ABC Blog

Do Mice Sleep?

a mouse

If you think you have mice at home, it can be hard to confirm your suspicions. You might hear their squeaking and scurrying, but it’s rare for homeowners to see these sneaky pests in action. That’s because their sleeping habits help them stay concealed from people and grow their population without us knowing.

Here’s everything to know about mice, including the answer to the question: “Do mice sleep?”

It is best to contact pest control professionals if you suspect or have discovered a mouse infestation on your property. They have the tools and expertise to control these rodents.

When and Where Do Mice Sleep?

Just like humans, mice need to sleep. But their sleeping patterns are different from ours. When these pests are active in a home, mice are typically nocturnal creatures, meaning they’re active at night. However, that can change depending on their environment and when their predators are active.

Mice in the wild are usually out and about at dusk and dawn. They have weak eyesight and are sensitive to bright lights, so the low-light conditions during these times are perfect for them.

On the other hand, house mice prefer to be active in the middle of the night when people are asleep because they have less of a chance of running into a human or a pet. However, house mice might walk around in broad daylight if they feel comfortable in their surroundings. They also do this when their populations grow and they start venturing out to find food at other times. So, if you see mice strutting around in the morning or afternoon, that’s a possible sign of a large infestation.

As for where mice sleep, they rest in their nests throughout the day. They build their nests near or inside your home, usually in the attic, garage, shed or crawl space. They don’t usually stray too far from their nests, traveling no more than 30 feet for food.

Knowing when and where to look for mice can help you catch an infestation early. Contact a pest control professional if you spot one in your home to prevent them from growing in number.

a mouse outside

Do Mice Eat Clothes?

The most frustrating part about having mice in your home is their chewing habits. They’ll gnaw on practically anything, with a well-known fondness for cardboard boxes and wires. Their sharp teeth are like tools that help them explore and find food, allowing them to thrive in various environments. They chew on different materials to keep their evergrowing teeth filed down and in good condition.

But, what many homeowners are confused about is whether mice eat clothes. Do these furry pests find their way into our closets and feast on our carefully selected garments? That’s not the case, however. Mice eat things that fulfill their nutritional needs, and clothes don’t fit the bill.

However, mice do chew on clothing, but not for food. Female mice will shred fabric and use the pieces to assemble and line their nests. Fibers like cotton, silk and wool are perfect nesting materials for them. They may also be attracted to the smell of organic material on clothes, including sweat, food stains and crumbs. Also, they chew on many materials, including clothes, to keep their teeth from growing too long.

How to Keep Mice Away From Your Clothes

Mice may not eat fabric, but they still like to chew on our clothes and leave unsightly holes. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent these creatures from wreaking havoc in our closets.

Store Clothes Properly

For any clothes that you keep in storage, store them in airtight containers made of metal or thick plastic with tight-fitting lids. These types of containers don’t have gaps where mice can squeeze through and are too hard to gnaw. This storage method is also ideal for seasonal decorations because mice can destroy cardboard boxes.

Keep Clothes Off the Floor

It can be tempting to let clothes collect in one corner of the bedroom until laundry day. But mice can see those undisturbed piles of clothes on the floor as the perfect hideouts for their young. Always chuck your dirty clothes in the hamper and do your laundry once or twice weekly.

Signs You Have Mice in Your Home

Since mice have opposite sleep schedules than humans, it’s hard for us to spot them during the day. But there are other ways to confirm their presence in your home. Here are some signs that you may have a mouse infestation.


Mice have no manners and will leave their droppings everywhere. Mice feces look like dark rice grains. They’re usually a quarter of an inch long with tapered ends. Fresh droppings are dark brown and will lighten over time. Mice leave their droppings where they feed, including in the kitchen and pantry. The amount of mouse droppings you see is a good indication of how large the infestation is.


Mice make noises that can be a telltale sign that you have an infestation. Pay attention to scurrying or scratching noises at night. Mice usually aren’t quiet when traveling around your home searching for shelter and food. You’ll hear them making sounds in the ceiling, behind the walls and across the floor.

Scratches and Bite Marks

Mice love to chew on various objects to keep their teeth filed. Inspect your baseboards, walls and electrical wirings for scratches and bite marks. They’re usually a pair of parallel grooves.

Oily Smudges

Mice have poor eyesight and depend heavily on their sense of smell and touch to navigate their environment. They will leave oily smudges containing pheromones and scent markers as they feel around your home. Look for these stains along furniture, walls, baseboards and door frames.


The scent of mice is unmistakable. These rodents emit a foul, musky smell to mark their territory. The odor might be more prominent in enclosed spaces like the pantry, cabinets and drawers. If the smell gets stronger over time, that’s a sign of a worsening infestation. You may also notice an ammonia-like smell. This is the smell of mouse urine.


Female mice like to build nests using soft materials like insulation, paper and cloth. You might spot these nests in dark spaces like inside appliances and behind the drywall. Mice also like to build their nests near food sources like the pantry and kitchen cabinets.

Mouse infestations are hard to detect and contain. If you see any signs of mice in your home, contact a pest control specialist.

steel wool

Can Mice Chew Through Steel Wool?

Mice are resourceful creatures that can find entry into almost any home. They are unstoppable for the most part, up until you block them off with steel wool. Steel wool consists of multi-directional layers of stainless steel, serving as an effective barrier against rodents and other pests. The sharp fibers are painful for mice to gnaw through, causing them to flee.

Steel wool is easy to install. Find holes, gaps and cracks around your home that mice can use as entry points. Fill them with steel wool and keep them in place with caulk or spray foam. Use cement, lath metal or hardware cloth to secure the steel wool in larger holes.

However, steel wool is a preventative measure. It doesn’t control the mice population that’s already in your house. So before you plug holes with steel wool, ensure your infestation is under control. You can also help deter mice by taking away their food and shelter. Cut off mice’s access to your food through proper storage. It also helps to dispose of the garbage regularly. In addition, maintain the grass and shrubbery around your home to deprive them of shelter.

There are various DIY methods to make your home less attractive to mice, but these measures aren’t always successful. The most effective way to control these pests is by letting a pest control specialist take over.

Trust the Professionals for Mice Infestations

Mice are common house pests, but they remain a mystery to most homeowners. If you can’t control the mice population in your home, contact a pest control professional. They have the best methods and tools to efficiently deal with your pest problem.

ABC Can Help Get Rid of Mice

Dealing with a mouse infestation is an exhausting experience. Fortunately, the professionals at ABC Home & Commercial Services can help. We can identify early signs of rodent infestations and can create a plan to get the problem under control. This way, you and your family members can be comfortable.

Holt Myers

Holt joined ABC in 2021 as the Electrical & Appliance Operations Manager before transitioning to Division Manager for Pest Control. Before ABC, Holt worked as a Project Manager and Superintendent in Construction. Holt also served in the US Marine Corps from 2003 to 2007. Holt is a member of NPMA’s PestVets, Stewards of the Wild and Texas Wildlife Association. Holt is an avid outdoorsman, who loves to travel and spend time with his wife and daughter.

Learn More

Comments are closed.