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April 13, 2012

Unwanted Visitors: The Dangers of Having a Mouse in Your House

“Sometimes when we do a home renovation, we come across some unexpected visitors during the tear down process,” says Monarch Kitchen & Bath Centre president Neil Samson.

On this renovation site (see below), it appears this little guy wasn’t the only one making the house their home,” explains Neil. “There appears to have been quite the party happening in the ceiling for quite some time.”

Mouse droppings discovered during the tear down process of a Monarch Kitchen & Bath Centre renovation.

At Monarch, we pride ourselves in putting our client’s needs first, and this includes being mindful about any possible health hazards. After making this discovery, we decided to do an investigation into the implications of mice infestation and how if impacts our health.

What we found shocked us.

Aside from the obvious nuisance of having mice in your home, there are also serious health risks involved. Mice and their droppings can cause many health problems for humans. The most serious is Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), a rare yet severe lung infection spread by contaminated dust from mice droppings, urine and saliva. HPS symptoms (fever, chills, muscle aches, nausea and vomiting) can take up to five weeks to appear and are often mistaken for the flu. Early detection and early medical attention are the key to avoiding respiratory failure and saving your life.

In less extreme cases, prolonged exposure to mouse urine and their dander can cause asthma, asthma attacks and allergic reactions.

You don’t have to wait for a major renovation to find out if you have any unwanted visitors. Be on the lookout for mouse droppings in your garage, basement and shed. And if you find some, follow the clean-up tips in this video by the Government of Alberta ― they offer a rather humorous take on a serious subject.