Not A Creature Was Stirring...Except The Mice! How To Keep Mice Out Of Your Holiday
Although mice make for fun characters in classic Christmas tales, they are not something you want in your home during this time of year. When you have lots of extended family members staying with you, the last thing you want is for a relative to start screaming about mice at all odd hours. If you have noticed mouse feces or boxes or bags that have chewed holes in them in the pantry, you have a mouse problem. Mice removal is common this time of year, so you are not alone. If you want to try to get rid of the mice on your own before calling a pest control expert, here are some things you can do.
Clear and Clean out Your Pantry and Cupboards
The mice are there because there is food and there is warmth, but mostly because there is food. Clear and clean out your cupboards and pantry of everything the mice have chewed on or chewed through. These are already contaminated with any diseases the mice carry. Throw all of that out. If you spot cans with droppings or streaks of dried urine, throw those out too.
Wiping these cans off and still trying to use them for food can make you and your family very sick. There is a cleaning chemical you can buy that will eradicate the trail of pheromones mice leave behind so that they can follow the trail back to the food. When you use this chemical to clean, the mice have to forge new trails to find food because the old scent trails are destroyed.
Invest in Plastic Food Storage
Place all food in plastic food storage or hard plastic totes. There are cereal containers to store cereal, rice, and grains. They come with lids that allow you to pour these foods into bowls. These containers will protect foods against mice and all types of grain and cupboard beetles, too.
Store all canned food and food in plastic cups (e.g., applesauce, mixed or diced fruit, etc.) in see-through plastic totes. Not only will you protect your food and prevent mice from urinating and defecating on it, but you will be able to see if the pests somehow managed to get inside the totes. (They should not be able to do so, but then mice can and do gnaw through almost anything.) If the food is not stored in a freezer or refrigerator, store it in a plastic container with a lid.
Place Bait or Traps in Places Where You Know the Mice Have Been
Mice are creatures of habit. Even if you destroy their pheromone trails, they will eventually find their way back to the food cabinets. When they do, make sure poisoned bait and/or traps are waiting for them.