A house infested with rodents is one of those things you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. On second thought, maybe it’s exactly the kind of thing you would wish on your worst enemy.
Jokes aside, it is a very unpleasant situation that requires immediate action unless you want to deal with even less pleasant consequences.
Once those little pests start popping up uninvited around your house, no place is safe.
Unfortunately, that includes your bedroom.
Can Mice Get In Your Bed?
We know this question has been bothering you: Can mice climb into beds?
The answer is… absolutely.
Mice can climb almost anything, save for smooth metal and glass. They can climb walls, curtains, and are quite capable of scaling wooden bed posts. So there are plenty of ways they could get in your bed. They are also known to be able to jump about 18 inches in the air (rats, which are also common pests in urban areas, can jump 30 inches).
Let that thought sink in.
Now you know they can climb beds, a second question needs to be answered: Do mice climb on beds?
Again, the answer is a disappointing ‘absolutely’.
If you have a habit of snacking in bed, the scent and crumbs might attract them. Even if you don’t – mice get everywhere. They are curious animals that don’t really understand the human concept of personal space, so there is no reason for them to avoid the place where you sleep.
Mice and rats are also nocturnal animals, which means they are most active at night and will likely get into your bedroom while you are asleep. This is the stuff of nightmares!
What happens if they do get in your bed?
Well, aside from the obvious psychological trauma you experience after getting woken up by a living, squirming, squeaking mouse crash-landing on your face, and the damage they can do to your possessions, there are also the health risks to consider.
Mice are known to carry numerous diseases which are spread through bites, contact with their urine or feces, and handling their living or dead bodies. Then there are the diseases spread by fleas that feed on rodents – and yes, that includes the great villain from history books, the plague.
Admittedly, your chance of catching the plague is pretty low in most parts of the modern world.
However, you can still get salmonella, meningitis, or a life-threatening disease called hantavirus from simply breathing in the dust from mouse droppings. Yikes! You really, really don’t want mice anywhere near your sleeping area.
How To Keep Mice Away From Your Bedroom
Let’s make this clear from the start: if your house is already infested, it will be tricky to keep your bedroom a safe zone (more on this later). There are, however, some things you can do to will reduce the risk of mice getting into the place where you sleep.
1. Make a habit of cleaning
Your mother was right: keeping your bedroom clean is important for many reasons.
In this case, it gets rid of the things that attract mice, such as food crumbs and dirty clothes. That pile of laundry that’s been lying on the floor for ages? The perfect place to make a nest, from the perspective of a mouse.
So pick up your clutter, change the sheets, vacuum the floor, and air the room regularly.
2. Purchase a pest control door sweeper
A mouse can get into your bedroom through a hole as tiny as ¼ inch wide. Most doors have gaps at the bottom, and that’s where the rodents get in. A pest control door sweeper takes care of this potential defense breach by creating a physical barrier that mice are unable to cross.
Placed at the bottom of the door, it effectively seals the gap and keeps the pests out.
3. Use essential oils
The power of essential oils is not to be underestimated. It’s a known fact that they have healing properties, but did you know that essential oils are also effective against pests?
Peppermint oil in particular is used as a mouse repellent, and eucalyptus oil has been proven to be effective against rats. This method is great for the bedroom because you can also get fresh-smelling bedroom as a bonus.
In order to use essential oils as a rodent repellent, you need to:
- Dip cotton balls in the oil.
- Place them in strategic places around your bedroom: in closets and drawers, in the corners, near all doors and windows, air vents and chimneys (anywhere mice or rats could get in).
- Replace the balls every couple of days. Essential oils evaporate fast, and this method is only effective while the scent lasts.
Alternatively, you could purchase an essential oil diffuser or an essential oil burner to use in your bedroom. You can also mix two teaspoons of oil with a cup of water in a bottle and spray it around the room. Just remember to refresh the scent regularly.
It’s very important to pay attention to the quality of the oil.
You need 100% pure oils, otherwise it will be a waste of money as many commercially produced essential oils are heavily synthetic, designed for a pleasant scent rather than any useful purpose.
Keep in mind that essential oils are best suited for keeping rodents away, not driving them away. If you already have a mouse problem in your bedroom, you might need heavier artillery. If this is the case, read on:
Mice Have Infested My Bedroom – What Do I Do?
So, what do you do if your bedroom has been invaded and simply vacuuming the carpet is not enough? First of all, you need to define if you are really dealing with mice, or if those could be rats.
The future plan of action will differ depending on the answer.
How to distinguish mice from rats?
Unless you actually manage to catch one of them, or at least get a good look at it, it might be difficult to tell what exact kind of rodent made your house their home. Sometimes all you have to go off is weird noises in the corners and droppings in random places. These little guys are sneaky like that.
The best ways to tell a mouse from a rat are:
1. By looking at them
Rats are noticeably bigger, sometimes reaching the size of a small cat. Mice can be compared in size to a sparrow. A small baby rat may be confused for a mouse, but there are still some signs you can use to tell them apart:
- A mouse’s tail is long and thin (it might be even longer than its body). A rat’s tail is shorter and thicker.
- A rat is more solidly built, with a wide muzzle and large feet. A mouse is more delicate-looking.
There is also the fact that mice have five pairs of nipples compared to six pairs in rats, just in case you are ever in the position (and the mood) to count.
2. By listening to the sounds they make
Mice squeak. Rats squeak, hiss, and make a sort of a chattering sound that’s hard to explain but easy to identify when you hear it.
3. By examining their droppings
Mouse droppings are tiny and look pretty much like black grains of rice. Rat droppings are noticeably bigger and bulkier.
Warning: do not handle any kind of rodent feces without a pair of gloves!
And now that you have established what you are dealing with, it’s time to take action.
Best Ways To Get Mice Out Of Your Bedroom (And Rats!)
1. Call pest control services
The most obvious solution is, alas, not always the most convenient one.
Professional pest control services might be too expensive or simply not a convenient option for you:
You might not have a place to move to while your home is being soaked in chemicals. If you live in an apartment building, the choice is either to coordinate the extermination with all your neighbors or be prepared for the mice to come back in a short while.
Let’s presume that you are unable to hire the service, or have been told you need to wait for a couple days or weeks… there are other things you can do in the meantime.
2. Use mouse traps
If they were good enough for our grandparents, they are good enough for us. A great advantage of this method is that mouse and rat traps are usually inexpensive, simple mechanisms.
There are three kinds of traps you can use:
1) Snap traps
This is the thing you normally imagine when you hear the words “mouse trap”: a snapping mechanism that kills the rodent by pinning it in place.
This is where you need to be sure you are not dealing with rats, because a small trap designed for a mouse will not kill a rat, and might not even hold it. Fortunately, snap traps of a larger size are available as well.
Since they are inexpensive and often sold in packs, you will be able to just throw these traps away after use without having to clean them, which is a great, great plus.
2) Glue traps
These are basically cardboard with adhesive on top. A mouse, lured in with a bait, will get itself stuck to the base. Once again, these will not be effective against the much larger and stronger rats.
Considered inhumane by some, this method implies slow death, so that might be why glue traps are not the most popular.
3) Live traps
These capture the mouse without killing it. Normally, this is some sort of a box with a hole in it that plays on rodents’ natural instinct to explore. Once the mouse is inside, it triggers a wind-up mechanism that snaps the hole closed.
These traps are suitable for both mice and rats, and they are often sold in packs too.
3. Get a cat or dog
Despite generations of pampering, our furry companions still have their hunting instincts intact.
If you’ve been considering getting a pet, now might be the time, and if you already have one – it’s a good opportunity for your pet to let those instincts run wild!
The cat breeds that are known for being good hunters include the Siamese, American Shorthair, Siberian, and, surprisingly, Persian cats. A thing to note is that females tend to be better mousers than males, regardless of their breed.
You don’t necessarily need a cat, though: many dogs, terriers and dachshunds in particular, are great at getting rid of rodents. Curiously, Chihuahua dogs are thought to have been originally bred for rodent elimination. We wouldn’t advise pitting your Chi against a giant rat, though.
A word of warning: if your pets will be dealing with mice or rats, make sure they have all their shots! You might also want to consult a vet about how you can keep them protected from catching anything nasty.
4. Invest in ultrasonic repellers
If the above two methods involve too much blood and guts for your liking, it’s perfectly understandable and you are not alone. Fortunately, technology has progressed and there are now more humane methods to get rid of pests.
One of them is ultrasonic repellers.
The way these repellers work is by emitting ultrasonic waves that drive pests away without killing them. They are supposed to protect your home from not only rodents, but also flies, mosquitoes, cockroaches, spiders, and other insects (yes, spiders are not technically insects, but the point stands).
The ultrasound is at a safe frequency for pets, so you don’t have to worry about your dog or cat, or yourself, being affected.
After you turn on the repeller, it will take from 2 days to 2 weeks for all the rodents to leave your place. One device can keep you protected for 5 years, so it’s a pretty budget-friendly solution. Just make sure to choose the right one for the size of your room or house: different models cover different distances. You will also probably need more than one repeller to cover all rooms of your house.
There are options for every budget out there, but if you are looking for the best mouse repellent that’s also inexpensive and will protect your entire house, you might want to take a look at package deals.
5. Rat poison
This is a dangerous and inhumane method but it exists, so it needs to be mentioned.
Rat poison is very effective against rats and mice, but it is just as hazardous to all other animals, including humans. It is better left to be the last resort, and you definitely don’t want to use rat poison in your bedroom or kitchen.
There are mouse traps with poisoned bait, but once again, do not leave these in places where pets and children can reach.
Preventing Future Infestations
Once you have driven the mice away, you need to make sure they won’t come back.
If you know that your house or apartment is in an area prone to infestation, some protective measures need to be constant:
The pest control door sweep, essential oils and ultrasonic pest repellers will take care of keeping mice and rats away from your place and keep your bedroom a safe, cozy space.
If you are worried about mice getting into your bed, you are right: it’s a valid concern. It is true that mice can climb into beds, and they will do so if your bed smells like food, or if they are simply curious.
To avoid unpleasant accidents, always keep your bedroom clean (and smelling of peppermint :).
If the infestation has happened, don’t panic: there are tools and methods that have been successfully used for centuries to drive away rodents, and there are also newer inventions that take care of it quite nicely.
From a simple mouse trap to a sleek and modern ultrasonic repeller, choose your weapon and start your fight with those pesky mice!