How to Clean Up After Mice
Mice are a common pest in most places in the world – Wherever people go, mice follow. These little pests cause big problems, as you’re no doubt aware. They are capable of chewing through wires, fixtures, and even concrete, and they deal serious damage. If you’ve had a rodent problem recently, you may still have a big problem – Even if the pests are gone. While you may not have mice chewing things up anymore, their waste is still hazardous. Or, we should say, it can still be a big hazard. Can you get sick from mouse droppings? You sure can – And in a big way. So how do you clean up mouse droppings? With caution. This article will take you through the process.
How do you begin cleaning up mouse droppings? First, make sure the mice are gone and won’t come back. To ensure your mice are gone, lay traps for around a week. If there are no more left, we can start dealing with the droppings. It would be best to wait a week after your last mouse capture as the material won’t be infectious anymore.
You must NEVER sweep or vacuum up droppings, nesting material, or urine. This will break apart dried urine and aerosolize it. If you inhale it, you can become ill. In addition, mouse and rat urine or droppings can spread hantavirus pulmonary syndrome. This is a serious illness that can kill up to 40% of people who contract it. Though it is rare, a little caution goes a long way.
You should then follow the next steps to clean up the droppings and waste:
- Mix one part bleach to nine parts water in a spray bottle.
- Put on latex or rubber gloves and spray the solution until it is soaking wet.
- Let the waste or nesting material soak for five minutes.
- Using a damp paper towel, wipe up the waste or nesting material.
- Repeat as necessary. Each time, place the paper towels in a plastic bag.
- Mop or sponge the area with the same bleach solution to disinfect it.
Throw the mop head or sponge in the same bag. Once you seal the bag, you have to throw it away in a lidded garbage can. Wash your gloves with hot soapy water before taking them off; toss them in the plastic bag. Seal it up and throw it in a trash bin with a lid. You’ll also want to wash your hands – This stuff can be dangerous. In the case of serious infestations, it’ll take a lot of work. You’ll want to wear an N95 mask or similar when working with areas with significant mouse traffic.
Most people who contract hantavirus do so when cleaning up mouse waste. Clearing out barns is one likely area, but garages are also where infected mice gather. According to the CDC, the last case of hantavirus in Florida was in 2012. Before that, it was 2010. Fortunately, both of these cases survived. This isn’t a disease to risk, though.
Even if the droppings aren’t infected, you don’t want to risk secondary infections. Don’t allow mouse populations to grow large, and clear out waste as soon as you’re mouse-free to avoid large jobs. To help you get rid of your mice, call Consolidated Pest Control today. Once the mice are gone, how do you clean up after mice? Cover your face, cover your hands, spray it down with bleach, and use paper towels. Never sweep or vacuum mouse or rat droppings.