Of Mice and Women (ranch women to be exact…)

It’s late.  It’s usually late when I’m sitting at the computer.  The house is quiet.  I’m waiting for the mouse traps to SNAP shut, making me jump off the stool.  There are 8 mouse traps in my sweet little ranch house.  That’s a house on a ranch, not a ranch style house.  Though, in retrospect, it actually is a ranch style house.  If one wants to get technical.  Which at this hour just doesn’t seem all that necessary.

Back to the mouse traps.  8.  Eight.  Ocho (not sure if I spelled that one correctly, but you get my drift).  That seems to me to be a lot of mouse traps.  But then my dear husband finds it necessary to tell me just how lucky I am as one of the other houses on the ranch caught 11 mice in one day.  That’s eleven.  Not sure how many traps they have set.  I wonder, was that 11 different traps or six traps with five of them doing double duty and one going solo.  You see how the mind wanders in the wee hours of the morning?  I do digress.

Back to the mouse traps in my lovely home.  Again, I think eight is excessive.  Problem is…each trap has had at least one mouse in it at some time in the last two months.  That’s how long this has been going on.  We’ve been here just over two years now and nary a mouse.  My husband assures me it’s normal for houses out on ranches, in the middle of nowhere.  For some reason, the beady little eyes and the scaly little tails just don’t seem to affect him the way they do me.  It’s not that I’m scared of a mouse, per se.  I mean, being a veterinarian, there really shouldn’t be any inhabitant of the animal kingdom that would make me squirm.  Right?

And thus, the thought that I really should be writing these things down.  Because I really think my dear husband is wrong.  Yep, that’s right.  W-R-O-N-G.  I don’t think it’s normal.  I think there are people who live lives without traps snapping shut in the middle of the night, who don’t have to figure out how to extricate the corpse of a deceased mouse from the jaws of the trap.    Who don’t wait anxiously in the darkened hallway wondering when the mouse is going to finally die and stop banging the trap around in its’ final death throes on the hearth.  Who don’t then stand in the darkened hallway realizing that the shrill, high-pitched cries are coming from that same mouse in a most unnatural way.  Who then cautiously approach the keening, shrieking, trap-clanging mouse (who had his snout caught in the trap…NOT his head)to finally free said mouse with a stern warning that “You get one chance dude.  That was it.  Next time you’re a goner.”

Who does this???@!?#?  If it was the first time, perhaps I could let it go.  But it’s the second time I’ve rescued a mouse caught in one of the eight traps.  The first had his front paw stuck and was desperately trying to gnaw the trap, thinking somehow he could get himself free.  (Note: nothing I learned in veterinary school gave me the ability to look at a mouse, in all of its’ mousiness and determine its’ sex.  So I refer to them all as he, realizing of course, that they could just as easily be of the female persuasion.)

So what do I do?  Take an empty trap into the laundry room, dig out a screwdriver and see if I can spring the trap without having to touch the furry little, beady-eyed body.  It’s a go.  I throw a towel over the cowering furry being and somehow scoop him into the trash can.  Then I reach down (after much self-talk), grab the trap, pry it open with the screwdriver and drop everything down into the garbage can.  After a call to the husband, NOT necessarily to ask him what to do…more like just letting him know how OUR day was going, I decide the mouse needs to retire to the barn.  But not after placing a small saucer of water in there with him.  The daughter and I trek down to the barn, find a dark corner, lay the trash can down on its side and quickly pull the towel away.  We get one long look from those beady little eyes before he scurries off into the dark.  I tell him, or rather the empty space where he was, that he gets one chance.  And that was it…and to stay away from the house…and so on and so forth.

Do you see the problem here?  It’s all just a bit much for me.  Mouse traps are to kill mice, not maim them and then spring them.

Don’t even get me started about the mouse whose hind leg was trapped, who my husband tossed out the door one morning at 6 am because he was naked (the husband, not the mouse), who then could not be found by said husband 45 minutes later, who then showed up directly outside the door at 9 am (still in the trap, still breathing, barely, with ants all over his snout/whiskers).  Don’t ask me.  Cause I won’t tell you how I hyperventilated, then called the husband to berate him, then squatted over the mouse, sobbing, as I brushed the ants off of him and released the trap.  Don’t ask me how I ended his suffering.  Or how I struggled to hit his heart with a too-large gauge needle with expired euthanasia solution.  Luckily this one didn’t shriek.

And that is why I’m truly mad.  As in crazy, insane, nutso, loco, totally  off-my-rocker.

About madranchwife

Mother, Mad Ranchwife(as in--at times-- crazy, nutso, loco, off-my-rocker insane), Veterinarian, Physical Therapist, "Liberal, pinko, gay-loving, Subaru-driving Socialist" (as I've been called), proud to be a totally tree-huggin', climate change believin', granola girl environmentalist, ObamaGirl, Pro-Choice (don't even get me started here...), and in my younger days a feminist vegetarian as a result of time spent at CU Boulder (this lasted approximately 14 months, until all the Jimmy Buffett I was listening to caused me to crave a cheeseburger). #FindingMyVoice #ScienceMatters
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7 Responses to Of Mice and Women (ranch women to be exact…)

  1. But now the mice think you like them!! That’s why they keep coming to visit you!

  2. Oh dear! The poor little micies! (Yes, that’s a word. I am most sure of it.) Hubby and I have had long debates over mouse traps, as well, since living in rural Alabama. Mom and Dad would always use humane traps, these big contraptions you go get from who knows where. I begged Mark to let me find some. He found some little tiny plastic jobbies, that just trap the mice inside and then, Mark supposedly goes somewhere and sets them free – or takes them to the same “place he takes the stuff for Goodwill”. I might be just evil in thinking he’s not donating clothes and setting mice free. But I know he finds me to be also, ” truly mad. As in crazy, insane, nutso, loco, totally off-my-rocker.” Yes, God is still laughing daily at his matchmaking of a redneck and a hippie!

    I love you, sweet cousin, and I’m thrilled to the ends of the earth that you’re blogging!!!

    • madranchwife says:

      Hey there!! Yes, I was thinking I needed to look for the “humane” ones. And then the tiny terrorist I live with (who is actually now a beautiful, precocious 5 1/2 yr old, so maybe not so much a tiny terrorist)–we’d be making daily trips to the barn, eh?
      Not that I’d wish this on anyone, but good to know I’m not alone in Mouse World.
      The dear husband keeps trying to tell me they’re after water as it’s been so dry. Someone suggested putting out a pan of water for them. ?!?@ As if the stream in the backyard and the pond down the drive aren’t enough water. They have to come here to take a sip from the tap????? Give me a break.
      We’ll see how well I do with the whole blog thing. Like I don’t have enough to keep me busy at the moment and as if my sweet daughter needs a mommy who’s even more attached to the computer than before. Selling on ebay gets exhausting, you know?
      Take care!!

  3. Too funny…or maybe not funny at all! My animal lover daughter would never go for the trap thing. She would want to capture and keep them all as pets!! What about a cat? Or a herd of cats to eat the mice? I have a Mom cat and three 5 month old kittens I would give you in a flash if you lived closer!! We rescued a Mom and 5 kittens back in April…found homes for two…still have the rest. Anyway, good to hear from you. Very well written blog!!

  4. miss.katierosa says:

    you are too funny
    it was definitely a male mouse because a female mouse would’ve known it was a trap

  5. Mic says:

    Cool Debby! I’m living vicariously through you, so don’t forget to include pictures of the property and family (not the mice:)

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