Do you have unwanted scurrying feet running around the house, leaving messes, causing damage to your home, stealing food and opening the door to potential health hazards for your family? Rarely does a home suffer from a mouse infestation because where there is one there is usually a whole lot more that may go unseen. Here you can find several options that will show you how to get rid of mice in your house.
Finding and Identifying a Mouse Infestation in Your House
Do you hear scurrying, perhaps see some mysterious holes in food packages or elsewhere in your home and think you may have a mouse infestation? Here are some tricks and tips to help you identify if you have a problem with mice.
- Look for mouse droppings. These are often small oval, pellet shaped, brown droppings that can be found in corners, drawers, behind appliances, around food storage areas and just about anywhere these gross little critters may crawl.
- Found droppings or chewed open food packages? Leave a layer of baby powder around the area that shows possible mouse activity and when they emerge the tracks left in the baby powder can help you to find their enterance into your house.
- Small holes chewed in food packaging (they love pet food too!) or in the walls and floors is indicative that you have a mouse in your house.
How to Get Rid of Mice in Your House: Natural and Home Remedies
If you prefer to keep your home chemical free and want to avoid pesticides and other potentially harmful treatments to eliminate a mouse infestation -- you are not alone. Here are some natural remedies to eliminate and deter mice from your home.
There are many styles of mouse traps available ranging from snap traps, catch and release to electric traps. These are obviously pesticide free and easy to find in the pest control section of most stores but some professional pest control services will also lay traps (some types) as a part of their service as well. Some of the most popular traps available for use in your home are:
Electric or Electronic mouse traps seem to be becoming more and more popular with home owners and renters. These traps are typically the easiest to "stomach" for the person left to deal with it once it has done it's job as with the right trap there is no dirty mess to clean up.
The most popular styles will entail a small enclosed rectangular plastic box with a lid or door that will either run on batteries or require being plugged in to a wall outlet (I prefer the battery operated styles). When you peer inside you will see a small metal plate at one end and a spot for bait in front of it. Once the bait (peanut butter works great) is put in place and the trap is turned on and set it gets placed in a location known for mouse activity. As soon as a mouse steps onto the metal plate to take the bait and electrical current running through the metal plate will electrocute the mouse. Now all that is left to do is to turn off the electic mouse trap and dispose of the rodent.
Sticky Traps are an equally effective but less desired mouse trapping alternative. They are often small cardboard slats or boxes that use a quick and stong adhesive on the floor of the box to trap small household pests. These can work great to catch mice (even cockroaches) but are considered inhumane by many as anything that is trapped is trapped for good. Areas that are high in non pest critters such as lizards and such should take care when setting traps like these. Once adhered your only options are to put the critter out of its misery or leave it to starve as it will be unable to free itself from the glue base.
Snap traps the oldest known trapping method, still in use, can be an effective way to reduce and eliminate invasive mice. These traps are designed to be set and baited and once the bait is taken the trap snaps closed. When it snaps closed - depending on the mouses placement on the trap it will often break their neck or back. Though these trapping devices are often effective they can be extremely messy and if it doesn't work properly you may end up having to dispose of a seriously injured, but still alive mouse. These are also less desireable in homes where pets and children are as these can pose a serious threat of injury to anything that comes in contact with the trap.
Tips for Using Traps:
- Mice can be extremely clever. Consider baiting but not setting the trap the first time. Once they realize this is an easy food source they will be back for more - but next time they won't get away.
- Place traps in locations that are frequented by mice but that are not easily accessible to animals and small children i.e. behind the fridge.
Essential oils, peppermint specifically, is another aspect that can be tried when your goal is to find out how to get rid of mice in your house. Though this method won't kill and eliminate the mouse problem it does help deter these nasty little rodents and perhaps some dedication and they'll quit coming back. Here are 2 easy methods you can try.
1) Douse a cotton ball in full strength peppermint and place it in doorways or areas that mice frequent. The scent is repelling to most rodents.
2) Add 1 cup of water and 2 teaspoons of peppermint to a spray bottle and spritz areas where mice are known to gather.
Cotton balls need to be replaced frequently as the scent will evaporate quickly so check them every few days. As for the spritzing - use frequently to maintain a good amount of scent in infested areas.
How to Get Rid of Mice in Your House: Professional Solutions
Some professional pest control services will offer a number of solutions to get rid of mice that do not include the use of pesticides. Some will offer all natural sprays and others will offer to lay traps to catch the skittering little house invaders. Talk to your local exterminators to find out how they can help you eliminate mice once and for all.