Yes, Mickey and Minnie are cute. So is Jerry, from Tom and Jerry. However, the cute should stop there. A mouse in your house is no longer a “cute little thing” once you notice what it leaves behind. With the naked eye you can spot fecal droppings and urine deposits that collect in pillars when mixed with grease and dirt, but you’d see even more with a black light.

Exterminators find this unsanitary mess in kitchen cabinets, on silverware, on countertops, in dresser drawers, on clothing, and in so many other areas around the house. If that is not enough to change how you feel about these little mammals, remember that their disgusting habits are a big part of the reason why mice are notorious for spreading diseases, viruses, and bacteria. A mouse in your house is no cute cartoon problem—it’s a health hazard.

Why Mice Invade

For most of the year, mice are content to live outside. Warm weather leads to an abundance of food and water resources, creating an ideal habitat. However, once the winter begins to set in, food often becomes scarce and water sources can freeze over. Mice will find their way into warmer, more suitable areas to survive during cold winters. Often, this means they are moving into your house. Once there, they may decide to start a family and spread throughout your home, so it is important to stop mice infestations in their tracks before they get out of hand.

How Mice Get Inside Your House

Mice are excellent problem solvers when it comes to finding their way into desirable habitats. They are adept climbers and jumpers, meaning they can easily scale the outside of a house to find a way in through an upstairs window or chimney. Mice can squeeze their way into openings that seem far too small for their bodies, so they may make their way in through tiny gaps or cracks leading to your garage or basement. They have even been known to crawl into walls through the spaces between slats of siding.

What Happens When Mice Move In

Once mice are inside your home, they will use their keen ability to smell out any food source. Then they will employ their acrobatic skills to climb and finish with their destructive tendency to chew through just about anything in order to get to the food. Once you spot nibble marks on a box in your cabinet, it is time to throw it out, along with anything else that may have been contaminated as it could make you ill.

And while a handful of mice in your house may not seem like a big deal, when you factor in their ability to quickly reproduce, your problem grows exponentially with their population. Female mice give birth within three weeks of mating and can produce up to ten litters per year, with an average of 6-8 babies per litter—and each of those babies reaches the age of reproduction at about two months.

Professional Pest Control for Mice Infestations

Mice infestations can be difficult to get under control, which is why you should work with a professional pest control company. McCarthy Pest and Termite Control will begin by performing a thorough six-point inspection to determine how the mice are entering your home, where they are holed up, and which methods of extermination will be most effective. If you have a mouse in your house, you could soon have many more, so contact McCarthy Pest & Termite Control today.