Chapter 4: How to Get Rid of Mice
Chapter 4: How to Get Rid of Mice
In this article, learn how to get rid of mice in walls, floors and anywhere else in your house, business or property. Discover what traps to use, how to use them, how to mouse-proof your property and tips and tricks for warding off mice infestations.
How to Kill Mice
There are various tools you can use to deter mice. Traps make for effective ways of killing mice by luring them to devices that eliminate or contain them. The key to using traps is strategic placement. Bait often works, but placing traps in places you know the mouse will go is most useful. Place traps near their nests, close to routes they commonly take and in their hiding places.
Knowing how mice behave is critical when using traps. Mice tend to stay within 10 to 20 feet of their nesting areas. They will travel between rooms and through gaps in the walls and floors within this range. Also, keep in mind that poison is less effective than traps. Mice tend to nibble on food, so they are unlikely to eat a lethal amount of poison at once. They may even learn to avoid bait and poisoned food. Plus, mice store food. This means taking away food sources, while helpful, is likely to do little in the long run.
Learn how to get rid of mice using proper traps and techniques.
Snap traps are the most well-known type of mouse trap. They are a contraption attached to a wooden base: A spring-propelled metal bar snaps down and kills the mouse quickly when it steps on the trigger.
Here are some tips for using these types of traps:
- Place traps in high-activity areas, such as along walls, in drawers and cupboards, near droppings, and close to any nesting or feeding sites.
- Space the traps 5 to 10 feet apart.
- Use boxes and other objects to create new pathways for mice and lead them into the traps.
- If you don’t catch any mice within three days, move the traps around.
- Keep the traps away from areas your children or pets might trigger them.
- Do not place traps directly above food or food preparation areas.
- Bait the traps with grains, fruit and high-fat foods — not cheese. You can also use strong-smelling foods like peanut butter or nesting materials such as grass and paper.
Glue traps have an adhesive layer that traps mice. The mouse is usually killed by suffocation or starvation. Many consider these traps an inhumane way of disposing of mice, as other traps are quick to avoid suffering. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not recommend glue traps. These traps scare mice and cause them to urinate, which increases the risk of spreading diseases.
Glue traps still have their advantages, like being cost-effective and easy to use and place. Here are some tips on how to use them if you consider them an option:
- Avoid placing greasy food, like bacon, as bait in the trap — they weaken the glue.
- Glue traps are best placed in bait stations. Extreme temperatures and damp and dusty environments keep the glue effective for longer.
- Keep glue traps clear of pets and children. Put them in places they are unlikely to go but where the mouse still will.
- Mice might slow down and get a chance to test your traps when placed in corners. Put them in places they won’t think twice about going.
- Glue traps should be placed against the wall lengthwise. Avoid placing them perpendicular to the wall.
Multi-catch traps come in a variety of styles and variants to trap mice in different ways. Some use adhesives, while others use glue. These traps are typically boxes made of plastic or metal, and they appeal to a mouse’s curious nature. Once a mouse is trapped, other mice come to investigate when they smell the mouse inside.
These traps are effective for businesses, as they keep trapped mice out of sight and out of the way. They can be used multiple times to catch many mice at a time. Mice explore dark areas, so they are naturally tempted to explore inside the trap.
Electric Box Trap
If you want to know how to get rid of mice quickly, you might consider electric box traps. They are costly but highly effective. These battery-powered traps use bait to lure mice in and then electrocute them, killing them quickly without suffering. They are a good way to protect pets and children from other traps and are a humane choice.
Poison bait and rodenticides are effective but pose a threat to pets and young children. Rodenticides are available as fumigants, baits and tracking powder. They are best deployed by professionals who use high-quality products and disperse them safely and effectively.
Clean and Seal First
Before setting up any traps, ensure your building is properly sealed and mouse-proof. If more mice can find their way into your home or business, then traps will be of little use in preventing your infestation from growing.
How to Get Rid of Mice Naturally
If you want to try to get rid of mice using home remedies, first, seal up your home and keep mice from entering. Be sure to keep the yard clean and clutter-free as well.
To get rid of a mouse without killing it, you can create a trap to catch the live animal and put it back outside, or you can purchase a live trap for capturing small creatures. To use a live trap, place it in the same areas as you would snap traps. To keep the trap humane, make sure it is protected from harsh weather elements and predators. Check the trap every morning to keep mice from dying of starvation or dehydration. If you want to kill a trapped mouse humanely, experts recommend applying a quick, heavy blow to the back of the mouse’s head.
Unfortunately, live trapping is not the best way to get rid of mice for several reasons. First, mice may reenter if you do not seal up your home. They have a great sense of direction and can find their way back to your home even if you release them some distance away.
Also, the CDC does not recommend using live traps. Like glue traps, live traps can cause mice to urinate out of fear, thus increasing your risk of exposure to germs.
Lastly, live traps usually are not the most effective option for large infestations.
Once you’ve removed mice from your home and closed openings, you can deter them from reentering by applying spearmint, peppermint or eucalyptus oil to runways and entryways.
How to Get Rid of a Dead Mouse
If traps are successful and you find a dead mouse in your home, the CDC recommends taking these steps to dispose of the rodent:
- Wear rubber, vinyl or latex gloves.
- Spray the dead mouse with a disinfectant and let it soak for five minutes.
- Place the dead mouse in a plastic bag and tightly seal it.
- Throw the bag into a covered trash can.
- Remove the gloves and thoroughly wash your hands
How to Keep Mice Away
Follow these steps to effectively keep mice away:
- Entry points: Caulk holes, seal cracks, block gaps and remove any possible entry points.
- Guards: Install squirrel guards around bird feeders to stop them from luring mice.
- Trimming: Trim bushes, pull weeds and keep your grass short.
- Blockages: Close up and block holes and burrows.
- Trash: Cover trash cans and bins. Clean up all trash piles and ensure bins use tight-fitting trash lids.
- Food: Put loose food in containers, clean dirty plates and clear away food scraps and crumbs.
- Pet food: Hide uneaten pet food overnight.
- Fix leaks: Fix all leaky pipes and leave no stagnant water sources available.
What Scent Will Keep Mice Away?
Mice generally do not like the scent of peppermint, eucalyptus or spearmint. However, even though they may not like the smell of these oils, it doesn’t mean they won’t find a way into your home. The best way to keep mice away is to seal holes and keep the inside and outside of your home clean and clutter-free.
Does Vinegar Get Rid of Mice?
Although vinegar has a strong scent, it won’t likely keep mice away and won’t eliminate them.
Do Mothballs Keep Mice Away?
Mothballs may temporarily deter mice, but eventually, they’ll find new paths to avoid the mothballs.
Do Dryer Sheets Repel Mice?
As with mothballs, mice might avoid dryer sheets at first, but eventually, their search for food and shelter will be more important than avoiding strange smells.
What Is the Best Mouse Deterrent?
Unfortunately, there is no magic mouse deterrent to keep mice away. On the bright side, you can prevent an infestation by removing entry points, food sources and shelters.
Can You Fully Get Rid of Mice?
The only way to fully get rid of mice is to stop them from getting in or coming back. Call an experienced professional to control current infestations, follow the advice given in this article and find a pest service you can trust. Pestech Pest Solutions offers many ways to effectively prevent and control mice infestations.