Friday, May 15, 2009

Dear Mice. Thank you for your contribution to... to what again?

I take a pretty humane approach to the animals and critters around me. I don't eat meat, I don't go hunting, I brake for squirrels, I carry spiders outside and set them free in the bushes, and when I'd accidentally cut worms in half when I was digging in my garden, I'd say a little prayer for them and thank them for their contribution to the soil. (I'm not joking.) (And I don't care if you think I'm lame.)

The only time I get lethal is when it's a matter of self-defense, health or safety. For instance, I have a severe mosquito/ black fly allergy. I kill those bitches. Ants also like to bite me (WTF, ants!!!) and they can get into your food. They don't stand a chance 'round these parts.

For the first time in my life I am facing a mouse problem in my home. Our apartment is in a very old building- it's an 1800s farmhouse that's been converted into a handful of units. We're surrounded by trees and a really big yard, so I am not surprised we have mice now. It comes with the territory.

But. Not only are mice a nuisance- they nibble books and scurry around and chew through clothes and don't pay rent- but they chew through cereal boxes, bags of flour, burrow into your boxes and die smelly deaths. Not only are they gross and intrusive but they shit on your counter tops too as an extra act of defiance.

For two mornings in a row now I have found mouse droppings in my kitchen. Yesterday it was just two tiny poop beans and I was in denial, but this morning there were more and I can't pretend it's toaster crumbs anymore. This is a health and safety issue, and those little effers have got to go.

I asked around a bit for some advice about how to get rid of them. I decided not to use the traps that slap shut because, as Audrey pointed out, "The mouse traps spatter blood everywhere and make more of a mess. You don't want to clean up a crime scene do you?" That's worse than mouse crap.

Nicole suggested I get a cat, which is a nice idea because I like cats, but Gabe is allergic and we can't afford an animal right now. Plus, I grew up in another, older farmhouse with pet cats and I am not really up for having dead mice dropped politely at my feet while I'm watching TV. Thanks anyway, Nicole! :)

Jer suggested the glue traps, but I'm not fond of that idea because of the prolonged suffering the mouse would experience before dying- the struggle, the desperation, the exhaustion. Even Gabe was concerned about that- Gabe, my awesome husband, who sometimes bites into a burger and says, "Mmmm, cow," to his vegetarian wife. So that's a no-go.

I know there are box traps that won't kill or injure the mice and you can just set them free outside. While this is obviously the most humane solution, aren't those little buggers just going to come back inside and take repeated craps on my counter? Or does, like... the pet store take mice from random people who catch them at home?

I think we'll be going with poison. Audrey lives on a farm and uses a poison that dries the mouse out so they won't stink up a storm after they die. I remember her post about watching a pregnant mouse in her house die from the poison, and at that time I thought "THANK GOODNESS we don't have mice." But now we do. And unless Petco is taking donations, I feel like I have to kill them. For the health and safety of my home. I understand that poisoning them also inflicts suffering but it wouldn't last as long as a mouse superglued to a piece of cardboard.


I hope.

Now PETA is going to get a hold of my blog and SHUT THIS MOFO DOWN!



Jes said...

We had mice at our own place and chose the good old fashioned traps set with peanut butter. In once place we used the boxes that catches them alive and you can put them back outside. You're right though, they come RIGHT BACK no matter how far you bring them.

I'm interested in the poison you talked about, I've only seen the kind that kills them then you smell them for months.

Midcoaster said...

You should set up a non-lethal mouse trap like this:

Then when you have one, post it on freecycle or craigslist for those folks who need to feed their pet snakes. ;)

Bridget said...

I think they make live traps, where it is all inclosed so you don't even have to see the thing