Or a better way to store dog food. Read on …
Wow. Did I have one of those days that just keep getting, let’s say, “more interesting”!
I was cleaning the top of my stove after breakfast and I noticed these little black things that sort of looked like mouse poop by my clever brain decided to tell me they were some spices left over from a cooking party I had some time ago.
I thought to myself, “I’m sure I cleaned since then but how could a mouse possibly get on top of my range.” By the was I have two ranges next to each other and they both had the little black spices. Total denial…
Later that day I was vacuuming the floor and noticed this same black slivers near my stove so I move a couple containers I keep for the salt water tanks and who hoo! There was a lot of mouse poop behind my stoves.
OK ; so I move those stoves out, vacuum inside and out, bleached the floor and looked inside the oven. There were just a couple of mouse droppings so I vacuumed that up and decided to self clean the ovens to sterilize them. They were not dirty inside at all.
I also set a couple mouse traps with peanut butter, irresistible to mice and dogs (so be careful so block these from your dog)!
I turned them on then went into my living room to spend some “quality time” with my daughter watching a rerun of “Project Runway”.
After about twenty minutes or so my husband walks into the living room to question the amount of smoke coming out of the ovens. I jumped up to take a look.
OH MY GOODNESS!
There were tons of smoke pouring out of the top of each of them. Enough to increase global warming! Or so much that the huge exhaust fan that is over the ranges couldn’t keep up. The kitchen was half filled with smoke.
We turned off the self cleaning ovens, moved out parrots to the other room and opened as many windows as we could all the while monitoring the smoke billowing out of the ovens exhaust vents.
Then we found the fire extinguisher and decided whether or not to call the fire department. With all that smoke something was definitely burning, however, we had shut the gas off to the ovens.
Thinking that the fire department might cause even more damage than had already happened, and not seeing any actual flames, we decided to wait it out, cell phone in hand.
Eventually the smoke subsided and we went to sleep after google-ing every combination of “smoke and self cleaning gas ovens” we could think of – no help.
After taking kids to school the next morning, (today Nov 2nd) I called an appliance repair company to come and diagnose the problem. They can’t make it here for five days. Well I’m much too curious to know what the heck is happening so I decided to take apart the stove myself.
After finding all the tools I needed, I gradually started taking layers of the appliance apart. The top is sealed — to humans. When I got the cover off I found that some tiny little mouse had been storing my dog’s food pellets, one by one, in the fiberglass insulation around the stove top.
It was piled up in there, lots of it.
I’m sure as I take the range apart some more that I’m going to find more piles of the stuff in every nook and cranny of the range.
So the moral of the story is, if you live in an area with mice or in an old house with many possible mouse holes, feed your dog, then put away the dog food dish if there is any uneaten dog food, so the mice or whatever lives in your house when you are asleep can’t get it.
I think the mice probably were getting handouts from the birds too.
You also need to keep your dog food stored in airtight (or mouse tight ) containers. Once I had an open bag and discovered a cute little mouse feasting in there. My daughter didn’t like it though when she reached in to grab some dog food.
Had my husband not walked into the kitchen in time a real huge fire could have started and this story might have a much worse ending. I guess now the worst that can happen is that I’ll need to replace my stoves.
PS. I caught a mouse in one of the traps.
If you have any suggestion about how to get the smoke smell out of my house I’d sure appreciate it. Leave a comment. Thanks.