Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Mouses in the Houses

So, we've had a problem the past few weeks. A mouse problem, EWWWWWW! I was literally flabbergasted when we found one on the floor the night we came home from watching the Hunger Games. After all, we do live on the fifth floor, I vacuum frequently and we don't leave food out. I never thought we'd get mice....spiders, sure. Those love to hang out on the window screens and I am a vicious spider-hunting killing machine, and I have trained my cat to be a vicious spider killing machine as well (when he notices them). I'm almost not even afraid of spiders anymore. Almost. (For a story about how freaking scary spiders are, click here.) But how the heck did this thingy get in here?

After walking in to our apartment with the dead mouse on the floor (thanks kitty boo boo face!), we originally didn't even notice it. JJ thought it was one of Meeko's fake mice, and he asked me when I bought him a realistic looking grey one (instead of the neon colored ones he has now). Um, never. I don't buy him the realistic looking grey ones because a) I don't want to freak myself out by thinking the toy mouse is real and b) I don't want to think the real mouse is actually a toy. So yeah, we cleaned that one up (after we both did some squealing and near-gagging), I made sure ALL the food was put away and out of reach, took out the garbage and cleaned up our clutter so that if there were any more, they wouldn't have easy places to hide.

Hartz Just For Cats Kitty Frenzy Cat Toy
GOOD mouse toys

Furry Mice Assorted 2 " 12 ct.
BAD, BAD, HORRIBLE mouse toys

JJ tried to calm me down so I could sleep by convincing me that mice are better than scorpions. Which put me at ease for a little while. After all, scorpions are vile, vicious creatures that abandon all right to live as soon as they come into the house, and mice are kind of cute, right? RIGHT?

See how cute I am?


It only took me a few minutes of research to become deathly afraid of the Hantavirus they carry in their poop, as well as the mouse plague of 1993 in Australia to convince me that these little suckers were out to breed and poop enough to take over my home and kill me. Fast forward one week of exterminators, me constantly checking for mouse droppings, obsessively cleaning up food particles, crawling around on my hands and knees blocking mouse holes with steel wool, and trying to utilize cat-friendly ways of getting rid of mice (mint plants?), and I'm finally starting to have some peace of mind. Until I'm sitting on my couch one morning and this little sucker comes crawling out without a care in the world.

And yes, I did the whole scream and pick up my feet thing like they do in the movies, absolutely terrified of this foul beast and thinking I am going to be stuck on my couch island forever. This is when I remember I have a cat, who has proven himself to be a mouser! YES!

Well, I ran and got the cat. He didn't appear interested. He curled up at my feet and took a nap. I moved some furniture. I finally got the mouse cornered behind the bookcase, and still the kitty doesn't care. I do the first thing that comes to mind: I squirt the thing with a squirt bottle until it runs into Meeko, who then proceeds to do his job by catching it.


Except, after ten minutes of playing catch-and-release with the little dude, Kittybeard got bored and let him go unharmed, so it ran back under the couch a smarter mouse. Great, Meeko. Most excellent. Dumb cat.

And I forgot to mention that while this whole thing is happening, I walk into the kitchen to find ANOTHER mouse just waiting calmly as if I'm going to feed it. It runs under the fridge as soon as it sees me.

Okay folks. I'm having visions of these guys running across my face in the middle of the night. I know it's an irrational fear, but I don't care. THIS MEANS WAR.

I was originally not going to get mouse traps, as many of them are cruel (ie, the glue traps), and many of them would only happen to catch a cat instead of a mouse. But after seeing two mice in less than an hour, and seeing that my cat clearly caught the last mouse because it must have been blind/retarded/and or crippled already, I had to make a decision. I bought some covered mouse traps and baited them with gobs of peanut butter, putting them behind the couch, by the fridge, the bookcases, and the stove. And then, I waited.

And then, this morning I check the traps.

Me: JJ! JJ! We caught a mouse!

JJ: So, it's still alive? We should set it free?

Me: No.....

JJ: Wait....you....KILLED IT?


Heavy sigh. I think maybe he thought we were going to keep it as a pet.


Edit: I just watched the Rescuers Down Under and now I'm starting to feel a little remorse.