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The Power of Odor: Unveiling What Smells Do Mice Hate


Despite their small size, mice can be pretty destructive if they find a way inside your house. So, ensuring that your home is as unattractive to them as possible is a must, especially if you’ve dealt with a rodent infestation before.

Thankfully, several odors will keep mice away. Some of these are natural scents that you’ll most likely have access to right now, while others are chemical-based. In either case, these will make sure that you won’t have any mice running around your property.

Today, we’ll look at some of the smells that mice hate and see how you can use them to keep these little critters away. However, before that, we must mention that a clean, well-put house, without any clutter, is good enough to keep mice away. Utilizing these scents is just an extra layer of defense.

What Smells Keep Mice Away

Any smells that are too pungent or intense are great mice repellants. You can place these in areas where mice usually hang around or where you’ve seen them run around.

Peppermint Oil

Peppermint oil is widely known as the smell mice hate the most. And we don’t blame them; the smell is quite intense, even for people. You can create your own peppermint spray by using diluted peppermint oil.

But remember that too much of it can irritate your skin, so keep the spraying amount modest.


Now, here’s a smell that we actually love; eucalyptus. With a similar intensity to peppermint, eucalyptus oil is an excellent alternative if you find the scent of peppermint too pungent.

The application is simple; just dilute some of the oil, and use it to spray areas where you’ve seen mice or potential entry points.

Cayenne Pepper

If you’re not a huge fan of herbal oils, consider peppers or chilies as mice repellants. Cayenne pepper and chili flakes or spicy peppers contain capsaicin, giving them their distinct spicy taste. This is exactly why mice hate it.

However, you must use this safely and modestly. Cayenne pepper and chilly oils can be harmful to you if you inhale them.

Black Pepper

A safer alternative to intense peppers is black pepper. Instead of capsaicin, black pepper has piperine, which is milder for humans, but still very effective against mice.

To use black pepper to repel mice, you’ll need to mix black pepper oil with water and create a spray. You can also add chili flakes or other pepper oils to make it more intense.


Cloves, or clove oil, are both used as rodent repellants, and they are quite intense. Even people aren’t sure whether they like them or not.

In turn, you can spread raw cloves, or spray the oil counterpart, to ensure that mice stay away from your house. However, you need to actually like the smell of cloves to opt for them.


Vinegar is a smell that both rodents and people despise. So, while it’s not the best idea to spray your house with it, you can definitely use a diluted version to deter mice.

Remember to use white vinegar instead of apple cider vinegar. The latter will actually attract mice because of its slightly sweet smell.


Citronella is mostly used to repel mosquitos, but it works equally well for humans. Its lemon-like smell is quite strong, so you’ll need to get used to it.

Since it’s a widely used repellant, it comes in a variety of forms, from oils to candles, which can be placed indoors and outdoors.


Going back to a more pleasant smell, cinnamon is a great way to repel mice, as they hate it. Its smell is too pungent for them, and they’ll rarely come back for an extra whiff.

On top of this, all you have to do is add a few sticks of cinnamon around your kitchen, and you’re good to go.


Minty toothpaste is a great alternative to intense essential oils like peppermint or cayenne pepper. Plus, you’ll likely have some of it hanging around.

Simply spread it across the areas you last saw mice, or use it as a form of caulking for their entry points.


Ammonia is a surefire way to ensure that your house stays rodent-free. Its smell is very intense for mice and any other rodents wanting to stay rent-free in your house. Plus, because of the high contents of ammonia in potential predators’ urine, mice will happily look for a different place to stay.

But, you must be careful with how much of it you spread around. Inhaling too much ammonia can be toxic to you.

Get Rid of Your Mouse Infestation the Green Way

While there are several scents that will keep mice away, and others, like peppermint oil, that mice hate the most, there’s still a chance that you’ll have to get rid of them. In that case, and if you’re in Southern California, look no further than us!

At Green Rodent Restoration, we pride ourselves in eliminating rodent infestation humanely. Contact us now for a free estimate!

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