Tuesday, October 3, 2023


Will a cat keep the mice out of my RV? Is it worth a try?

As the nights are dipping into the 40s here in the Arizona desert, creatures start looking for a warmer place to cozy up and spend the night. I just spent a couple of weeks getting rid of some crazy tiny ants. But now the guests sound like they are a little bigger.

The past couple of nights I kept waking up around 3:00 a.m. to strange noises. It took a while to figure it out – like those quiz shows that play a common sound and you are to guess what it is. I was guessing heater ductwork and food bags. I was wrong.

Mouse-y in the house-y!

My husband, Wayne, and I took turns getting up to bang on the drawers and the heater vent in hopes they would go away. We knew this had to stop – today – before they discovered all the wiring that is also under the cupboards.

Just last week a friend of mine in Tucson told a story of how a pack rat nested in the engine of her Sprinter Van, causing $2,000 worth of damage. So, I laid there for hours envisioning a pile of twigs inside the cubby space below my kitchen drawers. In my mind, it was a large rat since it was making such a ruckus.

Gotta go!

The first thing we did was pull out all the bottom drawers and unscrew the heater vent cover to have a peek. I was relieved that no nest had appeared, and no visible damage was present. There were a couple of very small droppings, so the story was now leaning towards field mice.

Then I started looking in all the drawers and found evidence of a little midnight snack.

The little critters have good taste. They got into bags of pecans and walnuts, grains, and were trying to get into Wayne’s microwave popcorn. He was not standing for that!

Now came the task of removing their food source. I have most of our dry food in jars or screw-top containers, but now it appears I need to put everything into sealed containers.  The Ziploc brand seems to work best for me. Lids stay on even if they fly across the room when we are traveling (that’s another story).

I spent the morning cleaning drawers and cupboards, putting things without a chewed corner into what containers I had on hand. Drawers are all washed clean of any food source, and traps are set.

There really is no way to know where they came in, as they can squeeze through the smallest of holes. We suspect they came in around the slide (ours is one continuous 24-foot slide).

So now I sit here writing and waiting to hear that dreadful snap of the trap. Hopefully we can get some peaceful sleep tonight. Or maybe we need a cat…


World War III: Our RV vs. pack rats, mice and scorpions
One very easy fix to keep mice and other freeloaders out of your RV



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Bob Schilling
1 year ago

Sandi, without going into great detail, last year we adopted a 12 year old rescue cat. She’s a sweetheart but also a scaredy-cat who chose to hide out in the front dash of our motorhome to sleep. At one point we found that some of the gauges were no longer working. We found several wires in the harness had been chewed and first blamed our kitty. Then we spotted some droppings. We put down mouse traps and shazam, caught a mouse. The mouse had apparently been living happily with our cat. SO… don’t count on a cat to solve the problem… stick with the traps.

1 year ago
Reply to  Bob Schilling

That’s a good story. Like my cat who pretty much sleeps through any nighttime mouse activity.

Last edited 1 year ago by chris
1 year ago

If a cat can get to it, it will (unless it’s an awfully lazy cat). No mouse would dare get within reach in our small RV. We have four cats along! Our house stays pretty pest free as well.

RV Staff
1 year ago
Reply to  Debbie

That reminds me of my dog when I was growing up in the ’50s, Debbie. We lived in a house that had mice which came in until their secret entryway got filled in. My dog would wait for a mouse to come out from under the fridge and then step on its tail and just stand there. I swear she was smiling, watching it trying to get away! Then she’d let it go, to tease it another day (unless the trap got it first). My mom and sister were allergic to cats, so Tipsy was our mouser. Have a great day. 🙂 –Diane

Patricia J Larson
1 year ago

Our cat has definitely caught mice in the RV. Real fun having him bring his still live treasure into the bed in the middle of the night to show us! Since we started RVing with the cat we aren’t finding mouse droppings inside the box while traveling, but occasionally do still find them in our class A’s basements.

1 year ago

No. I’ve traveled with a cat for years and once a mouse gets in, no way this cat is getting it. In fact, I noticed kitty’s dry food was disappearing, so I set up a game camera and found that a mouse was coming out of the slide and stealing food. Cat slept through it all, for weeks. The only thing I’ve found that works is spring traps.

1 year ago

I prefer a rat terrier to a cat. Mine loves his ‘job’.

Tommy Molnar
1 year ago

“waiting to hear that dreadful snap of the trap”. To me, that sound would be music to my ears – ha. ‘Another one bites the dust’.

1 year ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

Actually got two before heading out to a new spot. All gone for now.

1 year ago

Silly me! I was expecting an answer to the question ot the title on the article.

1 year ago
Reply to  Mike

Me too.

Gaines B
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike

So was I! I have a Siamese and believe you me, he is catching every mouse that gets in. He caught three in three days. I have not had a mouse since. There was evidence where he chased them across the dash!

Robert Jobson
1 year ago

try fresh cab works for us

1 year ago

Putting everything into sealed containers, especially plastic, may help a little. Those little demons will chew through almost anything. We once tent camped and had everything stored in a large, sealed, waterproof container with a locking lid.
The next morning we found a quarter size hole in it. The little varmints were still inside.

1 year ago

It really depends on your RV. We have a diesel pusher Class A. Under the floor is basically storage and utilities (Chassis and Coach). The “Wet bay” (water and sewer connections) is probably our biggest problem, if the sewer hose is connected. I seal off around the sewer hose, if it is to remain connected. Once they come into the storage area, they have free reign to go anywhere. Sticky traps work, but we’ve had the “hitchhikers” drag them into the under drawer area in the living area. The other obvious problem, if you have lower level storage, is to keep the storage doors open only as long as you need immediate access.

Just our experience.

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