Mouse, Mouse in the House!

by sakuraso

Last week, to my flat’s (almost – 2/3rds) collective horror, we discovered that we had a mouse running around our flat. I’m not even scared of mice, but there’s something infinitely creepy and disturbing about something unwanted scurrying around your room. I imagine I wouldn’t be at all bothered if it stayed in other parts of the flat. Unfortunately, I was the one to discover our latest addition that doesn’t pay rent (henceforth known as Minnie.) – or fortunately, had it not been for my desire to stay awake (stemming from a month of non-stop dreams about death, I applaud my mind for all the creative ways its come up with…), we may not have realised until it was too late (i.e. she had babies.)

Illustration by my flatmate, Hattie, via the medium of bathroom tile drawing. Because as any well functioning flat, we communicate by drawing on the tiles whenever in the shower.

…Not at the same time. Just saying.

 

How to tell if you have a mouse in the house.
As proven by us in discovering the presence of a little lady with a very large backside.

  1. Mouse droppings!
    Though if you find a whole load of mouse droppings, you’re kinda screwed. Cause that means there’s loads of them. So I would recommend trying one of our other trusty methods.
  2. Missing food.
    My flatmate found a chunk of her chocolate missing. This can either be an indication you have a greedy rodent not content with simply nibbling things but stealing the whole damn thing. Or that you have a bad memory. This method should be combined with the following:
  3. Plastic bags. Yup. Plastic bags. The reason I discovered Minnie was because no matter what degree of ninja your mouse is, it will not be able to walk over a plastic bag silently. I managed to map out her route through my room thanks to my being so lazy I couldn’t pick up a few bags from the floor. We then used the same method for checking Hattie’s room for mice. Which worked. Turns out Minnie prefers Hattie’s room. Possibly because I’m never asleep at night.
  4. Not sleeping also helps. So if a mouse runs into your wardrobe and then sticks its head out, you can see her doing it.

On positive identification of a mouse in your house, things you may want to try:

  1. Turn the heating down. They’ll be hiding in your house because it’s cold outside. So you can try convincing them it’s actually nicer outside. You can always put a jumper on. They can’t.
  2. Clean, clean. clean. Vacuum clean everything. Make sure they can’t find any scraps.
  3. Put all food away. Things in cardboard containers should be hidden away in plastic boxes and other things that mice can’t get to.
  4. Rodent repellers. We can’t quite work out if they work. We plugged one in, and I’ve not seen any mice in my room, but that could simply be because I’ve been awake at night and making lots of noise. The mouse has however been rather dopey and slow. Maybe because of the repeller, or maybe because she’s been slowly starving.
  5. Mouse traps. We’ve been opting for the more humane ones, but as we’ve been becoming a bit more desperate in our fight against time and possible mouse pregnancy, we’ve been going for others. So far we’ve tried little trap ones that tilt and close, black boxes that were in the flat already, how they work, I have no clue. Classic mouse traps that we actually had to look up how to set up, but now I’m a pro. Aaaaand mouse bait. Though it’s really not great, as if they eat the bait, they then die in their sleep much later… which means if their little lair is in a wall or in the floor, you’ll be having a stinky decomposing mouse corpse in no time.

The one thing we refuse to use is the sticky tape… as getting them off the sticky paper… tends to break their legs. Not gonna happen.

There’s one thing I have to say about the presence of Minnie. Our flat has never been tidier.

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