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Home > Cats > Do Cats Keep Mice Away? Facts & Alternatives

Do Cats Keep Mice Away? Facts & Alternatives


It’s well known that cats and mice are sworn enemies. There are even countless cartoons made about the rivalry between these two species. Of course, it usually ends up bad for the mouse because cats are one of the quickest and most skilled predators out there. But the question on many people’s minds is what happens when you welcome a cat into your home? Do the mice leave, and do they even sense that a cat is nearby?

The answer is yes. Mice can easily sense when a cat is nearby, especially if the cat is a regular family member occupying a certain area. They will leave that area knowing it is unsafe to nest or seek shelter there. Stick with us to learn more about how cats affect mice when found in the same place.


Do Cats Keep Mice Away?

Mice can smell cats and usually hide when they pick up the cat smell and it triggers fearful behavior in mice. They usually react to cat smell by running or even freezing. However, when mice spend a lot of time near the cat smell, they may stop recognizing it as scary.

Usually, cats are a great way to keep rodents away from your house. But considering the cat’s size, they are sometimes too big to fit in every possible space. And the problem is that the mice nests are usually in the tiniest holes where cats can’t reach them. Usually, when people have problems with mice, there is not only one mouse but many of them, which is sometimes too much for a single cat to manage.

tabby cat hunting the mouse
Image Credit: Stefan_Sutka, Shutterstock

Alternatives for Dealing with Mice

  • Use mouse traps
  • Bait stations
  • Eliminate entry points
  • Destroy burrows and nesting areas
  • Call a professional pest control specialist

Some of these ways of dealing with mice may not be the most humane, but sometimes it is necessary. Mice are known to cause many problems for people, especially on farms. They can eat everything they see, and mice can even be dangerous because they can carry a lot of pathogens that can be transmitted through bites or feces.


Final Thoughts

Cats and mice are one of the most famous animal rivals, and that’s because mice are one of the easiest targets for cats. Cats have an amazing sense of smell that helps them with finding mice. The only problem if you’d like your cat to control the number of mice is that sometimes, more than one cat is needed to take care of all of them.

Featured Image Credit: Alexas_Fotos, CC0 Public Domain, pxfuel

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