Do Cats Eat Mice, and Are They Effective for Pest Control?

Cat standing over mouse peeking out of mouse holeIf you’ve ever had an issue with mice in your house before, someone has probably suggested that you get a cat. But how exactly do cats help with a mouse problem, and do they really eat mice?

This article explores the effectiveness of mousing cats and the best cats for catching mice if you want a household companion with useful pest control skills.

Do Cats Eat Mice?

The thought of your cute and cuddly kitty actually devouring a mouse might make your stomach turn. However, cats are natural hunters and have instincts that make them want to approach prey stealthily and pounce on their food.

Wild cats are very skilled in hunting and excel in catching mice, which is why farmers often allow stray cats to stay on their property. Domesticated cats are more likely to just be interested in hunting a mouse and playing with it rather than actually eating it…especially if there is a delicious bowl of food sitting just around the corner. House cats often play with a mouse until it dies and then either leave it behind or bring it to you as a “gift.” However, some domestic cats will actually eat mice they catch. Cats can get sick from eating mice if they are infected with disease or if the mice ate poison left out as bait.

How Mouse and Rat Hunting Works

Stray and wild cats are better at mice and rat hunting than domesticated cats, but even common house cats’ senses get triggered at the sight and sound of a mouse. This is hardwired into a cat’s brain and makes a cat want to slowly stalk a mouse and then pounce unexpectedly to catch it off-guard. Common hunting strategies of cats include crouching low to the ground to watch prey and pulling the back legs beneath them to leap and seize.

The Best Cats for Catching Mice

All cats are different and unique, which is why we love them! But your cat’s typical behaviors, overall demeanor, and where it grew up can affect its ability to catch mice. Also, some cat breeds are naturally better at hunting mice, including the American Shorthair, Maine Coon, and Siamese. Other good mice-hunting cats are the Burmese and Persian.

Who to Call If Your Cat Needs Assistance

Having a cat around the house can definitely help you catch mice and give your pet a fun hobby at the same time. However, some mice infestations are beyond the capacity of a single house cat and require professional help. At Precise Termite & Pest Control, we can supplement your cat’s hardworking efforts and get rid of mice quickly, effectively, and affordably. Better yet, we specialize in pet-friendly pest control to keep your cats safe so that they can continue to help us with our mission of keeping Northern New Jersey pest-free.