How to Kill Mice in an Attic

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Mice in your attic can lead to a larger infestation.
Mice in your attic can lead to a larger infestation. (Image: mouse image by timur1970 from Fotolia.com)

Mice in the attic can cause trouble. They will eat through wires, wood and stored personal items. Once they're in the attic, it's fairly easy for them to find ways into the main part of your house, where they can cause more problems by chewing on things and pooping. Mice can also carry disease. Most full-blown rodent infestations start with a single mouse or rat taking up residence, so use these methods to rid your attic of mice.

Things You'll Need

  • Traditional mouse traps
  • Wafarin
  • Small glue traps
  • Humane mouse traps
  • Cat

Set up three or four traditional snapping-type mouse traps in different areas of the attic. Bait them with cheese or peanut butter and check them each day. These traps are generally effective, as they kill a mouse quickly and disposal is easy. In addition, there's no threat of the mice dying in some unknown location and causing a bad odor or attracting other pests.

Put a wafarin-based poison in the attic. Ingestion of this chemical causes mice to bleed internally, and some people consider this cruel. Before death, they will get extremely thirsty and leave the attic to search for water. Cut off sources of water around your home (close toilet lids, take up domestic pet bowls), and the mice will usually leave the home and die somewhere else.

Use glue traps or pads as a more humane way to catch and release small mice. You can buy these at most hardware stores and garden centers. Spread several out in the attic and check on them daily. If you are catching and releasing the rodents, be careful; they can and will bite. Release the mice at least five miles away from your home.

Bait a humane rodent trap--available online and at most Home Depot stores--with cheese or peanut butter and set it in your attic. The trap must be big enough to catch the mice or they will escape. Check the trap daily and relocate the mice you catch several miles away from your house.

Get a cat and place him in the attic. If it's not too hot or cold, the cat can stay up there for a day or two as long as he has food, water and a place to go to the bathroom. A cat will quickly rid your attic of mice and discourage other mice from moving in.

Tips & Warnings

  • If traditional traps don't work immediately, leave them baited but not set for a week. This will train the mice that they are a safe place to catch a meal, and they will be caught unawares when you do finally set the traps.
  • Wafarin is a dangerous poison, so use with caution, particularly if you have children or small animals in the home.

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