"Yes. Why?" The other human asked.
That was the moment the humans realized they had a mouse in the house, and began a minor panic. Humans can be really funny that way. They love us, but they're terrified of another much smaller rodent species?
Anyway, the humans got down all all fours, shining flashlights to confirm what they saw. Once confirmed, they immediately rushed out to Home Depot and bought some non-kill, humane traps to catch it.
|Image of the mouse the humans saw not available, but here's a picture of a mouse invading a guinea pig cage from the Happy Cavy blog. (image source)|
Here are some things you should know if you have mice invade your happy guinea pig home:
- Mice can multiply fast. Have your human do something about them immediately.
- Your humans should already be avoiding pellet mixes with seeds and nuts for health reasons, but now you have another reason to avoid them: they're more attractive to mice. Make sure human and guinea pig food is sealed up.
- Have your humans try to seal up gaps where mice can get in, and clean up to eliminate possible food sources.
- Have your humans set some traps to catch the mice. Contrary to old cartoons your humans may have grown up with, mice like peanut butter way better than cheese, so use this to bait traps instead. Traps should be placed along walls, forming a "T", wherever there's evidence of mouse activity.
- Deciding what kind of traps to use may be a difficult choice:
- Definitely avoid poisons, as the mice may spread the poison to the guinea pigs.
- Traditional spring traps can be effective, but not all humans are comfortable with killing mice.
- Our humans are using live traps, which are probably the most humane method, although the CDC cautions that captured mice may urinate and spread germs, so make sure your human doesn't directly handle the trap, and gets rid of captured mice ASAP. Captured mice should be released at least 2-3 miles from your home, or they might find their way back. Another consideration, according to Orkin: "It is important to note house mice are not native to the U.S. and are considered not only health and home risks but also are highly destructive to native birds and wildlife." Or you might just be giving someone else a mouse problem.
- Glue traps can be effective at catching mice, but carry the same warning about mouse urination spreading germs, and the Humane Society considers them to be cruel.
- Sonic rodent repellents have little evidence of effectiveness, and even if they do work, they'd probably cause your guinea pig stress as well. One person claims that one of these devices had bad effects on a guinea pig: "The poor thing was acting strange (running in circles, wheeking a lot, etc) and eventually died in a week or so because of the stress." Therefore, this is not a good option.
- You might consider elevating your guinea pig cage off the floor (if it isn't already) in the case of a persistent mouse problem.