While Mice can look cute and cuddly, they can spread more germs than people realize. If a mouse is spotted in the house, the likelihood there are more is very high. The most mouse activity found in a home is between October and February. Mice are looking for food, water and shelter for the cold winter months.

Once a mouse has entered the home, it doesn’t take long for them to multiply. A female mouse can begin giving birth by two months old and will have baby mice 6 to 10 times a year. The average lifespan of a mouse is only a few months as they are easy prey for things like cats, snakes and fox. 

House Mice

Color: Dusty gray with a cream belly

Shape: Round

Size: 2 1/2 – 3 3/4″ long

Legs: 4

Region: Found throughout the United States. 

Deer Mice

Color: Brown, with white feet and underbelly

Shape: Round

Size: 5 to 8 inches long

Legs: 4

Region: Found throughout the United States


Rats have an excellent sense of taste. Rats can identify substances, such as rat poisons, after just a little taste of it. They also have an excellent sense of smell and touch. This helps direct them to food sources. Rats are scavengers and will eat just about anything to survive. Rats have strong teeth that allows them to chew through objects like glass, wire, lead and more! 

Rats can live up to 18 months, but most will die before they reach a year old. 

Rats are responsible for the spread of the “Black Death” or the bubonic plague. Fleas are primarily responsible for the spread of this to humans, but fleas were originally infected with the plague by feeding on rats. 

mice and rats.

Roof Rats

Color: Brown with black intermixed; Gray, white or black underside

Shape: Long and thin with scaly tail; large ears and eyes

Size: 16″ total (6-8″ body plus 6-8″ tail)

Legs: 4

Region: Coastal States and Southern Third of the United States

Norway Rats

Color: Brown with scattered black hairs; gray to white underside

Shape: Long, heavily bodied; blunt muzzle

Size: 7-9 ½ inches long

Legs: 4

Region: Found throughout the United States