How to catch a mouse in the house…alive.

No matter where I lived, mice managed to make their way in the house before winter strikes. It is true that I prefer living near the forest but even a bran new house, supposedly tightly sealed, was squatted, on the first year, by mini unwanted tenants. For it must be said, they are unwanted; we cannot tolerate untamed mice in a house. They may nibble on electrical wires, reproduce or exercise their potential role as pathogens carriers.

Quite a dilemma for a person like me who likes animals so much. How to get rid of them without making them suffer. There are four mains types of solutions for eliminate mice from a home:

1. Spring trap
2. Poison
3. Tilting box
4. Glue trap

Cats are not on the list because it is a matter of personality. The one I once had watched mice crossing the kitchen floor in the middle of the day without even raising an eyebrow.

In my first attempts in the fight against intrusive rodents, when I was not yet vegan, I opted for the traditional spring trap. As long as there are no free walking pets or crawling young children in the house, this method is very effective. I have, however, witnessed horror scenes, of which I will spare you, all related to animal suffering further to a non-lethal activation of the trap. Out of question for me to be the cause of suffering for a mammal however small.

The poison then appears seductive for a job without bloodshed. Once ingested it causes an end of life let’s say peaceful but the mouse carcass remains present along with the smell of decomposition, which persists a few days even if it says on the packaging that “vermin” dries quickly. Some of you will recognize the smell of a dead mouse after placing the poison at strategic locations. On the other hand, if, among your neighbors, there is a cat and that it takes the inert snack found shortly after your intervention, it is possible that the repercussions of your gesture exceed the objective.

Believing to have found THE solution I got the small gray boxes, kind of a garage for Matchbox®. The mouse, penetrating the box to reach the bait, transfers its weight from one side to the other, which shut the door, thus sealing the tiny cockpit. No pain involved, you simply need to release the mouse outside. This is what I did several times until I started occasionally forget to check inside the boxes, or had too many delays between my rounds (a the time I did lots of business travels to my defense). The mere fact of imagining the poor mouse’s nightmare that I ended up finding lifeless brought me to find something else.

So it was time to try glue traps. Again, I saw some horror scenes on the Internet showing images of glue traps that did the job; I was really not sure I wanted to try the experience. But I discovered that there were several glue formulations and that some were “softer” which could enable to free the mouse after… even if this procedure was not necessarily part of the instructions.

So I experimented with the brand which offering the softer version. It had been several days since I knew the house inhabited by a tenant with nocturnal habits. The first night after a strategic positioning of the glue trap, I hear, around 1:45 at night, a suspicious noise. There it was, stuck, motionless, its eyes directed on me fearing the worst. The fraction of a second of rejoicing that I felt was soon replaced by the anguish of what could happen now; will I succeed in freeing the intruder without any harm. Always with caution, rodent teeth oblige, I surrounded the mouse with a towel, small but thick, to exert a delicate traction all over the body. Gently I managed to pull it out gradually until the front legs detached from the plate at the very last moment. Only a little bit of its hair remained on the glue plate. I then left it outside on the snow. It went away as nothing has happened.

Success ! At last a nice mean to trap mice, no more mouse in the house.

Some will tell me it will soon be back …. I say: “once bitten mice shy”

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