Mice can sometimes seem like harmless nuisances, but having deer mice living in your home can lead to health problems for your family. This type of mouse is known to carry hantavirus, which can be very dangerous to your family, particularly children and the elderly. If you suspect you have deer mice in your home, there are a few things you can do to take care of the problem while protecting your family.
Inspect And Discard Cardboard Boxes
Deer mouse will typically look for places to keep warm in the winter, typically in places where they can avoid humans. These places can include your attic, crawl space, basement, or garage—all of the places you tend to store boxes of belongings. Mice can easily chew through the cardboard and make nests inside of those boxes. Inspect any boxes you have stored away for signs of an infestation, and if there are none, transfer the items to heavy-duty metal or plastic containers. If you do see signs of mice in the boxes, contact your pest removal service right away to help get rid of them and salvage your items.
Put Out Traps
You can put out mouse traps and bait as both a way of controlling the mouse population and preventing mice from becoming a problem. The traps should be placed in areas where you know the mice are living, as well as in areas they might seek food. For example, you may want to place them underneath cabinets or under your stove. Take extra care if you have young children or pets in your home, as you will want to make sure you don't use any traps or poisons that might harm them.
Check For Entry Points
Mice can squeeze through the tiniest of holes, so you'll want to take extra steps to make sure you don't have any breaches in your doors, walls, or foundation that the deer mice can use to enter your home. Work with a contractor to seal gaps around windows and doors, and consider having your crawl space encapsulated to keep these mice at bay. Deer mice tend to live in wooded areas, and they will nest in hollowed-out tree trunks or under piles of firewood, so it's a good idea to clear your property of these potential nesting grounds. The more that nest around your home, the more likely the possibility that they will try to enter your home.
Because of the health risks posed by deer mice, it's best not to handle them yourself. Contact a pest control expert to help remove them and to clean up the nesting areas once the mice are gone. If you have a particularly serious infestation, you may want to consider finding temporary alternative housing until the problem has been abated.