Is it just me, or does killing uninvited houseguests seem a little unfriendly? After all, you wouldn’t use a cruel trap on your annoying neighbor if she showed up for an unexpected visit, so why use them on mice? Here are the top five reasons to be nice to mice:
1. Glue is for crafts, not creatures. Gruesome glue traps cause animals to slowly dehydrate or suffocate to death. Many mice become so desperate that they chew off their own limbs in an attempt to free themselves.
2. Poison isn’t pleasant. Poisoning causes a painful death to mice and any cats, dogs, or other animals who either ingest the poison by mistake or eat the bodies of rodents who have been poisoned.
3. Snap traps can prolong suffering. All mammals, regardless of species, have the same capacity to experience pain and terror. And snap traps, which are not always released on target, can cause plenty of both.
4. Violence is in vain. When mice are killed, more will move into the newly vacant niche. Effective, humane methods of rodent control do not target the animals themselves, but rather, they target what attracts animals to certain areas. Mouse-proofing your house is as easy as denying mice access to food and a place to nest.
5. Mice are nice. Friendly and highly intelligent, mice are just as smart as dogs and can even recognize their names and respond when called. Much like us, mice are highly social creatures. They become attached to each other, and they love their families. Mice enjoy playing, wrestling, and sleeping curled up together.
Mice and rats are often forced into human environments when their natural habitats are lost to development. We owe it to these gentle, interesting animals to do all that we can to peacefully coexist with them. So the next time these little rodents raid your ramen noodles, be kind—live-trap and release them outside.