Mice and Skunks and wreckages and solutions

Lately I have been hosting mice. I don’t much want to host mice. Once mice get the notion that a place is lovely to live in, they are reticent to move. And by reticent I mean tenacious. So I have been cleaning with bleach more often than I’d like, and trying to drive them out. There is no food here, hardly, and what little I have is kept in those super thick plastic bins with locking tops. No matter. They have chewed through the cardboard backing of the motor on the back of my fridge and moved in to keep warm. Seeing mouse droppings makes me want to sob, and sob some more. It seems futile.

So because of the bleach and all that I left a window open last night. But the skunks in the garden evidently got in a tizzy and sprayed. This morning my place REEKS of skunk. Reeks so bad it gives me a headache and makes my sinuses feel afire, and has me running for the can of febreze, something I’d not choose to use but which the mice seem to find a deterrent. But my burning sinuses gave me an idea: bonfire! So at 4:30 this morning I built a bonfire in the garden outside. And opened the 2 windows that actually open (my windows were installed improperly and most don’t open). Now, at 7:30 am the bonfire has been going for hours and my studio smells like a bonfire. I like it. Comparatively.

But what to do about mice? I have done some research. The main thing is to get mice out rather than kill them. At least that’s my objective. They seem to hate febreze (and so do I, so I can see why) so I sprayed it everywhere. No new droppings. Then I read that they hate mint. So I am going to get some peppermint oil and make peppermint tea and put it all in a spray bottle and spray everywhere. For now the bleach seems to have driven them out and I think the peppermint will keep them out. Till it gets even colder…

When I had a dog he would often get sprayed. And I found the perfect solution in the New York Times. That tomato juice thing is not the shit, this is. So here ya go – what to do if your dog gets sprayed; the miracle cure: do not wet the dog. it gets the scent deeper into their glands and will stay there for a long time. Mix some baking soda with dish detergent. Mix a lot. In a very large bowl. This is no time to get all frugal. The exact amounts don’t much matter. You are in a hurry. You need to get this mixture onto your dog ASAP. So make a nice big bowl of the dish detergent and baking soda so it’s all soupy. Now pour in vinegar. The vinegar will make it foam like a fun science experiment. Balsamic will make it smell even better but any vinegar will do. Take handfuls of the foam and put them all over the dog. Let it sit for a few minutes, as long as you can. Then wash it off. Voila! Nice clean smellable, hugable dog!

If skunks move into your yard here’s how to get rid of them: take a radio and put it in a waterproof bag and place it near their home. Turn the volume up halfway. Not so loud that the neighbors will hear it but loud enough so the skunks will. They don’t like the constant noise and after a few days they will move away. This also works for other rodents. I think i’ll try it for the mice. I’ll let you know how it works out.

2 Responses to “Mice and Skunks and wreckages and solutions”

  1. Gr-r-rover Says:

    The best thing for skunks is moth balls (no, not moth’s balls). Put them where the skunks stay and they will move to another town.

    Now, for rats, ask James Cagney.

  2. The big hardware stores like Lowe’s now carry something that you plug into your outlet. It emits a high pitched sound that drives mice batty and they leave. I was recently traveling very far south, and I had been told that mice had moved into the place I was going. I plugged one of these things into a socket in each of the two bedrooms & one downstairs before I unpacked anything else. No mice for the ten days I was there. I guess that means it works. Probably not as cheap as mint spray, though.

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