Popular culture has formed the image that mice are sneaky, clever rodents that love to eat cheese and trick house cats. Cartoons have also given the impression that mice lounge in tiny mouse-sized arm chairs and watch t.v., but how much of these mouse myths are true?
1.Cheese is a Mouse’s Favorite Food: Fiction
Will a mouse eat cheese? Sure. Mice are foragers, so they’ll pretty much take whatever they can get their tiny feet on. In fact, if food is really hard to find, they’ll even eat other mice. Eek!
However, if you could understand their squeaking, they’d tell you that, like humans, they enjoy a variety of foods including carbohydrates, fats and proteins. So while they may eat cheese, it’s by no means their favorite food. And if you keep food out in the kitchen or don’t clean up spills and crumbs, you increase your chances of attracting mice with an all-you-can-eat buffet of sorts.
2. Mice have Hollow Bones: Fiction
Mice are known for being able to squeeze through some pretty tight spaces. Somewhere along the line, this started the myth that they have hollow bones. They don’t. Like us, mice are vertebrate mammals with musculoskeletal systems. Unlike humans, however, mice do not have collarbones. Because of this, they are easily able to make their way through small cracks and crannies that you may have throughout your home.
3. Mice are Nocturnal: Fact
Mice are nocturnal animals, which means they prefer to search for food at night. If you’re hearing weird squeaks, rustling or gnawing once the sun has set, this could be an indication that you have a mouse problem.
However, that doesn’t mean mice never come out during the day. They just prefer to forage at night. If you do see a mouse in the daytime, it could be an indication of a major infestation. That means you might want to start thinking of ways to control mice.
4. Mice Live in Dirty Homes: Fact and Fiction
Mice are more interested in having a reliable food source than they are cleanliness. And an unkempt home may offer them easier access to food — think crumbs and food spills — or nesting materials.
That being said, they won’t turn their little noses up at a clean house either. So while being an avid housekeeper may create a less desirable habitat for mice, it doesn’t mean they won’t ever move in.
5. A Cat is all you need to Prevent Mice: Fiction
Cats are natural hunters, so there’s no doubt that most house cats will absolutely catch mice if they find them. However, adopting a cat to control mice is not a good idea for several reasons.
For starters, many people think that mice will be deterred by the sheer fact that a cat is present. If this were the case, you’d never hear of cats catching mice. Additionally, mice can transmit diseases, parasites or the toxins from poisoned bait traps to Mittens and make him very ill. Finally, if you see one mouse in your home, there’s a solid chance that there are many more hiding nearby. Your cat isn’t going to be able to control this number of mice, regardless of how good a hunter it is.
When it comes to mice, there’s one universal truth: Unless they’re pets you keep in a cage, you don’t want them in the house. If you think you have a problem with critters in your home, our trained technicians can help you create a plan customized to control mice and other rodents.