Missy Henriksen – National Pest Management Association
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
As I have mentioned before, friends and acquaintances often entrust me with their secret pest problems. I often “pinky promise” that I won’t reveal their challenges with rodents, roaches, or bed bugs because, all too often, people are embarrassed by their unwelcome invaders. Well, yesterday, I got a panicky call from a friend who had a mouse in her house. She was awoken in the middle of the night by her cat chasing a mouse in the bedroom. Yuck! That’s the stuff nightmares are made of! As her husband was out of town, she valiantly trapped the mouse in her husband’s closet. (Payback for being out of town when she needed him most?) She then used an entire roll of duct tape to seal the gap at the bottom of the closet to trap the critter.
Her husband was concerned about potential damage the tape would cause to the closet’s new paint job. My friend was worried about the mouse’s impact on her mental health. I think she had the better argument. Just saying.
She called me to detail the late-night escapade. She explained that she felt a bit safer as the mouse was trapped in a sealed closet. Did I dare tell her that the mouse was likely not alone? Did I burst her perceived safety bubble by explaining the mouse could chew through the tape barrier or create an escape tunnel by chewing through the drywall? No. I couldn’t. Instead, I suggested she contact a pest professional to determine where the mouse was gaining access into her home as I know it’s important to prevent entry by future rodents, not just deal with the visible ones. She was reluctant as she had heard that rodent problems were somewhat unmanageable. I disagreed but anxious to help, I offered my husband’s services to come and get the mouse from the closet. (While I am The Bug Lady – I don’t do pest control myself. I am smart enough to leave that to the pros and instead, I help with public education about pests.)
Well, my husband assisted with the mouse that was in the closet and this morning my friend called me for guidance on choosing a pest management professional. Coincidentally, she actually saw a mouse going into a vent on the outside of her home and my lesson on removing entry points was made crystal clear! Mice can enter homes through openings as small as a dime! I hate saying I told you so, but well, Friend, I told you so! Glad your mouse problem is now behind you. Sleep well…