Natural mice repellents are worth trying. No harm will come from them and maybe, just maybe, they will work for you.
Concern over the miss-use or overuse of chemicals in many industries, not just pest control, means we are always intrigued to learn if there is a natural alternative that is better for us, our children, our homes, our pets and our businesses.
This may encourage you to try out the latest trick or organic repellent that is reputed to be effective against mice or any other pest, and this is, of course, your prerogative. Just bear in mind a few things.
3 Risks to Consider
Now here comes the uncomfortable truth. Something you may not have taken into consideration when debating the use of a natural solution.
Risk #1: The more time wasted on attempting to get rid of mice with natural deterrents, the more time your mice have to breed and multiply. The risk of food and water contamination also increases over time through increased exposure. (A pair of mice can produce up to 2,000 offspring in a year!)
Risk #2: It isn’t enough just to have these natural repellents, you need to know where to place them to be the most effective. How? Well, this is where having a basic knowledge of mouse behavior comes in handy. If you know where mice tend to commonly hide inside homes and what attracts them out at night, you can better decide where to sprinkle your cayenne pepper or other natural ‘weapon’ of choice.
Even if you achieve success and the mice leave, how do you know they will not return again? How did they get in, in the first place?
Risk #3: It is not enough to just repel mice, you need to prevent them getting into your home again. Part of a permanent solution – natural, professional or otherwise – must include the task of proofing your property against any further infestations.
Common Natural Deterrents for Mice
Peppermint oil – cotton wool doused with this product is hotly discussed as the one main natural product claimed to work.
Cats – it is not just the presence of a cat but the smell of their urine which could act as a deterrent. The litter tray in your house is unlikely to ever have a mouse invasion!
Moth balls – Why do mice hate moth balls? The smell is too strong and off putting.
Ferrets – it is the natural smell of ferrets, which mice can find repellent. You should only ever consider buying ferrets if you want one as a pet, not just for the sake of mouse control.
Mint plant – grown in pots around an area or even using dried mint leaves. Spearmint is recommended apparently.
Cayenne pepper – sprinkled cayenne pepper spice is a possible deterrent, and one also used to deter common garden pests.
Tabasco / Hot pepper sauce – for those of us who love our food spicy, using hot spicy sauces to deter mice might seem like a real waste. Of course, you would have to leave dabs of it in multiple areas of your home….and do you really want to have your whole house smelling of this?
What You Should Do If You Have Mice
Act quickly – no matter what solution you choose. This is the most important point to make. If you try natural repellents, bear in mind the 3 main risks highlighted.
The best advice is to rely on a more powerful solution, which has proven results to get rid of mice. Quickly followed up by an activity to permanently block off or seal gaps rodents could use to gain access into your property. Bear in mind, young mice can squeeze through holes the size of a pencil.
An alternative to natural repellents may be found in DIY products – these are often more powerful but again, cannot always guarantee removal.
Finally, if you don’t want to take any chances, the simplest solution is to rely on a professional mouse control service.
Have you had any success with these natural mouse repellents? Are there other natural products you would recommend?
During the winter you probably assume birds will be gone and not a problem.
"Sean is the Digital Content Manager at Rentokil North America. He oversees the company's Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn company pages and is the editor of the deBugged blog and Greener on the Inside blog. Follow Sean on Google+