I carefully label the Intro page of these Instructables, hide the more graphic pictures on the later pages, and promise not to send you any taxidermy for Christmas.
Now, back to our regularly scheduled Instructable.

Step 2: Devise and Create Voodoo Doll

Picture of Devise and Create Voodoo Doll

Figure out what type of conjoined twins you'd like to make. How many heads, arms, legs, tails, etc do you want? How many mice do you have, and how does their coloration best match up? How will your composite creature be positioned?

Next, plan how to create a voodoo doll to accommodate these requirements. The wiring can be a bit tricky, so experiment a bit until you're happy. Make sure you're sizing the voodoo doll's segments against the proper mouse, as head and body size may vary.

I've chosen to join my mice at the hip, as shown below. I used two whitish mice, but you can select different colors for maximum contrast. Next time I'll probably avoid white as it can allow the wiring to show through.

Step 3: Skin, Wire, and Stuff

Picture of Skin, Wire, and Stuff

Skin and wire your mice as described in the Mouse Taxidermy Instructable.

Consider how the pelts will be arranged on your voodoo doll, and how the armature will be wired- planning ahead is key.

Insert the head(s) first, then wire the arms, arranging as necessary. You'll find somewhere along the line that you have extra skin; don't trim it off until you've arranged the rest of the pelt, as it's easier to deal with an excess of skin than a shortage. Patching is a big pain, but doable. It can even be planned if you want the multi-colored patchwork Frankenmouse look, but I wouldn't recommend it for your first try.

Step 4: Stitch and Finish

Picture of Stitch and Finish

Bring the edges of adjacent pelts together and stitch using the same technique described in Mouse Taxidermy. You may choose to zigzag the pelt interface to avoid a more obvious line, but fur covers most things so it may not be worth it.

Now position the head(s) and limbs, and pin the faces and feet for drying. Fluff the ears and paws as necessary to keep them in proper position; moist fingers can help if they're getting crispy. I should have removed the mouth pins a bit sooner; better next time. I need to give their fur a brushing too.

Finally, give your critters appropriate costumes and arrange them for your festive Halloween decorative diorama. Remember the squabbling Two-Headed Monster Muppet? Good stuff.

Photo credit: ewilhelm
Teacher credit: Jeannie, who gives a great class in basic mouse taxidermy at Paxton Gate.


pauluschristopher (author)2017-08-28

pauluschristopher (author)2017-08-28

I think this is great! Isn't that why you guys are here? to learn how to do new stuff?

With this "politically correct" age, people are such faint hearted. It's a rat, get over it. If no one terminates them, they will breed like crazy. At least we're not wasting it.

Be logical and grow a pair!

Lei_Kei (author)2012-01-17

I don't see why people have such a problem with it. I think it's cute.

-The mice are already dead and bought at a store, it's not they they hit them with a hammer and used them just for this.
- The mouse doesn't care.
- Some humans even want to be made into art like this, and they can. I', sure you guys have heard of those body galleries.

People have different opinions on this, and thats fine. Let's just not be so didsrespeactfil. If you don't like it, you should quitely leave.

Yonatan24 (author)Lei_Kei2015-11-04

"- The mouse doesn't care."

It obviously doesn't care because it's dead, I wouldn't want someone torturing my dead body after I died, even I don't know because I'm dead.

I still don't know (and maybe don't want) to know why someone would want to do such a thing

StarFace (author)2008-11-19

I totally agree with Beanie... What kind of parent lets a child play with dead animals? Whether they are preserved or rotting is totally beside the point! Dont be suprised when you're not winning any parenting/responsibility/ethical awards! It's not that people are vegetarian/vegan/squeamish... I wear leather, I eat meat etc... But this is just sick! Really, it's disgusting, I think you have a problem... I mean once again, surely it's one thing to be showing people the proper methods of taxidermy... But to be attaching dead animals together or dressing them up is just completely warped and not to mention disrespectful. And it can't be having a healthy influence on that poor kid.

Lei_Kei (author)StarFace2012-01-17

You know, I've been poking the eyes out of fish with a knife since I was 3 and I grew up fine. I see nothing wrong with this. My dad, being a hunter and taxidermist, allowed me to always play with his dead animals and help him around. I say it's good parenting.

coolhan (author)StarFace2011-02-18

congratulations canida! you have won the responsibile ethical parenting award!

ekobor (author)StarFace2010-02-26

 But... you play with live animals, don't you? 

What is the point in teaching a child to fear death? They are going to die some day. 

I don't personally do taxidermy, simply because I fear doing a poor job, which is the line I consider to be disrespectful to an animal. 

But once a creature is dead, what is the point in letting the creature go to waste? 

You are teaching the child that death isn't something to fear, and that all creatures can continue to be useful even after death. How is that a bad thing?

izi (author)StarFace2008-11-30

you should research rogue taxidermy and Anthropomorphic taxidermy its been around since 1851 thanks to Hermann Ploucquet. Competitions are held each year for rogue taxidermy. besides its rather rude to say someone has a problem, when its you who just can't handle it. your pushing your own insecurites onto others

ajdommer (author)2011-02-06

I can't believe some of you all are so intolerant of taxidermy like this.

We're making the world our trashcans in so many ways. In contrast this is green, like when you kill an animal for one purpose and at least then you use all the parts of it, rather than wasting them. Like how theyr'e trying to recycle chicken feathers into something useful; so we don't just kill them for the meat and then have to find a way to get rid of 60 million cubic yards of waste per year.

masterme120 (author)2007-12-12

I can't believe that you killed mice for decoration!

I know!....I kill hamsters

ekobor (author)masterme1202010-02-26

 If I recall, Canida uses feeder mice or mice that she raised and lets die naturally. Not many people kill simply for the taxidermy. 

narmolania (author)2011-01-15

reminds me of bearix potters works XD (i meant eh girl who has those little critters in her hands XD )

Munchys (author)2010-10-30

This scares me... ima go back to the elctronics and try to forget this

ajkl27 (author)2010-06-29

Oh so cute and twisted =) I think I love you.

Rotten194 (author)2009-06-20

Let me go out and ask if you even read the instructable.
I have two questions for you: do you wear leather, and do you eat meat? If you answered yes to either, can you/would you kill and prepare the animals necessary to procure this meat and leather? Willfully ignoring the source of your food and clothing hypocritically outsources the ethical questions and is ultimately disrespectful to the animals involved.
Do you? Before insulting this instructable, maybe you should think about it. Here, let me do your thinking for you, if you cant.

These mice were already dead, in a pet shop. Yes? Yes.

Two things could happen. One, is the DEAD mouse is bought. The other is that it rots in a trash can. Which is more disrespectful to the mouse? Rotting? Yes, I agree.

So the more respectful path is that the mouse is bought. Now, two things can happen. One, the mouse is left to rot/thrown away. Or it is used. Which is more disrespectful? Rotting? Again, I agree.

Now, three things could happen. The mouse could be eaten by the person (D:), eaten by their pet, or used in some way. I'm pretty sure we both agree using the mouse is the most respectful.

So, you can use the mouse in two ways. Use it in taxidermy, or bury it.

I finalize my argument with why the mouse SHOULD NOT be buried.

1. Burial is a religious rite, mainly. I HIGHLY DOUBT that mouse was Christian/Jewish/Islamic/whatever, and thus would take offense. Feel free to prove me wrong on this case, but I doubt I will see any tangible evidence.

2. Mice carry parasites and diseases. Even if your pet can deal with these (e.g. millions of years of evolution has allowed it to grow protections against these diseases), then its fine for your pet. But birds and earthworms and other animals which use your "burial site" for food or shelter can contract these diseases/parasites and die.

3. Rotting. Don't pretend your burial will stop the mouse from rotting, unless you bury it Egyptian mummy style (which is basically taxidermy anyways). Unless you bury your little friend 6 feet under in a metal coffin, expect things you may not want showing up at the surface, like fungi, maggots, flies, and all the other lovely things that come with dead, rotting animals.

if you have any valid arguments against me, feel free to, but I wont listen unless you actually have a point beyond "ugh how crul and dasrespectfuo!!1"

ShoopDaWhoop (author)Rotten1942009-10-16

so i could do the same thing to my dead grandma?

Rotten194 (author)ShoopDaWhoop2010-03-10

Unless you bury your little friend 6 feet under
The typical human burial is more than enough to prevent most of the problems I mentioned. On the religious point, your grandma would probably have said how she wanted to be buried.

someniceguyon (author)Rotten1942010-03-02

You have some pretty good points and I agree with almost all of them. But in the end, it's human opinion on what is right or wrong. I'm not going to bring up leather cause most people in America wear it for fashion instead of warmth so that in mind, we are no different that this person with dis-respecting the dead. When I die, I want to be burned (less chemicals). But even if I was buried, Id prefer rotting over having my body messed with. I don't think that mice are smart enough to care, but it's still the idea. There are a lot of tiny facts that can make this right or wrong but like I said before, it's really up to you. I personally think though that it doesn't matter who does or doesn't have rights, we all should be given respect. If nobody sees the way I do, I couldn't care less cause I know this isn't the worst thing human kind has done. But if this long badly spelled rant has convinced you that this is messed up in some ways, then I will be happy.

(Hope this was a valid argument even though I'm not really trying to pick sides.)

Ohh ya, I forgot to add that I think these are lab mice sold as pets so the whole parasite carrying thing doesn't really apply too much. Not saying that they don't have them, just saying that I don't think that they would be legal to sell in pet stores if that were the case.

INSANE WAYNE (author)2006-11-20


This is understandable, but if you had stuffed your dog, would you sew him to another dog? It's not that they are keeping the bodies, it's that they are... screw it, nvm. If you can't see it already, there is no point.

Dark_Helmet (author)INSANE WAYNE2007-01-15

Just a small point - caps lock, contrary to popular belief, is not cruise control for awesome.

red-king (author)Dark_Helmet2009-02-20

i have a shirt that says that... rofl

lemonie (author)Dark_Helmet2007-02-15

Some people have defective keyboards y'now. The SHIFT key stcks, or that's what I think anyway...
Main reason for comment is this: there are enough images of Dark helmet to be found, why did you ude a Darth Vader image?

Dark_Helmet (author)lemonie2007-02-16

Quite right. Thank you for that link...I hadn't done much looking. As you'll notice, I have indeed changed my image.

lemonie (author)Dark_Helmet2007-02-18

Yes! "Oh Dark Helmet, your helmet's so big!"

canida (author)Dark_Helmet2007-01-15

;D I'm filing that line away for future use.

lgcalex (author)INSANE WAYNE2008-10-23

happy international capslock day

my daughter had a moth (Kathy), it lasted three days. It's now in a marchbox with a lollypop stick cross interned in the garden. Its as if she's still with use, the moth that is, not my daughter, she left home in '98.

unspecified (author)INSANE WAYNE2007-04-30

So when he dies, they are going to be interns together?

deadeye5720 (author)2008-10-19

what are you head of PETA? they were dead already, and even if they weren't, do you want them chewing holes in wires, pooing in your house, or eating your food and pooping where it used to be? by the way, rats carried fleas with the bubonic plague, they are filthy animals.

I think hes using pet lab mice, so this doesn't really apply.

kt2112 (author)2009-12-11

It is not cruel. because the mice are already dead. how ever some may find is gross lol

casemaster5 (author)2009-11-24


tenaciousbd (author)2009-10-15

I'm stumped.  Anyone have any animatronic ideas to go along withthis?  I've been on the look out for small motors and ways I canincorporate them into this project, but I am having seriousbuilders block thus far.  If my concept inspires you and you areable to fabricate something, drop me a line and let me know.  I'mthinkin biomechstyle, larger animal maybe???  Also PETA, pleasedon't respond to me, I still haven't been able to get out all thatdamn red paint you threw on my cinchilla fur coat.  Damn you.

MumblingTuna (author)2007-10-23

Umm personaly I think we're to uptight about death, human and animal, comon it's just a body. I want my body to do something funny or useful when I die.

mowie (author)MumblingTuna2009-09-28

i want mine to be turned into a coffee table......joking

I SEE YOUR POINT BUT HOW THE HELL IS THIS USEFUL. I dont understand why poeple do this at all why dont you make one out of cloth then its a talent.

wenpherd (author)2009-07-25

the disgusting and sick part may be true but this is not cruel.

XkidXhavocX (author)2009-03-08

oh but it was only 1 mouse

XkidXhavocX (author)2009-03-08

the one that i made had a blowfish beak, blowfish fins, and a birds tail... i spent 3 days with no sleep on that thing... i want to do autopsys (sp) for a career.

Ouchimoo (author)2009-02-24

BFF!! ROLF! You win random picture of the day.

casanova831 (author)2009-02-23

tell me bout it

FlamboyantHobo (author)2008-12-18

Ahaha, thats really clever. I like it.

ewilhelm (author)2006-10-11

Typically, I let this sort of comment slide, but not today and not here. It is not your place to ask another user to stop posting projects; that is reserved for me and rest of the team at Instructables. The comments are for constructive purposes and discussion. There is a world of difference between commenting about a potential safety hazard or poor documentation and mean-spirited posts such as yours. If you disapprove or dislike the project, please use the “Rate It” buttons to express yourself. If you are displeased with a perceived “trend” on Instructables, change that trend by posting projects that you are passionate about and contributing in a positive way. As always, if anyone wants to communicate with me directly, feel free to send me email or post on my orangeboard.

Tetranitrate (author)ewilhelm2006-10-11

Nice, E-will laying down the law. By the way XsimonXcoreX if your offended by projects that trivialize various forms of life, you might want to check out some of my instructables.

Vendigroth (author)Tetranitrate2007-02-17

I know this makes me sound callous (I am slightly callous, usually) but the point is: it's DEAD. If he'd just left it, it would have rotted away and he'd have had to use a different mouse to make this instructable. At least this way it could be useful and diverting. In fact, if you think about it, Canida has great respect for life. He's made sure that that mouse will be remembered for a very long time by a lot of people. It's almost commendable.

Tetranitrate (author)Vendigroth2007-02-20

I believe that almost all arguments could be easily resolved if people took a few minutes to put themselves in the other persons shoes. A strange analogy for this situation, but applicable none the less.

Imagine, if you will, that you are a mouse. Up to this point you have lived a fairly complacent life, growing fat on crumbs of cheese and water. You are only faintly aware of life outside of your cage. The omnipotent hand has, up until this point, not removed anyone you were too fond of. It has even been somewhat helpful by removing Barry, that arrogant fat mouse who likes to steal your cheese and hump your sister.
Then one day without warning, it is your turn. One morning you unexpectedly feel the warm hand close around your body, and notice your entire existence shrinking from view. Once you are past the threshold of your cage, the point from which no mouse has ever returned, you notice rows and rows of identical cages for as far as your little mouse eyes can see. Oh how you now wish you had the opportunity to tell that egotistical Mousius Ptolemaeus to suck it.
Once you are outside of your cage things begin to happen fast, so fast that you hardly notice that they have already killed you, shrunk wrapped your little body, and stored it in a freezer. Seeing as curiosity is a mouse's greatest virtue (as the ancient mouse scripture goes "Curiosity killed the cat"), you decide to hold off on mouse heaven for a while to discover what will become of your body. You hover around your shrink wrapped tomb until shipping time, when you follow it to the pet store, and eventually to squidlabs. You watch as they make quick work of your body, swiftly restoring it from its frozen in time state to a more lifelike stance. Whats this! They have joined your small mouse body that of another, and even better the partner body is that of your long time childhood sweetheart Minnie.
Your spirit ascends to mouse heaven, a little disappointed you didn't get cool glowing LED eyes, but satisfied, none the less, that your body has forever been immortalized, conjoined at the ass with your sweetie.

In conclusion I need therapy.

About This Instructable




Bio: I've been posting Instructables since the site's inception, and now build other things at Autodesk. Follow me for food and more!
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