For some people, the appearance of a mouse in the house barely elicits a response. Sure, they may set a trap with a bit of peanut butter on it and rush to be rid of the little creature as soon as the tell-tale snap occurs, but in their mind, that is the end of it. Oh, if only it were that simple. The unfortunate truth is that while you have dealt with that one mouse very effectively, there are dozens more hidden behind the walls and in basements or attics that you do not even realize are there. After all, mice are extremely social creatures that will live in large colonies making the likelihood that one, lone mouse ventured into your home highly unlikely. You may be tempted to think that as long as they are out of sight and leaving your pantry alone, more power to them; but this would be a risky mindset to have. Mice are dangerous. Very dangerous! You may be thinking, “How could a tiny little furry creature possible pose a danger to me?” This is a valid question worthy of discussion. So, let’s take a closer look.
The first and most obvious elephant in the room is the fact that mice damage personal belongings. They will chew through boxes and climb into totes searching for your favorite cashmere sweater to tear into little shreds. They do not do this to be mean, necessarily. They simply want a nice cushy nest to welcome their little mouse children into the world with – and they won’t stop there. They will shred newspaper, books, magazines, paper towels, clothing, and other materials to use in nest making. If you are still thinking that you only have one, tiny, little mouse in your home, this may not seem like a very big threat; but when you realize that there are dozens of little mouse mommies-to-be searching through your storage bins, closets, and dresser drawers striving to make the biggest, softest nests possible, well, that is another story altogether. The damages can be costly. Priceless, in fact, when the items they choose hold a sentimental value to you and your family.
While we are on the subject of costly damages, it is important to note that it doesn’t stop with nest making materials. You see, mice have 2 front teeth that never stop growing, and in order to maintain their teeth and keep them at a functional level for survival, they gnaw. Constantly. They will chew on sheetrock, insulation, pipes, support beams; you name it, they will use it as a teething ring. This constant chewing can lead to weakening structures and costly repair bills.
However, the biggest threat from the mouse’s habit of gnawing on everything in sight comes when they decide that wires make great chew toys. Mice do not know the difference between an old, unused wire in your wall and a new wire that has electricity constantly flowing through. When mice chew on live wires within your wall, they can short the wire out causing it to spark and potentially start a fire. You would be surprised to learn the high numbers of house fires that have been started by a tiny, little mouse.
OK, OK, so mice cause extensive damage, but their threat doesn’t stop there. Mice urine, droppings, and dander are also responsible for triggering severe allergies in many people. Once their urine and droppings dry, they will begin to break down and mix with dust in cracks and crevices and along molding in your home. The slightest wisp of air such as the stirring that is caused when you walk through a room is enough to send this powdery dust into the air where it can be breathed into your lungs causing itchy, watery eyes; runny noses; scratchy throats; and more. In many people, the sensitivity to these allergens is so severe that they can actually cause a full-blown asthma attack.
The greatest danger of having mice in your home, however, comes with the diseases mice and the parasites like fleas, ticks, and mites that accompany them can carry and transmit. According to the CDC, there are at least 11 diseases that are directly transmitted by rodents, including salmonella, plague, and hantavirus which causes hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) which is fatal in over half of confirmed cases! The CDC also states that there are at least 15 diseases that are indirectly transmitted by them including Lyme disease, several forms of typhus, and West Nile virus.
So you see, it is never a good idea to overlook that mouse in your house; and the best course of action is to keep those little creatures out in the wild where they belong which can be easier said than done since mice can squeeze through a hole the size of a dime to gain access to your home. If you live in Tennessee, however, you can turn to the industry leading experts here at All-American Pest Control. Our rodent experts not only know how to eliminate rodents in your home, but they can also safely clean up their disease-causing messes and seal all the access points that mice are using to enter your home. To see which of our effective pest control solutions are right for you, simply give us a call today.