Can You Kill Mice With Toothpaste? Should You?

Written by Kyle Glatz
Published: July 31, 2022
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Although some people see mice as loving pets, they are pests to others. A mouse’s inherent abilities to fit into small holes, breed quickly, and eat various foods have led to them being a constant problem for pest control efforts. Many methods of exterminating or relocating mice have been developed in recent years. That has led to people asking if many different household items can kill mice. For example, can you kill mice with toothpaste, and should you do so?

We’ll look at this common, often minty creation and see if it has what it takes to kill a mouse. We will also explore whether or not it is worth the effort to kill mice with this item!

Why Would You Want to Kill Mice?

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Pet mice are wonderful, but wild mice are not.

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Before we look into ways to kill mice, we have to wonder why we want them dead in the first place. The reason that humans often need to kill mice is that they’re invasive pests.

Some of the more specific reasons people want to kill mice include:

  1. Mice can breed quickly and produce as many as 30 to 70 babies a year.
  2. Many mice are carriers of diseases that spread to humans, including the hantavirus.
  3. Mice will utterly ruin any food that they touch, making it inedible for the people that bought it.
  4. Mice love to gnaw on things, including wires for your electronics in your home.
  5. Mice tear various materials to build their nests, including paper products, vinyl, wood shavings, and more.
  6. When mice infest a home, people can hear them scurrying throughout the night, often inside the walls.

These are just a handful of the reasons that people want to exterminate the mice in their homes. To be fair, they are very good reasons. Sometimes, people want to catch and release the mice. While that’s feasible for a mouse or two, it’s certainly not going to help during a widespread mouse infestation.

When that happens, it’s time to use techniques with a final end to them.  

Can You Kill Mice with Toothpaste?

Pet Mice

Toothpaste could kill mice, but it’s not the most reliable method.

©Rudmer Zwerver/

Yes, you could technically kill mice with toothpaste, but it would be very difficult to get them to eat enough that it would be fatal. Apparently, mice that eat toothpaste that contains fluorine and ethylene glycol would die from those ingredients if they consumed enough of them.

Some people insist on making a deadly concoction from toothpaste, peanuts, flour, sugar, and various other ingredients. The theory is that the mice will inadvertently eat the snack thinking that it is a treat. Once they consume enough toothpaste with fluorine and ethylene glycol, they will eventually die.

Using toothpaste to kill mice is a proposition that has several problems. For starters, mice need to eat a lot of toothpaste to kill them. They’re more likely to eat the tasty bits, like peanuts, and avoid the toothpaste altogether. Why? Well, the second problem with this method is that mice don’t like minty kinds of toothpaste, the most popular flavor on the market.

Another problem with using toothpaste to kill mice is that so many other products can more effectively kill mice. Why would you use a product of questionable efficacy when so many others are available on the market?

So, can you kill mice with toothpaste? Yes, but it’s going to be a difficult trial that is not likely to work. You’re far better off using more effective, tested methods.

Effective and Reliable Ways to Kill Mice

Cat with dead mouse

Cats are expert mouse hunters.

©Astrid Gast/

Now that we examined toothpaste as a means to kill mice, we are going to spend some time looking at more effective means to end them. Consider several ways to approach the task of ending a mouse infestation in your home.


Rather than toothpaste, you can rely on commercial poisons to kill mice. They are formulated to attract mice based on their sight and smell. These poisons come in many forms. Often, they are packaged in small packets that entice the mouse to chew through them.

After the mice eat enough of the poison, the anticoagulant takes effect. Essentially, the mice suffer internal bleeding until they die. Although poisons are not 100% effective on mice, they offer a much higher chance of killing the mice than toothpaste.


Another highly effective way of killing a mouse is by using mouse traps. You can find several different types of traps, including:

  • Spring traps
  • Glue traps
  • Humane traps
  • Electrical traps

The spring traps are the most basic ones, sending a metal or plastic bar down rapidly to dispatch mice. They don’t always kill mice, though. Sometimes, they will spring the trap and avoid it. Other times, mice will get a foot caught in the trap rather than their heads.

Electrical traps are also effective, killing the mice with a shock. Glue traps stick to the mouse, disabling their movement and leaving them for you to dispose of them. Humane traps keep mice in a canister so you can move them.

All these traps have the potential to kill mice or put them in a position where you can dispose of them. Each of them is better than toothpaste.


Back in the old days, pets had to earn their keep. Cats were often kept around in barns and other outbuildings on farms to control mice populations. After all, cats kill mice even if they’re not going to eat them. They enjoy the thrill of the hunt.

Getting a cat or a dog could help cut down on mouse populations in your home. They will kill the small mice. Moreover, mice will smell cats around your home and avoid coming inside. After all, they don’t want to encounter a feline.  

We’ve looked at the question, can you kill mice with toothpaste? While it’s possible, it’s not the easiest or best way to accomplish that task. Instead, it’s far better for you to use tried and true methods. Utilizing commercial poisons and traps along with pets are the best methods to kill mice, so they’re the ones that you’ll want to use.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Rudmer Zwerver/

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About the Author

Kyle Glatz is a writer at A-Z-Animals where his primary focus is on geography and mammals. Kyle has been writing for researching and writing about animals and numerous other topics for 10 years, and he holds a Bachelor's Degree in English and Education from Rowan University. A resident of New Jersey, Kyle enjoys reading, writing, and playing video games.

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