Mice are small rodents that are often found in homes. If your apartment, kitchen or home has an infestation, it may not be as unpleasant as roaches or rats, but it is still too much for some. For mice have a wide range of parasites from mites to toxoplasmosis and can cause diseases like rat-bite fever to leptospirosis. To make matters worse, they reproduce fast. However, if you want to know how to get rid of mice naturally, then we have you covered. Our home remedies for mice are all you need to know to repel mice from your home and keep them away.
How to get rid of mice
Most the mice that people see in the home are just visiting, on a food foraging visit.
If you want to get rid of mice from your home, then you need to stop the critters from entering your property in the first place. Mice can squeeze through deceptively small holes so they need to be blocked and filled.
Each house is different but do a thorough check around the house looking for potential entry points.
- Caulking is the quickest and easiest way to block the holes,
- Use wire wool where possible as mice cannot chew through this
- Use expandable foam and cement for larger holes
- Cover vents and fix baseboards.
- Repoint brickwork
2. Mouse Traps
Snap traps – snap mouse traps are one of the best known, most reliable devices for controlling mice. These traps use a bar, held under high tension to swiftly connect with the mouse’s neck for a quick death.
Glue traps – These traps are pieces of card or board covered with a layer of glue. If a mouse walks on the trap it gets stuck and slowly dies. They are cheap and very effective traps, but also the most inhumane.
Electric traps – These are expensive traps that electrocute the mouse for a humane death. There are various designs but most run on batteries and allow for easy disposal for those that are squeamish.
Live trap – These are the most humane as the mouse is caught alive. Again, there are several designs on the market but whichever design you choose, be aware they are not as effective at catching mice as the other traps.
Traps need to be placed near known mouse runs and exit/entrance holes. Bait the traps with peanut butter or cheese.
To use cloves to get rid of mice and stop them entering the house, you can crush some whole cloves and place near known mouse runs. Or you can use clove oil in the same way as peppermint oil and wet cotton balls to be placed in the same areas.
4. Aluminum Foil
Mice communicate and hear in ultrasonic frequencies and rustling tinfoil is the mouse equivalent to fingernails scratching on a blackboard. (1) Mice will not walk on tinfoil due to the noise.
Aluminum foil won’t get rid of an existing mouse infestation as the mice will simply avoid the foil, but it can be placed near mouse entrances that perhaps cannot be sealed, preventing mice from entering your home.
Cover everything with foil paper where rodents come frequently. You can also close small openings and cracks with old foil paper. Mice will not chew through it.
5. Kitty Litter
If you want to know how to get rid of mice with kitty litter, it’s quite simple.
Put kitty litter near suspected mouse entrance holes. You can find it online or any pet shop.
One of the more bizarre side effects of toxoplasmosis is that it makes rodents fearless of cats and they may actually be attracted to cat litter. (2)
If you see no results from cat litter, do not persist.
Mothballs contain a noxious chemical called Naphthalene. When it is inhaled or ingested it can prevent blood cells from carrying oxygen.
It is this toxicity which can keep mice away. However, to make the home truly uninhabitable, the amount of naphthalene needed would be toxic for humans as well, not to mention the awful smell.
Naphthalene should never be used to get rid of mice who are already present. However, it can be used to block entrances and deter mice from entering the home.
Caution: Since they are toxic, keep them away from the reach of kids and pets.
7. Rotten Onions
The onion evolved this strategy to avoid being eaten in the wild. Sulfenic acid is like mustard gas to rodents.
Indeed, onions are toxic to many animals. Onions are a great mouse repellent.
Just place a few in the infested areas. Replace them when the smell fades away.
8. Instant Potatoes
The reason is that instant potatoes, although perfectly edible when hydrated, are very dangerous to mice when dehydrated.
The starchy flakes absorb water in the gut and expand. The rapid expansion of food in the gut is what kills the mice. Using instant potatoes is one of the most natural ways to get rid of mice.
Place them in the corners and places where mice visit frequently.
9. Bay Leaves
Put some bay leaves where they come regularly. Replace the leaves in 2 or 3 days.
Unfortunately, ammonia smells pretty toxic to humans, so only use in places you don’t visit often. i.e. attics, sheds and basements.
11. Peppermint Oil
Rodents have a heightened sense of smell and mint smells especially noxious to mice. If the scent is strong enough, it will deter them from making your home theirs.
How to use peppermint oil to get rid of mice?
Put 20-30 drops of this oil on cotton balls and leave them in corners, near the sinkhole and wherever needed. Replace those balls with new ones when the smell of peppermint fades away.
- You can also use mint leaves or mint toothpaste if you don’t have the oil.
Caution: Place this oil away from the reach of your pet.
12. Baking Soda
Mix baking soda, sugar and flour in equal measure. Do not add water. Leave a bowl of this mixture on mouse runs.
The flour and sugar will attract the mice, the baking soda will kill them.
If you are wondering what baking soda does to mice, it soda reacts violently with the mouse’s stomach acid creating excessive gas. This gas cannot be expelled and it rips the gut.
It is also safe to use if you have pets as baking soda does not cause any harm. This is one of the best home remedies to repel mice.
13. Tabasco Sauce and Soap Detergent
Mix 2 to 3 tablespoons Tabasco sauce and 1 cup detergent in 4 liters of water. Fill the mixture in a bottle and spray where necessary.
Caution: Don’t spread it on a smooth floor, as the detergent in the mix will make it more slippery which may harm you.
14. Dryer Sheets
Place them in your cupboards, pantry, kitchen, etc. Replace, when the scent fades out.
15. Homemade Mouse repellent
Put all the things together in a pan and boil them well. Allow it to cool. Strain and fill it in a spray bottle. Spray wherever required.
- Wear gloves and mask while making this spray. It may cause irritation.
- Don’t spray it on carpets, it may discolor it.
Owning a cat is an obvious mice deterrent remedy – if you own a cat, you are far less likely to have mice. Cats obviously hunt mice but more to the point, mice tend not to take up residence in places where they can smell a cat.
Other predators can also keep mice away. A pair of nesting owls can eat up to 500 mice a year.
If you find keeping an owl in your kitchen a bit much, try placing owl feathers in and around mouse prone areas. The smell of an owl is often all you need.
17. Snake Poo
Snakes are another feared mouse predator. Again, wild snakes roaming your kitchen is probably a cure worse than the disease. Why not try snake poo placed around mouse-infested areas?
You can get this from a pet store or zoo. Remember to keep it away from the reach of children.
18. Ultrasonic Beep
You can buy these ultrasonic electronic instruments from any electrical shop and put it in your house.
The pitch these machines emit is inaudible to the human ear but is distressing to the mouse. This method does not guarantee to repel rodents. Be aware that a well-established nest, especially with older mice, may well ignore these devices.
19. Homemade mouse poison
Why not try a homemade mouse poison? The recipe is simple. Add chocolate milkshake powder in equal quantities to plaster of Paris. Mix well and leave by the mouse runs. The mice will eat the mix and the plaster Paris will clog their gut and eventually kill them. Cocoa is also toxic to mice.
- Keep your food and eatables packed and in an airtight container.
- Clean the leftovers.
- Keep a lid on the garbage can.
- Don’t use chemical laden pesticide.