Friday, April 18, 2008

Rodent Alert.

For the second time in two days I have been attacked by a mouse! To be fair, it probably sees it as escaping but as far as I'm concerned a mouse - a large mouse - dropping on your head and skittering down your arm constitutes an attack.

This irritating little beastie has been in the house for a couple of months. It disdains all traps no matter how tempting the bait but the cat is definitely looking more svelte. This may be in part due to the strict diet he's been on for about six months - expensive vet prescribed calorie controlled food at that - but he is certainly getting the work out component via the mouse.

I think it has realised its days of grabbing a snack whenever it pleases are long gone because, now every bit of potential sustenance is removed or covered every evening, it is getting a tad desperate. It is currently busily and slowly gnawing its way through the wire of the family room screen door. We wake during the night to the sound. Puss then slowly unwinds himself from his favourite sleeping position around my feet and stalks out to investigate. He returns about fifteen minutes later swearing loudly as only cats can do.

The hole is big enough for it to pass through but it has encountered a more difficult barrier in the glass door behind it. This may be why on the last two mornings the dog has discovered it hiding in the track between the screen and glass doors in the dining room. It can get in here more easily because the plastic flap supposed to block unauthorised rodent entry has given away under the weight of years so it can slip past and rest its sore gums.

Jaz and Cadillac deal with this situation in very different ways. Jaz alternates between scratching on the wire and jumping at the door. Surprisingly given her tendency to bark excitedly in stressful moments, she doesn't even whimper. Cadillac (cat, master predator), on the other hand, sits behind Jaz, paws neatly placed together observing er ready to pounce - and miss because Jaz invariably gets in the way - once the mouse has been flushed out.

Not being completely stupid, the mouse takes all this quite calmly until I either open the curtains or the screen door. It then panics er attacks, races up the nearest vertical surface - door or curtain - so it can drop on my head, scuttle down my arm and race off to shelter, usually behind the sideboard. I might have believed this was an accident if it hadn't happened twice. So - and this is the mouse's decision - it's war. Posts from the front will be delivered as they come to hand.


Carol Ryles said...

We had something living in our ceiling which would make lots of scuffling noises at night. Being fond of mice, I didn't want to set a trap and our cat is definitely no hunter, so I let it be, telling myself when summer comes, it would get too hot in the roof and the thing would move out. Mice are resilient aren't they? It didn't mind the heat. Then last week, I saw a huge rat on the decking and decided enough was enough. Against my humane sensibilities I stuck some rat bait in the ceiling. Two days later I found the body of the cutest little mouse ever curled up by the laundry door in my daughter's sock. I felt soooooo bad about that. The noises in the ceiling have stopped, but there's still a rat stalking the decking. Agghhh, I feel like a murderer.

Imagine me said...

I hate using baits but the rat situation is getting out of control around here too. The rats don't seem to be taking the baits though which is a real problem. We have tried every trap on the market along with every suggested bait for them and the rat just laughs as far as I can see while the mouse at least is trying to escape. I'd stand there and let them out if they asked.

Carol Ryles said...

Oh dear, I think our rat is doing the same. I'm thinking about borrowing a friend's Jack Russell who is very good at catching rats! My dog and cat have gone into denial about the presence of Rodents!