Will Mice Leave if No Food? {Can I Starve A Mouse?}

I might know how you feel. You’re sick and tired of mice or any other rodents around your property. You want them to leave.

You decide to remove all available food sources, seal all containers and now you’re wondering, “Will mice leave if no food is available to them?”

How long is a mouse going to hang around your home if there is no more food or water for it? For example, if you seal a mouse inside a wall and you’re sure that it cannot get out, how long is it going to survive in there without food or water?

In this article we will find out, will mice leave if no food sources are present?

Will Mice Leave If No Food?

It is not as easy as getting rid of food for a mouse to leave. A mouse is looking for a warm, dry place for shelter. They are looking for safety from potential threats and predators.

A location with a lack of food may not be enough to hinder a mouse or force it to leave. A mouse can find an entry and exit points from ceilings or walls or anywhere around your property to go out foraging for food and bringing it back to the nest.

A mouse has the capability of hoarding food in multiple caches around their territory. Reducing or eliminating food sources around your house is not enough to make them go away.

Will a Mouse Leave if There Is No Food Source?

Of course a mouse needs to have a food supply in order to survive and procreate. If you have moved or removed all of the food available, a mouse will not be able to continue reproducing at such a fast rate.

They will be forced to either leave or find other food sources and bring it back to this nest. Your aim is to eliminate the nest and prevent a mouse who is out foraging for food from ever returning.

Will a Mouse Go Away on Its Own?

If a mouse has found a warm, dry place for the winter, it will not go away on its own. As spring arrives, a mouse will have to leave the nest if there are no food sources available.

Mice are dangerous pests that could harbor multiple diseases. They are capable of spreading the hantavirus which is something we wish to avoid at all costs. Mice can also bring in bed bugs and fleas among other parasites.

The truth is, might as well not just leave on their own. If a mouse has established a nest on your property, then they will try to forage for food in the nearby vicinity and bring it back.

You need to repel, deter or exterminate these resilient pests if you wish to get rid of them once and for all.

How Long Can Mice Live in Walls Without Food?

A mouse can still survive for months without any water source or food in between the walls of your home. They can survive on the condensation that coming off pipes in your walls. If there is absolutely no food whatsoever, mice can live for about a week.

There are cases of mice being able to survive up to 2 weeks without any food. More often than not, mice are able to create caches of food, if there is an entry or exit point from the location that they are hiding in.

They may have stored food and may be able to survive for several months

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Why Mice Probably Will Not Leave On Their Own

Getting rid of mice is a major part of the pest control industry itself. You will not be able to get rid of them by simply waiting them out or getting rid of their food supply. You will have to think about rodenticides or mouse traps.

  1. If you continue to see mouse droppings the size of grains of rice, then you are still a victim of an infestation.
  2. Mice can reproduce at a rapid rate. You might need a professional extermination or pest control company to assess the amount of mice that could be living around your property.
  3. You may also need to set more traps by using baking soda, borax acid or diatomaceous earth mixed with peanut butter or chocolate.

How Long Can Mice Go Without Water?

All animals need water to survive. This doesn’t mean that they need direct water sources however. A mouse can survive off the condensation around the exterior of pipes. In this way, mice can survive several days to several months.

If a mouse can get direct water from a stream, lake or puddle they are able to survive for an indefinite amount of time. Mice can sneak around your home and find water sources from your pet’s water dish for example.

Mice can also receive hydration from wet food that they consume such as rotting fruits or vegetables. If there is absolutely no way for a mouse to hydrate itself, it may die within a day or two.

How Long Can Mice Go Without Food?

A mouse can only go about 2-4 days without receiving some sort of nutrition. Mice nibble on all sorts of food supplies that we don’t even notice. The tiniest crumb can sustain a mouse for another day.

They can find morsels of food on the road and survive for another week. Mice also like to hoard food in multiple locations known as caches. They will use these as their emergency reserves when they run out of food.

It is essential to have some food stored away during the winter when mice are still actively alert and able to survive in their nests with reduced activity.

Can I Starve a Mouse?

It is going to be extremely difficult to clean your house and make sure there are not even one or two crumbs of food available for a mouse to consume in the middle of the night.

If you are absolutely confident that a mouse has no available food sources left in your phone or property, in about 2-4 days of waiting, they will either leave or die.

If a mouse has any access to food hidden in locations that you cannot find, it could take several weeks before they starve to death.

During this time, if a mouse has an exit point, they will leave your property and forage for food to bring back to their shelter that is located somewhere around your home.

Why Would a Mouse Linger in a Room That Doesn’t Have Food in It?

Just because there isn’t food in a room doesn’t mean a mouse doesn’t want to be there. They could find entry point in this room and use it to access other rooms.

A mouse can fit under a door that is only showing a gap large enough for a pencil to squeeze underneath. This mouse will dislocate its skull and flatten its ribs to squeeze underneath the doorway.

It will make its way over to a location where they can find:

  • morsels of food
  • pet food
  • anything in your pantry
  • behind your appliances

If you know that a mouse is inside a room that contains no food sources, set a trap for it. Simply use peanut butter on a paper plate with:

  • baking soda
  • boric acid
  • diatomaceous earth

A mouse will consume it and die within a day or two.

When and Where Will Mice Stockpile Food?

There are many rodents such as a mouse that has the ability to store food to prevent starving. When supplies are limited, they can use stored food to stay alive for an indefinite period of time.

There will be caches of food hidden near their nest in impossible to reach locations around your house.

These stores of food can also lead to insect infestations as well. You don’t know the type of food that’s being hidden away in between your walls or in the ceilings. It can attract all sorts of insects as the food begins to rot.

Not only that, bacteria, parasites and illnesses can develop. At this point, you will need an inspection from a professional pest control service. They will assess whether or not a mouse has been storing food inside your home.

Mice Hoarding Dog Food

If you’re like me, you tend to leave your dog to eat as much of its food in its bowl as it wishes. My dog never finishes the food and likes to leave some behind in case of emergency or as a midnight snack.

Unfortunately, I’m leaving the bowl open to critters and rodents who may end up with a free meal. A mouse can easily pick up a morsel of pet food and bring it to its nest without me noticing.

This is why I must pick up leftover food even if my dog has not finished eating. I have to learn the hard way with an infestation or I need to finally take my own advice and remove any unsealed food to prevent mice from opportunistically stealing my dog’s food.


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Jason Barrett

Hello, I'm Jason. I have 11 years of experience in dealing with pests. I try to provide you the best information that'll help you to make the pest control process easy & affordable