GreenleafOrganicPest.com Blog

Mouse Traps: Is Basic Prevention Enough to Safeguard Against an Infestation?

Posted by Mark A. Puglisi, ACE on Wed, Jan 04, 2017 @ 02:19 PM

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The fall season brings with it cooler temperatures and a chance to warm your home from the inside. Whether you choose to turn on your furnace or start an indoor fire, you plan to take advantage of your home's warm interior.

But you're not the only one who looks forward to the warmth your home's heating systems provide.

Mice, too, want to find a way to stay warm and cozy as it gets cooler outside. As the autumn season fades into winter, more and more mice may find their way into your home.

To prevent an infestation, you may take a few steps, such as:

  • Adding weather stripping to your entryways
  • Covering your vents with screens
  • Plugging up small holes, including dime-sized gaps
  • Sealing up entry points in your windows and doors with caulk

Additionally, you may think to buy mouse traps or mouse poison from your local grocery or hardware store and place these items around your property. However, not only are these prevention methods dangerous for you, your family members, your pets, and the environment, but they also might not be enough to safeguard against a mouse infestation.

Below, we'll discuss these kinds of basic prevention, tell you why you shouldn't consider them for your home, and give you an alternative to keeping your home secure from mice this season.

Traps

If you want to nip a mouse infestation in the bud, you may think that cheap mouse traps from the grocery store are a convenient option. You can likely conjure a mental image of these traps right away. They're made of a wood base with a metal spring system. Similarly, you may want to lay down glue boards. These traps are plastic trays that are coated with a thick, sticky glue.

However, these two kinds of traps can be incredibly ineffective at preventing an infestation. These traps only catch mice that have already entered your home, and once a mouse enters your home, you are already at risk for an infestation. After one mouse gets into your home, more will likely follow and perhaps even breed inside your house.

In addition to being ineffective at preventing an infestation, these traps require a fair degree of knowledge of rodent behavior to properly set traps. 

The glue traps, likewise, may not be strong enough to trap large mice for long. If the mouse is large and heavy enough, it may break free of the glue. However, fur and skin can be pulled off of the mouse, causing it serious injury.

Additionally, while glue trap manufacturers claim that these devices are non-toxic to humans and pets, the Humane Society has found that glue traps do present a few risks. For example, small pets can get stuck in the glue and lose hair, fur, or skin in an attempt to get free, causing serious pain for your beloved pet.

If a live mouse is still on the trap when you attempt to remove it, you could get bitten. The bite could become infected, or you could be exposed to other germs and bacteria that could make you sick. Likewise, any feces or urine stuck to the glue in the board may also expose you to other kinds of bacteria that present health risks to you and your family members.

Poisons

If you don't like the idea of traps, you may consider buying hardware-store mouse poisons to prevent mice from entering or breeding in your home. Ready-to-use poisons come in little plastic boxes or containers, and the poison is typically pellet shaped to resemble food. Other poisons come in open trays that you can lay around your property or inside your home.

While poisons are fast-acting, they still pose a huge threat to you, your family, your pets, and any other animals you have on your property. They also do little to protect you from an infestation.

Anticoagulants are the most commonly used poisons. The chemicals in these poisons prevent blood from clotting, causing the animal to bleed out over a period of days.

Vitamin-based poisons overload a rodent's system with vitamin D and increase calcium levels. These high levels of calcium and vitamins cause hypercalcemia, a condition that leads to blood vessel mineralization and kidney and heart failure.

Bromethalin, a neurotoxin, affects the liver and brain. It allows fluid to form around the brain and sodium to build up in the liver. It takes effect within a few hours of ingestion, and there is no antidote.

Unfortunately, the packaging does little to protect animals and small children from pellets that fall out of the casing. If a person or animal were to ingest any of these poisons, they would need medical attention immediately. Depending on the concentration of poison they ingested, they may face serious health risks, such as severe dehydration, internal bleeding, or even death.

A Better, Safer Solution

Instead of settling for dangerous and ineffective prevention methods to keep your home clear of mice this fall and winter, turn to the pest control experts at Greenleaf Organic Pest Management. We offer multiple prevention methods so you can choose one that fits your budget and needs.

We'll also help you adjust your property so you can keep mice as far away from your home as possible. With our services, you can stay cozy in your home all fall and winter without worrying about mice moving in for the season.