Getting rid of mice is a top priority for most homeowners. We are often asked by potential clients about alternative mouse control techniques, strategies, and products. Alternative mouse products can include sprays, oils, and electronic products. In this article, we will discuss some of these alternative mouse control strategies, and how effective they are for preventing or eliminating mouse problems.

 Ultrasonic Rodent Repellents

Ultrasonic rodent repellents are one of the most common products we are asked about and see in homes or businesses struggling with mice problems. Ultrasonic devices are often sold in hardware stores, big box retailers, online retailers, and many other stores. The concept is that they emit an ultrasonic sound that humans cannot hear, but is annoying and distressing to mice. They are supposedly safe for humans and pets. The reality is that these devices are not effective. We see them in many homes with major rodent issues. They are even sold in major home improvement chains where we have been brought in to solve their mouse infestations. Our recommendation is to save your money and not purchase ultrasonic rodent repellants.

We grade these products: F

Peppermint Oil

Peppermint and other essential oils are thought to be helpful in repelling pests including mice and rats. These oils are inexpensive, non-toxic, and easily purchased at many local stores. You can even grow your own peppermint. Mice have poor eyesight and very sensitive noses, so the theory is that these products will help deter mice since they hate the smell.

The reality is a lot more complicated. A LOT of these oils is needed to make a difference. The smell may irritate you as much as the mice if you use enough. The smell of these products may also be very irritating to people with sensory issues. And, because mice will do whatever they need to reach a food or shelter source, they will ignore or overcome their discomfort.  These products also break down and will need to be reapplied often.

Growing peppermint in a garden can be helpful to deter rodents from eating your vegetables or flowers. Peppermint oil can help – not likely solve – minor rodent issues. But it won’t do much for major infestations.

Our grade: B

Animal Feces and Oils

Let’s just start with the obvious. Keeping animal feces around your home is unsanitary!

Just as mice will avoid areas with some oils, they will avoid areas with certain dried animal feces and oils. Here we are talking about the droppings of predators, primarily cats and snakes. Mice will often avoid areas with cat poop, snake feces and snake skins. A major downside of this approach to preventing mouse problems is that you have to handle feces, and as previously mentioned keeping cat or snake feces around is unsanitary. It’s also not a very practical solution. Having feces around also will not stop a rodent infestation that has already begun.

Our grade: F

Get A Cat

This is the most common refrain we hear in the field. While some cats are great hunters, many cats are, well, useless beyond their companionship. Get a cat because you want one and not solely for mice. Cats can sometimes alert you to a mouse issue and may catch some, but they may not be enough for a major infestation.

Our grade: C (for Cat)

The most effective strategy and method for eliminating mice issues is hiring a professional pest control company such as My Pest Pros. Our technicians have years of training and science behind their approaches to rodent control.

Call My Pest Pros today at 703-665-4455if you have a rodent infestation.