The mouse and me

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I have a mouse loose in my garage. It’s not the first time I’ve had a mouse, but this is by far the most frustrating. Not only is the mouse very destructive, but it’s evaded all attempts to capture or kill it so far.

I first noticed a hole in the fabric of the back seat of my car about two weeks ago. I cart my kids around several times a week while they’re wearing sports equipment so I figured that they’d ripped the seat with some cleats or something. A few days later, there was some fiberglass insulation laying on the floor of the garage. I found that odd and was at a loss to explain where it came from.

Last Monday morning, I got into the car after leaving the windows down overnight and found a destroyed package of mints I’d left in the car. The package had been shredded and there were gnawed on mints all over the floor. In the passenger seat was an unopened bottle of Gatorade. The label had been torn to shreds. It was then I knew I had a mouse and the mouse had gotten into my car.

I searched the garage for droppings, trying to determine where the mouse was spending its time, but was unable to find anything. The best evidence I had of the mouse’s location was the fiberglass insulation I’d found near the wall. That’s where the traps went, baited with peanut butter.

Last summer I opened a drawer of my toolbox and was startled when a mouse came out of it. The mouse had found a package of vegetable seeds lying at the bottom of the drawer. I put out a peanut butter baited trap and went inside the house. As the door was closing, I heard the trap go off and turned around to see a dead mouse in the trap — less than a minute after I’d put the trap out. So I know peanut butter works.

It worked this time too. The mouse apparently loved the peanut butter. He triggered the traps, ate the peanut butter, and left me a little note asking if I’d leave extra chunky peanut butter next time. I reset the traps, added more peanut butter, and had the same result. This mouse was pissing me off. I added more traps, different brands, and strategically located them so that when the mouse tried to move away from one trap, he’d get caught by another. Each morning I’ve been greeted by a combination of empty traps, traps that hadn’t been triggered, and a couple that were upside down.

What really scared me was the trap that was smashed. The little metal trigger was a twisted, mangled heap.

Friday afternoon I found another hole in my car seat, but this time the windows had been left up. Off to the store to get more traps. I bought glue traps that the mouse is supposed to stick to. I bought a completely enclosed trap with the theory that the mouse won’t be able to remove the bait without getting himself caught inside the trap. I feel like I’m in a Nathan Lane movie. I’ve started drawing up plans for a Rube Goldberg device involving some string, a pellet gun, a pair of shoes, and a 2×4.

Nothing has worked.

Sunday morning I discovered that one of my traps was missing. I think the mouse took it home to put in his trophy case.

Today I discovered the mouse had eaten the foam padding off my bluetooth headset. For those keeping score at home, the mouse has claimed two car seats, a bluetooth headset, a package of mints, a bottle of Gatorade, a bottle of water, insulation from God-knows-what, two mouse traps, and most of my sanity.

I’ve put rat traps out as well, thinking that perhaps the reason the mouse keeps evading the traps is that they’re too small to catch it. I’ve had some friends suggest that what I have is actually a rat, but I’ve found some droppings, and they aren’t rat sized. Unless perhaps the rat is constipated from all the foam rubber he’s consumed.

ed blemel
May 4, 2006 2:30 PM

hi we here at prodigious services repaire cars in a rural community our customers have often wondered if we train these varmits to bring in work! we have tried many solutions and finally found one that works on cronic repeat ofenders. it is an aromatic deterent that smells good to humans but keeps mice away. visit our web shight at prodigiousauto.com to learn more.relax this stuff really works!

me in nj
July 13, 2006 7:33 PM

So... I am getting used to having mice/shrews in my garage about twice a year... we normally catch them with glue traps. Caught one this way last week, thought we were OK, but put out more traps just in case. We also have an ultrasonic one plugged in the garage for the last 3 months. These OBVIOUSLY don't work. Then I noticed that the traps we put out Just in Case (which are the jumbo ones - I could easily squeeze 6-8 of them in one trap if it didn't turn my stomach) were being moved away from the wall & noticed a small piece of pvc piping moved closer the small ledge by the wall (which surrounds part of the garage) where they are coming/going. I moved them back to the right position, thinking I was losing it because I haven't seen any droppings. I started to notice that there is insulation in the glue traps, but figure maybe it was just blown in from outside with the wind. That is, until I watch the shrew come right in, step into the trap, and pull himself up out of it into the hole in the wall. Needless to say, I was peeved... I immediately got new traps that had deeper glue. I placed one on the ground and one on the ledge (we have caught them there in the past). The next morning, I was hoping to have a dead mouse. What I found about 2 inches in from the edge of the trap was a mouse turd. How did it even do that?? As if it was saying S--t on me... No, I am not happy at this point. So, being a typical woman, I send my husband out for more traps. He, of course thinks I am nuts, but does it to keep me happy. We place 2 more glue traps out. Immediately after he finish placing them around, the mouse came in, walked around the mouse trap and sat up on its hind legs in front of my husband and squeeked. (I would have PAID to see that myself!). Needless to say, he will never doubt me again (at least when it comes to mice) and went out to get more. We NOW have the poison traps where the mouse goes in and dies. We have the poison-free traps that you bait the box and the mouse comes in but can't leave. And we have baited the 4 glue traps baited with peanut butter. I come home from work tonight and almost all the peanut butter is gone from the glue traps and nothing in the others. A quick google search led me here. What to do? Just a note - on a different site, I saw something about putting out a small bowl with original scented PineSol, undilluted. The smell is supposed to keep them away. I will be buying some tomorrow...

Beau M.
August 10, 2006 6:03 AM

Check out rodentdeterrentsystem.com. It's a high frequency system designed for autos to keep mice and rats out from under the vehicles hood.

Mcelhn
October 17, 2006 8:22 PM

We own our second Mercedes sport utility. We have had mice in each one. We have contacted the Mercedes dealership as well as a shop which services only Mercedes. They say they have never heard of mice being a problem. We live on an acreage and we have had all kinds of different vehicles in our yard. My husband has owned several - Landrover, 2 different Dodge Ram trucks, and a Chevy truck - we have never had mice in any of these vehicles. I am going crazy with this. Any suggestions? We've tried downy sheets which we heard they don't like. My question is where do they come in? Anybody know? This will be the last Mercedes I own!!

mee
November 20, 2006 8:24 PM

I have a mouse stuck to a glue trap, and am going to set him free. He is a really cute mouse, so so so small.

Captain mouser
December 1, 2006 12:29 AM

I think i've discovered a new breed of sticky trap resistant mouse. I discovered a mouse in my apartment which came in through a hole near a radiator pipe. When I saw it I immediately chased it back into the hole and layed out a parimeter, A PARIMETER of sticky traps so that it would be impossible for it to evade them! I figured these would be a deterrent for the little man, or woman, or whatever. So it disappeared for a couple of days. The next night I am lying in my bed just starring at the ceiling when I hear a rustling sound on the floor, rustling as in tiny claws running across the floor! I got up, turned the light on, looked around and wouldn't you know it, within moments the mouse came scurrying out of my kitchen, into my living room and OVER, as in like swiftly OVER the parimeter of sticky traps I had layed out around the radiator! And when I say parimeter I mean from wall to wall. I would like to have caught it so I could set it free, that is my intention and why I do not use the snap traps, but it totally resisted the glue! I tested one of these out on my own fingers and it even takes me a moment to pry them off after lightly touching the glue! I think this mouse is a genetic mutation.

Daniel
February 12, 2007 6:04 AM

get a cat

Dan
November 26, 2007 10:31 AM

My name is not important...my problem is! I recently moved into a house that apprarently has mice in the garage. I discovered mice in my wife's new Nissan and thus began the hunt. I have killed 3 so far but one still eludes me. I know there are many out there who like to "set them free" I feel these things are nothing but furry cockroaches hell bent on ruining my considerable investment and speading infectous desease. I have completely dismantled this car...headliner, seats, panels. I have saturated the car with ammonia, moth balls, peppermint oil, snap traps throughout, front to back and this little buck tooth bastard is STILL WONDERING AROUND MY CAR AT NIGHT! I have soaked cotton balls tied in panty hose in ammonia and stuffed them into openings in the frame throught the car...attempted to remove every bit of food possible! In the early infestation I found they had stuffed my headliner with dry dog food...I DON'T EVEN OWN A DOG!!! I'm at my witts end! I'm going to burn this place to the ground landlord or not! I just know even if I did his little ass would be out on the curb sitting on a leaf, with a pair of shades, squeeking, "Burn Baby BURN!"

Dan
November 26, 2007 10:33 AM

My name is not important...my problem is! I recently moved into a house that apparently has mice in the garage. I discovered mice in my wife's new Nissan and thus began the hunt. I have killed 3 so far but one still eludes me. I know there are many out there who like to "set them free" I feel these things are nothing but furry cockroaches’ hell bent on ruining my considerable investment and spreading infectious disease. I have completely dismantled this car...headliner, seats, panels. I have saturated the car with ammonia, moth balls, peppermint oil, snap traps throughout, front to back and this little buck tooth bastard is STILL WONDERING AROUND MY CAR AT NIGHT! I have soaked cotton balls tied in panty hose in ammonia and stuffed them into openings in the frame through out the car...attempted to remove every bit of food possible! In the early infestation I found they had stuffed my headliner with dry dog food...I DON'T EVEN OWN A DOG!!! I'm at my wits end! I'm going to burn this place to the ground landlord or not! I just know even if I did his little ass would be out on the curb sitting on a leaf, with a pair of shades, squeaking, "Burn Baby BURN!"

kevin
December 12, 2007 8:51 PM

I went out into the garage to wash my hands and looked down in the sink to see three little baby mice, they must have fallen from the shelf above as they were trying to get at the bag of pet food that i, as an idiot, left there......i took them all outside in a pail, behind the house, thinking i was a nice guy....... then, a day later i actually looked around the garage and found piles of crap, urine and stuff ripped to shreds. It was on... I have spent five hours cleaning the garage the last two nights....the first night as i was on my hands an knees in the corner, clearning up what appeared to be the 1000th crap, another one came flying out from under the workshop and made a run for the other corner - i had previously caulked the small holes in the garage, so he had no place to go....i tried to corner him, but he darted past me and i just couldnt find him again....my wife brought home a few glue traps, so i put them out and went to bed... next morning i got up to check the traps and nothing.... got home from work today, nothing....had dinner, went out to finish some of the cleaning and low and behold, a mouse was attached to the glue board......it was awful. The little guy was trying to get free, squeeling, and really was cute...i felt a bit awful, until i looked around and saw all the crap i still had to clean up.... i took the glue board, and put it on the ground and was going to give him the old shovel on the head routine.....and i smacked him a little bit, and he squeeled......i was mortified......i had to go inside to get my ipod, to turn the music on so i wouldnt hear anymore squeeling, put a cardboard scap on top of the trap and proceeded to drop a big bag of gravel i had on top of him to put him out of his misery.......needless to say, i have had the heebeejeebies for the past few hours..it was awful... four hours later i was still cleaning up the garage, with a few more hours still to go......and i had put together my theory....i got the momma, but i had let the little 3 babies free in my backyard...surely thats the nice guy route......and just as i was about to pat myself on the back, another mouse came ripping out from another part of the garage and ran past me, almost causing a mild heart attack...... I tried to find him but to no avail.......so another few hours tomorrow to clean up all the crap that is left....this sucks.....in the end, i will have spent 12 hours cleaning up the garage, moved everything in the entire damn garage, removed all the potential food items, any bulk paper, cotton, anything they can use for a nest, with the knowledge that one of them is out there......waiting... they are cute in a small, disney like way, but 1,243,435 craps later, i really want to get him...... awful, awful, awful..... So..there is one more that has to go....

Mark
April 9, 2008 8:04 PM

Had to leave my old 94 Ford F-150 parked in a field for a few months only to come back to it to find that the paper towel roll that was left in the back seat had been destroyed and strewn all over my vehicle. Of course droppings and what looks like urine all over the carpet too. After some cleaning of the vehicle I come to find they had made a nest in the glove box and inside the hood. Mice disgust me in a big way. Anyway, I'm giving the truck to my brother but am concerned of whether or not there is anything else these mice left behind that could harm him and his family. Guessing that they traveled through the heat vents, so Im concerned of blowing something nasty out. Any advice would be appreciated.

Bob
June 4, 2008 7:48 PM

We recently discovered mouses are sneaking into our house, and the source tells us they are coming in through the garage. I mean if it is a hole from the wall, we can easily patch it up so they can't come in. But nooooo they have to come through our garage. Like how can I patch up those gaps in my garage door? Not only having them coming in through the garage is bad, but we noticed they are getting through the drywall cracks and insulation to come inside our house. Can you imagine mouses moving around between your walls? Is the freakiest thing to even think about. Who know how many of them are there now? But we bought this trap boxes. And so far we caught one mouse with it. We sealed off of the pipe gaps with duck-tape so they can't crawl into cabinets under the kitchen sink. The only thing with the trap box is we have to release the mouse alive to somewhere away from the house. Does anyone know how far we should release the mouses so they can't find the way back home. Those little thing stinks horrendously!

Bob
August 21, 2008 10:03 PM

i have mice , plural , not as a pet , they are a hybrid and are evolving , co2 bb guns may be efective , but uncertan , im not sure what to do but will see wut happens . . . i herd they do not like the smell of mint . . . hmmmm

Wendy
September 29, 2008 1:52 PM

Okay not to be morbid here, but glue traps are really the worst thing you can buy to catch these guys. I left one under my kitchen sink and the little thing had chewed off part of his leg and left it on the glue trap. Ugh!! Needless to say, I consulted with my Science Director at the college of nursing where I work, and she told me the most humane way to "trap" a mouse is to use the old-fashioned snap traps. So, I bought an enclosed trap because I really hate looking at the little things. They are actually kind of cute! Just not in the dog food bag and running around the house. Oh and yes they do love peanut butter!

D.J. Remer
October 11, 2008 9:29 PM

Please help! My hubby just bought me a 1988 SL model Mercedes which will be stored in our barn for the winter. I know for a fact we have mice and I am pretty sure there is a rat or two out there ... Please help me protect the car of my dreams.Take off hard top? Put up soft top? Leave both off? Moth balls, Dryer sheets? Any suggestions will be appreciated@

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