9 Crazy Things Mice Have Done in Homes
Where did all of the dog's food go? And where is that grocery receipt? You'd be surprised at the hoarding powers of mice.
Stashed in Glass
“We’ve always had mice, but they had only been noticeable when their carcasses turned up. (Thanks to the cats.) But in the last year they became much more problematic, finding ways into drawers and the stove. Yuck,” begins blogger ‘Kitchen Chick.’
“One day I was cleaning out a large cupboard. I had a box with a lot of old, delicate glassware in it. I opened the box and discovered that the box was full of cat food. The d*mn mice were hoarding the cat food. They filled the box and all the glassware with cat food. I wish I had taken a picture, because at the time, while I was exploding in anger at this discovery, another part of me was laughing. I had to wash all that glassware. Some very beautiful delicate old juice glasses, trendy bar glasses from the 50s or 60s, and other weird stuff. And of course I broke a glass.” Here are some of the best tips for catching mice without a cat.
“I moved the cat food away from its kitchen nook that gave the mice such easy access to walls and cupboards for cover. Genius. Sheer genius,” says the Kitchen Chick. “Until Joe suggested that wouldn’t it be funny to sit down someday at the piano, tap a few keys, and hear ‘crunch crunch’. So I peered behind the piano, and sure enough there was a brand new cat food stash. I cleaned that out and moved the cat food yet farther away from anything. I have yet to find any more cat food stashes. (And, no, I’m not switching 17 year old cats used to having 24/7 access to food to set feeding times.)” Anywhere you see mouse droppings is a perfect place to set mouse traps. And the more traps you set, the more mice you’ll catch—period.
There were many responses to the Kitchen Chick’s story, like this one:
“I did a clear out of the cupboard under the stairs today where all our DIY tools have been stored & found our bags (4 of them!) walking boots & shoes (4 boots, 1 trainer & 1 leather shoe) ALL full to the brim with dog food, stripped paper & material of all sorts … including earrings of mine, beads, nails, screws, small radiator key (!), torn salary statements, a cuff link (minus its detail?), shredded postal delivery notes etc., bits of presumably chewed plastic, torn up silk neck scarf of mine (I was wondering where it was!!), … & in one boot even a pencil, sandal strap & a paint brush!!!!!!!!!! I have taken photos of some of them!!! I find it all hysterically funny but at the same time I am in shock!!!” Check out this DIY tool storage cabinet that mounts on the wall — mice probably won’t bother your tools in here!
What Happened to my Necklace?
Another person commented on Kitchen Chick’s story about their mouse hoarding tale. “After I moved out, my ex had a mouse population explosion…he used those blue poison pellets. Later, I came back to get some of my old boxes…I opened one and it looked like a huge turquoise necklace had fallen to pieces…I had a handful of the ‘beads’ in my hand when he walked in, and sent me to wash my hands pronto…the mice had been hoarding the poison pellets in the box! Before dropping dead I guess. How awful!!” This surprising home hack will actually keep mice away for good.
“Over the holidays my better half fell asleep and left his unfinished spiked eggnog by his bedside,” begins a comment on the Kitchen Chick’s mouse mayhem story. “To our surprise in the am he wakes only to find the critter inside his cup. He immediately thought about one of our daughters cartoons (I’m TOM and you are JERRY). He had gotten in and couldn’t get out. He immediately said you are out of here. This was the drawing point for me. Cartoon Memoirs or not I’m trying peppermint oil starting today.” Here’s why having a mouse problem in your house is worse than you thought.
“A few weeks ago, I decided to clean out some drawers. My son’s desk was the first target, because I had no idea what was in there. I opened the first drawer with a flourish and was surprised to find a pile of shredded newspaper. And, hey. There was the slipper I’d lost. And a mitten. And a Twizzler. And, peering out at me from a nesty place in the paper, two bright little eyes,” says Heather Heath Chapman for the Ann Arbor News.
“It turned out that my son had hidden some Halloween candy in his desk, and the mouse had been enjoying a resort-style life deep in the drawers. When we evicted him, we found a tiny toy bunny stashed among the sweets and shreds — a mouse’s little friend, perhaps.”
Despite people commenting on the use of cats to scare away mice, one person replied to the Ann Arbor News article saying, “Cats? My two boys think mousies are their friends. I was vacuuming and scared up a mouse who jumped *out of the cats’ toy basket* where it had been snuggling in amongst their playthings. A welcome house guest, no doubt. So when I see the two of them closing in on a spot in the kitchen I know they aren’t hunting. They are eagerly awaiting their next play date.” Watch this video to see Family Handyman editor Travis Larson’s best tips for keeping mice out of your home.
A Cup of Poisoned Tea Anyone?
“Our mice would store acorns under pillows and in shoes. One year Dad got tired of the mess and put out d-Con. When we returned there were few signs of mice and there was no d-Con left,” begins Margaret Berg, commenting on an article in the Chicago Tribune.
“We had a big old-fashioned tea kettle with a spout. I made instant coffee in the morning and tea for the thermos. Later in the day, I went to put on the kettle for more tea. Something rattled. Lime deposits? I swished out the kettle to find what looked like puffed wheat. The mice had stored the d-Con in the tea kettle. I had made coffee and tea, twice, from poisoned water.”
“We got in the car and went to the emergency room. They were experienced with kids sampling mouse poison. Blood tests showed we were all OK, but we should avoid dentists for a few days and go to the doctor if we started to bleed. The emergency room nurse asked, ‘Don’t you rinse out your tea kettle before filling?'”
“We went back to traps. This year they shredded six rolls of toilet paper and left acorns in the medicine chest.”
One of the Family Handyman editors made a shocking discovery when she went to replace her dishwasher. “We pulled out the old dishwasher and the top was covered with candy wrappers and other bits and pieces. We had mice in the kitchen the winter before and had successfully gotten rid of them, but not before they raided the candy dish and stole a considerable amount of Hershey Kisses!” If you’re more concerned about real thieves than furry four-legged ones, check out these 22 inexpensive ways to theft-proof your home.