Mouse Wars: Who Pooped In My Pantry?

lightsaber mouseSeven years ago, we moved from a trailer that was just a few years old to a house that had over a hundred years under its belt.  We had no idea what we were in for-we did not know that we were trading frozen pipes every winter for other problems of a completely different nature.

It started not too long after we moved in with evidence that we might have a couple of mice running around.  This was confirmed by my mother one night as she was watching the children for us. Not that this should have been surprising to either of us.  An old house in front of a cornfield is prime real estate for field mice, especially as the weather gets cold.

The first clue for me that maybe we needed to do something was when a mouse tried to steal a piece of cheese off the end table in the living room.  It wasn’t like it was the middle of the night and I had simply forgotten to put the cheese away.  I was sitting RIGHT THERE (brave little rodent!) The second and last straw was when I reached into a drawer to pull out a dish towel and instead grabbed a mouse.  The resulting jumping, shrieking, and slamming the drawer shut is something that my husband still makes fun of to this day.

Since then we’ve spent a lot of time plugging up holes and making it at least more difficult for the little buggers to get into our house.  Our cat was an expert mouser, for as big as he was and as much as he liked to sleep, he kept those that did get in check.  But last year our beloved mouser died suddently.  We now just have the cat who believes that catching mice is totally beneath her.  How dare we trouble her with those filthy furry things!  Our dog tries to catch mice, and occasionally is even successful!

We've set traps but they haven't really worked as well as we'd like. Maybe this is why...

We’ve set traps but they haven’t really worked as well as we’d like. Maybe this is why…

We honestly hadn’t seen a whole lot of evidence of the mouse population this past year. Then it all started up again this spring.

Our dryer began having problems a few weeks ago.  The display wasn’t real bright.  Then the display quit “displaying” altogether.  I did everything you’re supposed to do, checked the plug-in, cleaned the lint trap, and begged and pleaded for it not to die.  It was only 16 months old, barely a toddler in the appliance world.

When we returned from a trip home to visit parents, I dutifully got right to work doing laundry so that I wouldn’t be behind the next week.  When the washer was done, I immediately put it into the dryer (which is shocking).


Several panic attacks and online searches later, I was charged with the task of calling LG about the problem.  After being cut off twice, I talked to a very nice young man who was very helpful.  But it was obvious that the dryer was dead. He gave me the number of the local LG repairman.  I laughed when the repairman answered the phone and identified himself, because it was the same person who had come out and declared our last two appliances dead.

The owner, a grumpy old man, and his very enthusiastic grandson came out to check out the dead dryer.  They spent a lot of time arguing about the best way to do things.  I was sitting two rooms away, chuckling because it was almost cute.

Not too long after the arguing subsided a bit the grandson came bringing me the control panel from the dryer.  He gleefully showed me the problem: Mice had eaten through the wires!  That made perfect sense with how the whole thing started to go and then stopped working. Thankfully, all they had to do is sauder the wires back together and be done with it.  Boom!  It was fixed.  They had definitely earned their money by the time they had left.  I was poorer but happy to have a method of drying clothing that did not result in towels taking off a layer of my skin every time I used them.

This made the whole scene from a month or so ago make more sense.  A mouse was running around the living room.  It ran up to both pets who DID NOTHING but stare back at it.  There was obviously something wrong with the mouse.  It was almost acting like it was drunk.  Now we know, we think it got a shock from chewing on all those wires!  I guess if I had been wise to this fact I would have looked for his little hairs standing straight up on his head.

Needless to say, we went right out and bought a lot of mousetraps…

Not gonna happen.

Not gonna happen.

Earlier in my blogging career I shared another story of me vs the mice, the whole reason why I won’t eat chocolate sprinkles.  The answer to this mystery can be found by clicking here.



58 thoughts on “Mouse Wars: Who Pooped In My Pantry?

  1. Oh I think I would die if I actually laid eyes on a mouse. I can tell you when we lived in Queens as I kid we would get water bugs and those were just plain nasty and scared the crap out of me, too. Just hope you get a handle on it and also glad that you got your dryer fixed!!

  2. This is so funny!! You and I have the same problem–except mine is with rats! They chewed through the wires and shut down our air conditioning. $800 later is was repaired. I have learned that rodents can be ridiculously expensive! Love the pics you used with this post, too!

  3. Sarah! Awesome photos accompanying this hilarious post. And WTF is up with a dog and cat not reacting to seeing a mouse? They’ve obviously been spoiled and need to step up their games a bit, don’t you think? Re: the drawer in the kitchen – I’d have freaked out big-time. Tell hubs that your reaction was totally normal and sane.

    • It was weird because since that post our dog actually caught a little mouse in the living room. Carried it around in his mouth and everything. He must have had a truce with that particular mouse. The cat? She thinks everything is beneath her. She is the queen.

  4. MICE suck. Your pictures ROCK! We had one build a nest on the engine of our van in the winter….and they realllllly like dog food. Just saying. If you find a stash of dog food under your couch…it’s not the dog. Your pets and mine need to mind meld – then they can be a little less crazy and yours will chase the mice.

    Chocolate sprinkles are bad. I don’t eat Halloween candy. The candy was hidden in the garage. The bucket was full of mouse poop at the bottom. GRRROOOOOOSSSSS.

    • Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! We had a mousie help itself to the mini chocolate chips in the pantry. Ate a hole right through the bag. I had to throw it out. I know, it’s chocolate abuse, but I wasn’t about to make our granola bars with mouse poop mixed in amongst the chocolate!

  5. I AM NEVER eating chocolate sprinkles again woman…*gagging* We had two mice in our apt…it was horrible…HORRIBLE. We had to put traps out and thankfully we caught them. I am better prepared now, but still traumatized every time I think I hear “mouse noises”

  6. I do not want mice in my house but they do not freak me out at all. I remember as a child when we would get mice in the house, my mom would be up on a chair screaming away while I would corner them and catch them under a container and go set them free outside for her!

  7. I had a mouse experience this winter in my preschool classroom. The little bastards got into a cabinet and had a heyday, leaving their calling cards everywhere. I thought about bringing my cats to school and shutting them in the room, but for what, really? They would have been mildly interested that they were in a different place, but they wouldn’t have been able to catch a mouse if it had glue on it.

    • When the mouser was still alive he and the other cat would sit in the living room and bat a mouse back and forth. Gotta play with your food before you eat it! I would usually end up getting rid of it before they were done playing though.

  8. This post makes me feel only slightly better about my cockroach issue. Mice are nasty. My parents have an excellent mouser cat, but he seems to enjoy playing with dead mice, much to my mom’s dismay. B

  9. We live in an old Victorian home that must be 135 years old. Every fall we have to set up traps. The joys of living in an older house 🙂 When we first moved in we had a cat that kept the little buggers at bay but sadly he died about 6 years ago and the dogs we have don’t do too much with the mice.

    I can’t handle mice, ever. I’m all about being brave in front of the kids but mice and snakes are too much. I grew up in an old home and the cats were always the ones bringing animals into the house. Once they got them in the house, they seemed to lose interest in them. There were many times we would have to scare a bird or a chipmunk out of the house.
    I respect the relative composure with which you wrote this post and I cannot click on your link about chocolate sprinkles. TOO MUCH 🙂

  11. I knew I was going to love this as soon as I saw the title because…been there! Our issue wasn’t with the dryer though, it was our stove. I’m leaving the link, only because it’s totally related and so you’ll feel like you’re not alone. We also had mice chew through the wires on our exterior light by our front door. Two were electrocuted and our fixture was completely gone. Fortunately, my husband was able to fix that…not so much for the stove – had to get a brand new one of those.

      • We were told they liked the warmth of the stove. They climbed in a crack in our foundation, through the wall in the dining room, out the hole where the stove meets the wall and into the stove. Gah! I’ll have to check out Meno’s post on mice.

  12. SHUT.UP. You reached into a drawer and grabbed a mouse? That would have made me simultaneously pee, scream, swear, and faint. Oh, and cry. We have had a few mouse problems over the years, the most infamous occurring when I was home alone with a then-three year old and spotted a mouse hiding in the pantry (what is up with those sneaky hmm-hmmms and pantries?), and I called my DAD who lives ten hours away. What exactly was he supposed to do? My husband, while being a big macho man, is not a a huge fan of mice, but somehow he always ends up on mouse patrol. Also,please note- when I read the title of this post on my iPhone this morning, I thought it said, “Mommy Wars: Who Pooped in My Pantry?” and I thought it was a funny metaphor on the Mommy Wars. Perhaps now I will write a post on that topic- clever, no? Good luck with the mice, mama…

  13. We live in a rural area and we get mice. Well…we did. I think *knocks wood* that we’ve taken care of the problem. But girl, I’ve got some mouse stories for ya! Once, one of my pugs swallowed one whole in the kitchen. We didn’t really feel like having dinner that night. Another time a mouse ran out into the living room past our dimwitted cat. Another time, I opened the kitchen drawer and saw a mouse but omg – I’m so glad I didn’t stick my hand in there. Holy shit, you must have been so freaked out. I would have died.

    • It really helps to look when you open drawers in this house! We could really start a club here, huh? We could even write a theme song. I’m thinking something like the Mickey Mouse Club theme song…

  14. Pingback: Mouse Wars: Who Pooped In My Pantry? | Funny Fr...

  15. The 100+ year old farmhouse we lived in in North Dakota was a lot like that. We had mice that came out at night and an owl that lived in the attic. And coyotes that lived in the back pasture but liked to come to within 50 feet of the house and serenade us in the middle of the night. For being out in the middle of nowhere, it sure was noisy! 🙂

    Great story and thank you for co-hosting my friend! 🙂

  16. You NEEEEEDDD to get more cats. We have three. We have an old house. Mice never survive. Sometimes it looks like a crime scene in our kitchen, but I leave the dirty work to the cats. Then the dog comes in and licks up the remnants. It’s a genius system!

  17. I read this on my phone and just realized I never commented. I so feel your pain! I had mice living in my car this winter! I caught 3!!!! Dude, so gross. So wrong. Get you another cat lady. Get you another cat…. We had an outside cat that moved inside this year. This was the first year their were mice in the car… should have thrown her out. But that would have been sad because she died…. I digress. You are funny and gross.

  18. I lost count of how many times I said, “Oh my GOODNESS!” The first was the mouse in the draw. Oh I would have passed out. I was cringing getting to the dryer diagnosis. I said, “Whew!” I didn’t know what you were going to find. Of course if there was a dead mouse in the controls you would have smelled it but I wasn’t thinking rationally. Anyway, I think it’s old houses period. I didn’t live by a field when I was in middle school. We lived in an old house and mouse traps were part of corner decor.

  19. This reminded me of the time I was helping my parents move – we started packing Tupperware from a large closet and upon reaching the bottom, discovered that the neighborhood mice considered this location to be a giant outhouse, covering the floor with their deposits. Fun!

  20. Oh my gosh I cannot believe you actually picked up the mouse. I was just imagining that happening to me and yeah, I would have panicked. And then moved. This was a perfect post for the humor me blog hop!

  21. We’ve looked at some old houses and I’ve always been worried about the “ghosts” they may have lurking (including mice). You know I love a post with “poop” in the title! 🙂

  22. Pingback: Weekly Wrap-Up: The Father’s Day/Is That A Chocolate Sprinkle or Is It Mouse Poop? Edition | The Sadder But Wiser Girl

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