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We live in a world where many people are on alert. We have neighborhood watch signs, security cameras, video doorbells, and alarm systems on our houses to deter thieves from breaking into our residences and taking our items. Politicians campaign promising to provide safety through various means and expenditures, hoping to capture our votes. No one wants intruders in their house, so we spend money and elect officials hoping to minimize the chance of being burglarized. 


When we sit in silence in a dimly-lit room after a long day at work and hear something moving in the walls, scratching underneath the floor, or running across the ceiling, we get alarmed because there is an intruder in the house. Based on the sounds we hear, we know it is not a human but a rodent. 


The thought of a rat or house mice living in the house is disturbing and scary. Don't live with intruders in your home; instead, call the Dallas pest control team from All-Safe Pest & Termite. We have removed rats and mice from local area homes since 1984. Our highly-trained technicians have the tools, experience, and knowledge to remove these destructive and dangerous pests from your Dallas home. 

How Big Can Mice In Dallas Get?

 

When there is an infestation of mice, the mice in the house are usually the house mouse. These cute, furry rodents are between 2-1/2 and 3-1/2 inches long, and when you add their tail, add 2-1/2 to 4 inches. They have a dusty grey topside, a cream-colored belly, a pointed muzzle, a round body, and large ears. 


Suburban homeowners that live near wooded areas may have a problem with deer mice. This mouse species, also called field mice, has a three-inch body and a three-inch tail. Because of its white feet, its official name is Peromyscus, Greek for the booted mouse. This mouse species is similar to house mice in size and appearance, but a distinguishing feature is its bi-colored tail of brown and white. 


Compared to rats, mice are smaller. A Norway rat, for example, can be up to 18 inches long (including the tail), and a roof rat is up to 16 inches in total length. Although mice are smaller than rats, they have the same habits and enjoy the same foods. 


Mice are omnivores, and they grow large by eating any food type. For example, mice consume nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, candy, sweets, bugs (crickets, worms, cockroaches, beetle larvae, and caterpillars), and dead animals (carrion). Although mice eat anything, they prefer human foods such as chocolate, bacon, and butter; they even eat soap when it contains animal fat. Mice eat food by nibbling on small portions of their favorite edibles; rats do not sample available items but consume one food item until filled. 


A mouse eats about 3% of its body weight daily, totaling eight pounds annually. The mice store food in the nests they create in walls, under appliances, and in storage containers. A mice infestation can cause an insect problem because of the attraction of the food the mice have stored. 

The Diseases Spread By House Mice 


The natural result of food consumption for any living creature is output, and mice are no exception. A mouse eats about three grams of food daily producing approximately 18,000 mouse droppings annually. One of the signs of mice in the house is feces along runways. Mice and rats are creatures of habit; once they find a food source, they travel the same path between the food location and their nest. As they travel the runway, they deposit feces and urine. The urine contains a pheromone alerting other mice to the food source, and mice from other nests soon travel the pathway. Look for rod-shaped droppings with pointed ends along walls, objects, behind appliances, inside kitchen cabinets, and pantry area. 


Mice forage for food in open trash cans, garbage disposals, sewers, storm drains, and animal feces. Their oily fur attracts dirt, grim, and disease-causing organisms as they travel over these surfaces. When the mice enter, nest, and travel through your Dallas house, they leave smug marks from their dirty fur on walls and objects, and they shed bacteria and viruses onto surfaces in the kitchen and bathroom. While you may notice the fecal droppings of mice in your utensil drawer, you will not see the pathogens polluting your forks, spoons, and knives. 


House and deer mice shed bacteria and viruses. Diseases common to both species are leptospirosis, tularemia, and salmonellosis. House mice also transport lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCM). Deer mice additionally carry hantavirus and adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Some symptoms of these diseases include fever, diarrhea, nausea, breathing difficulty, and cramps, which may require hospitalization. 


These diseases spread not only through mouse droppings in the kitchen and other areas, but they can infect you if you contact a mouse. Some homeowners attempt to stop a rodent infestation with mouse traps, and while they may catch a few mice, they typically do not end an infestation. The disease can spread to a homeowner when handling a dead mouse caught in a trap without proper protection. Also, if you wear gloves but the mouse is not deceased and bites you, pathogens can spread to you through the mouse's saliva. Whether the mice are alive or dead, they can transmit diseases to homeowners. 


An indirect way mice spread diseases is by the fleas and ticks hitchhiking a ride in their fur. When the mice enter the home, these insects jump off onto nearby hosts infecting pets and homeowners alike with bacteria, viruses, and tapeworms. 

Five Simple Tips To Prevent Future Mouse Problems


Avoiding diseases mice carry requires keeping them out of your Dallas house. Before mice enter your home, they are attracted to your property. Mice enter your property searching for food, water, and shelter. When a mouse finds this combination, it alerts other mice, and soon you have mice in the backyard. Moving from the lawn to the house is a natural progression, especially when we experience long, dry spells or falling temperatures. If mice find entry points into your home and locate food sources, they alert other mice by depositing the pheromones in their urine to the food source. 


Once the mouse control services from All-Safe Pest & Termite remove the rodents from your home, these five tips will stop mice from returning:

  1. Remove outdoor food attractants: Mice feed on garbage in outdoor trash cans and compost piles. Other food sources include pet food, bird seeds, rotting fruit, and nuts. Keep outdoor trash cans and compost piles covered. Remove fallen fruit, pet food bowls, and other food sources from the lawn.
  2. Eliminate water sources: Provide proper drainage to ditches, low-lying areas, gutters, and downspouts. Turn baby pools upside down, provide drainage to potted plant trays, empty outdoor pet water bowls at night, and repair outdoor leaking faucets.
  3. Remove outdoor shelter areas: Mice create burrows along poorly drained ditches, walls, or fences; they also build outdoor nests under debris, low vegetation, woodpiles, or concrete slabs. Elevate firewood and move it 20 feet from the house, prune shrubs, cut foliage low, and eliminate leaf piles, excess wood, stones, and rotting landscape.
  4. Seal entryways: Mice can enter pencil-sized openings in the foundation, between incoming pipes and wires, and through gaps between window and door frames and the structure. Use steel wool, sheet metal, wire mesh, or mortar to cover entry points. Use 1/4 wire mesh over the crawl space, attic vents, and chimney openings; repair window and door screens. Install door sweeps under all exterior doors, including the garage doors. 
  5. Maintain a clean location: Should a mouse find a way into your house, you want it to leave by not providing any incentive to stay. Vacuum the house regularly; with a wand attachment, suction corners, underneath appliances, and inside kitchen cabinets and drawers. Wipe cooking and eating surfaces after each meal, clean the dishes, and do not leave exposed food overnight. Store all food products in plastic or glass containers (glass is preferable because mice can chew through plastic). 

Applying these practical, natural steps will prevent mice from re-infesting your Dallas home in the future. 

The Trick To Stress-Free And Effective Rodent Control


The best way to get rid of a mouse infestation is to contact your local professionals from All-Safe Pest & Termite. Our highly-trained technicians know the signs of a mouse infestation, and we know how to identify rodent pathways in your house. Upon determining the runways in your Dallas home, we can locate entry points, attractants, and nesting locations. The signs we see will help us understand the rodent species in your Dallas house so we can create a custom strategy targeting the pest. 


Once our technicians discover the pathways, they will strategically place rodent traps in those areas. If we determine the infestation is based outdoors, we will install bait traps around likely burrowing areas. To prevent more rodents from entering your house, we use copper mesh or metal flashing to seal entry points on the ground level. Contact us today for your free estimate. 

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