Have you started noticing mice lurking around your house since you brought in a guinea pig as your pet?
A mice or rat infestation can be very difficult to deal with especially when you have no idea where the rodents are coming from and why.
You might wonder if your cute-looking guinea pig is attracting mice – we say it is very much possible that it is!
Do Guinea Pigs Attract Mice?
Yes, Guinea Pigs can attract mice!
While they don’t attract mice directly, their food, dirty living environment, or poop buildup may be the culprits.
Mice are naturally attracted to unmaintained environments. They like rummaging through piles of trash in search of food and living in dirty places.
Hence, if the cage or living space of your guinea pig is not clean and has bits of uneaten or half-eaten food lying around, it may invite mice to pay a visit to your pet’s enclosure.
Not only is the thought of having a mouse running around your home creepy but dealing with them around your guinea pig’s cage can be frustrating.
Is it Dangerous to Have Mice around Guinea Pigs?
You should never allow mice around your guinea pigs. Mice can hurt your pet badly, sometimes eating them partially.
They can even outright kill them.
Always remember, mice have a natural tendency to fight and be aggressive and your guinea pig won’t stand a chance against them.
Apart from the high risk of injury to your pet, mice bring along the danger of spreading harmful diseases.
Guinea pigs can get infected with Salmonella, Leptospirosis, Tularemia, Hantavirus, and Lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCMV).
Mice transmit these diseases through their bite, urine, or droppings.
Please note that these infections are not only dangerous for your guinea pigs but also for your family members.
13 Signs That Indicate Your Guinea Pig is Sick
If your guinea pig shows the following symptoms, you should immediately consult with a vet and get them checked, as these may be the signs of the virus spreading in their body.
- Refusal to eat or drink
- Dull, receding, crusty eyes
- Excessive scratching
- Hair loss
- Frequent sneezing
- Puffed-up or rough coat
- Blood in urine
- Watery stool
- Difficulty breathing
- Loss of balance and/or limping
- Unusual behavior pattern
Keeping this in mind, you should prevent mice infestation at your home and keep your guinea pigs well protected from these rodents.
How Are Mice Attracted to Guinea Pigs?
The living environment of your guinea pig can attract mice.
The following are the major factors that you should keep in mind to prevent mice infestation around your pet.
Dirty Living Environment
As the owner of a guinea pig, you must have an idea of how messy these little creatures can be.
It may get overwhelming for you to keep their living environment clean and organized at all times but it is critical to keep any mice away.
Guinea pigs love to spread their food and poop all around the cage – and this creates the perfect environment for mice, giving them the pleasure of scavenging through the pile of poop and searching for food.
Mice also look for such environments when it comes to nursing their babies.
The food items that you treat your guinea pig with, including vegetables, food palettes, and fruits are also major attractants for mice.
When your guinea pig doesn’t finish the food and leave it around the cage, it invites the mice for a feast.
The best way to prevent the issue of leftover food is by putting just enough food at a time.
Many owners don’t have the idea of how much food to put in for a meal or perhaps they prefer putting too much when going out for the day.
This often results in leftover food attracting other animals, including mice and bugs.
Guinea Pig’s Poop
When we say mice are attracted to food, we also mean undigested food that remains in the guinea pig’s poop.
It might sound gross but it’s true!
If you have a habit of leaving your pet’s cage unclean for days, you may notice a buildup of poop, which won’t only make the cage stinky but also attract mice.
Perfect Spot for Nesting
Like all warm-blooded animals, mice are always on the lookout for a comfortable, cozy place for nesting.
During harsh summer days, water may be scarce in the area and hence, mice may wander around looking for a source of water.
They may pay a visit to your guinea pig’s cage that offers freshwater for drinking.
This, however, happens quite rarely, as most of the time, it’s the food that mice are looking for.
How to Keep Mice Away from Your Guinea Pigs
Now that you know the top reasons why mice are attracted to guinea pigs or rather their living environment, let’s discuss some ways to prevent them from invading your pet’s space.
Remove All Leftover Food
Since food is the primary reason why mice like to be around your guinea pig’s cage, you should start by getting rid of all the spare food.
Ideally, you shouldn’t serve all the food at once, as your pet might not be able to eat everything in one go.
It’s always best to serve the meals in two or three small portions in a day. This will significantly reduce the amount of uneaten food in the cage.
In case you do find some leftover food, make sure you remove it within a few hours before its smell reaches the mice.
Use a Rat Trap
Now, catching mice with a rattrap might sound old school but it still works wonders to keep them away from your guinea pig.
We suggest you use a trap that only catches and not kills them.
Once you trap the rodent, you can leave them free somewhere far away from your house.
You might be tempted to use traps that kill the rodents but it’ll be better to steer clear from them unless you want to get your hands dirty.
Apart from this, if you end up killing a mouse in some hard-to-reach area or inaccessible location, your house will start stinking after a few days.
You’ll have to go through the struggle of finding the dead body and getting rid of it.
Scare Them Away with Peppermint Essential Oil
If there’s one thing that mice don’t like, it’s peppermint essential oil.
They don’t find its smell attractive and so, it can help you keep them away from your guinea pig.
To try this simple and natural DIY mice-repellant remedy, simply dilute some peppermint oil in water and spray it around all potential entryways.
Disclaimer: Guinea pigs have a powerful sense of smell and the scent of peppermint essential oil can make them sick. Make sure you don’t spray it around their cage or when they are around.
Place the Cage at a Height
Raising your guinea pig’s cage won’t directly help in getting rid of mice but it surely will make it difficult for them to reach the food in the cage.
Ultimately, when food won’t be accessible at the ground level, the mice may not bother coming in.
If you’re using a hutch for a cage, you can simply add some additional legs to increase its height.
On the other hand, if you have a C&C cage, you can make a loft with some grids to give mice the challenge of climbing up high.
For a midwest or a similar enclosure, you can simply use a table or a furniture piece to place the cage where mice won’t be able to reach your guinea pig.
Guinea Pigs Keep Mice Away: Is It True?
Many people believe that guinea pigs help in keeping mice away from their enclosure. You might have gotten the same advice as well.
However, this is nothing but a huge myth!
In most cases, guinea pigs do NOT help in keeping mice away.
Sure, some mice may be scared little creatures who only want to spoil your guinea pig’s cage and eat their food with no intention of harming them.
However, if they get aggressive, your pet won’t be able to fight them.
Busting this myth, we’d like to make it clear that you should always keep mice away from guinea pigs for both health and safety reasons.
The Bottom Line
While mice may come into your house because you have a guinea pig as your pet, the guinea pig itself won’t directly be attracting them.
Mice get attracted to excess food in the cage, poop buildup, and soiled and dirty living space.
They may also find a comfortable nesting spot in your pet’s enclosure.
Keep in mind that mice aren’t good for your guinea pigs, as they may injure them or cause a wide range of diseases among them.
Hence, you better keep mice away from your guinea pig at all costs!
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