Mice are extremely annoying pests because they are so destructive and they are difficult to get rid of. Plus, they multiply quickly, so you can be overrun with mice before you know it. It is especially difficult to get rid of mice when you have pets you feed indoors. Here are a few tips for controlling mice when you have pets.
Keep Food In Sealed Metal Or Plastic Containers
When you bring home a bag of cat food or dog food, transfer it right away to a sealed container. Metal is best. You can buy a metal trash can with a secure lid and keep your pet food inside of it. Plastic is second best, but it is possible for mice to chew right through the plastic if they smell the food inside. Keeping food in the original paper or cardboard containers is not recommended because mice have no difficulty chewing through them even if they are unopened. Once mice find a food source they like, such as a cupboard with pet food inside, they will keep coming back for more.
Don't Leave Dry Food Out Overnight
Your dog or cat may love to graze on dry food all day and night, but when you have a mouse problem, it is best to keep dry food sealed during the night when mice are most active. Place the bowl of food in a closed container so mice can't smell it. You may even want to sweep or mop where the bowl sits on the floor to get rid of crumbs that may attract the mice. Once you've made a habit of doing this, your pets will adapt. As soon as it's daylight, you can place the food dish back on the floor. Mice normally come out only at night. However, if you have a bad infestation, you may see mice during the daytime because they are more aggressive in their search for food. If you see a mouse going for the pet dish during the day, you probably have a lot of mice in the house, and you should call an exterminator right away.
Provide Wet Food On A Schedule
Wet cat or dog food is especially problematic when you're trying to control pests in the house. The food has a strong odor that attracts everything from mice to ants. The best way to handle the problem is to feed on a set schedule so your pet cleans the dish rather than letting it sit on the floor for hours to attract pests. As soon as your pet is finished eating, wash the plate to get rid of the enticing odor that attracts mice.
Be Careful With Snacks
If your dog or cat loves snacks, you probably give them in various rooms of the house. You may feed snacks while you watch TV in the family room or living room. You may even snack right along with your pets. The problem with snacking is that it leaves odors and crumbs behind that attract mice when the lights go off at night. You may need to run a vacuum or sweep the area regularly to get rid of traces of snacks. It doesn't take much food at all to attract a mouse. Mice are even attracted to just the scent left behind after the food is gone.
One good thing about being careful with your pet food so it doesn't encourage mice to hang around is that you also eliminate a food source for other pests too, such as ants and roaches. Although it's a little more work for you, it doesn't interfere with your pet's ability to eat on demand and get enough calories during the day. Keeping pet food sealed can help prevent a pest problem and help eliminate it once the mice move in.
However, that alone won't get rid of mice. You'll probably need to use traps of some sort, which can be a concern when you have pets in the house. The best option is to call a mouse control exterminator so you get rid of the mice quickly and safely. Mice are known to carry diseases and you don't want your pets to catch something from them or be bitten.