Why do Mice like Cheese?

Alex Williams
8 Min Read

We all grew up watching cartoon shows, and they always depicted the mouse as a cheese lover. Somewhere we also believed that mice do love cheese, but never thought about why do mice like cheese. Well then, today you will find out about this along with answering questions like, is cheese bad for mice, do mice really like cheese, what do mice like to eat, can pet mice eat cheese, do mice like fruit, and other facts related to rats eating cheese.

1. What are Mice and Rats?

A small mammal with a pointed snout and small round ears is the mouse popularly known as the house mouse. Various medium-sized rodents with long tails are rats, and they are different from mice based on their size. (See What type of Consumer is a Rabbit?)

2. What do Mice like to Eat?

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Mice in the wild are generally herbivores, which means they prefer to eat greens and grains. The most common things that mice like are as follows:

  • Bacon
  • Dinner Leftovers
  • Grains and Seeds
  • Nearly any Kind of Meat
  • Nuts
  • Pet Food
  • Plants
  • Sweet Fruits and Berries. (See What Do Possums Eat?)

3. Do Mice really like Cheese?

According to researchers, mice love a variety of food but despite the popular belief about cheese, this food item is not on the top three food items on their list. Cheese is somewhere towards the end of their favorite food list. (See What do Newts Eat in a Pond?)

4. Why do Mice like Cheese?

What do you think, do mice really like cheese, and can pet mice eat cheese? According to David Holmes of Manchester Metropolitan University, the mouse does not like cheese at all. The reason behind this misconception attached to them is the easy availability of cheese in the open cellars. Centuries ago, different types of cheese were stored in open cellars and thus, they were easily accessible by them. Other kinds of food like grains were properly stored and mice could not easily reach them. Also, check out 21 types of stinky cheese.

5. Is Cheese bad for Mice?

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As per the exterminators, cheese is not bad for mice, but most mice do not react to cheese. Most varieties of cheese are safe for these rodents, and they can easily consume and digest them. However, blue cheese is the exception in this case. The layer of mold on blue makes it incredibly toxic and harmful for rats.

6. Can pet Mice eat Cheese?

According to animal experts, it is not a good idea to continuously feed cheese to your pet mice. Cheese should be the last option that can be used when you run out of their favorite food. According to the advice of the people of Ethical Treatment of Animals, pet owners should abstain from feeding cheese to their little friends. Further on the topic of why do mice like cheese, remember cheese holds no nutritional value for mice, therefore it is no use to feed them cheese. You should avoid feeding any dairy products to your pet mice. (See I Found a Newt in my Garden What should I Do?)

7. What is a healthy diet for a pet Mouse?

According to the Humane Society of the United States, you should feed your pet mouse only 1 tablespoon of the mouse food or any other grain mix per day. Anything more or less than this quantity is not considered a balanced diet for the mouse. You can also give them seed mix, but commercial mouse food is considered the best and healthier option for them. (See What Dog Food Is Made Of?)

8. Do Mice like Fruit?

Besides knowing why do mice like cheese, you must be aware that berries and other fruits are among the foods that attract mice. Some mice may have a certain liking for a few fruits but mostly all of them like all varieties of fruits, like apples, bananas, berries, melons, peaches, pears, plums, oranges, etc. It is not the end of the list because they are herbivores after all. Also, check out what animal eats bananas?

9. Is it fine for Rats eating Cheese?

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Just like mice, rats also can eat cheese if offered. Also, they see it as a treat and another food item. For them, it is not something special. As per experts, rats also should not be fed excess cheese. (See Are Elephants Really Afraid of Mice?)

10. Can you give Treats to the Mice?

Every pet deserves a treat for good behavior or just like that. But is cheese bad for mice? Yes, kindly cut off cheese from the treat list for your mouse. After knowing why do mice like cheese, and what do mice like to eat, take a look at the list here and treat your mouse with these food items.

  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Blueberries
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflowers
  • Cucumbers
  • Peas
  • Zucchini.

You need to rinse and chop them into fine pieces and feed minimum quantities to them. 1 teaspoon occasionally a week will be sufficient for the animal. Excessive feeding or feeding large portions may lead to an upset stomach. (See Do Squirrels Make Good Pets? Can they be domesticated?)

11. Which food is Toxic to Mice and Rats?

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According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), chocolate, processed sugar, candies, corn, peanut butter, and cheese should be kept away from your pet mice and rats. Other than this, avoid mango and citrus fruits as they cause kidney damage, along with dried or uncooked beans because they contain toxic hemagglutinin. It is advisable for them that no matter what type of rodent pet you have you should not feed them anything which is not perfectly safe for them. You already know the answer to, do mice like fruit and some facts about rats eating cheese. Also, follow the instructions of the vet. 

So now, you have found out why do mice like cheese. You also get to know the answers to, is cheese bad for mice, do mice really like cheese, what do mice like to eat, and can pet mice eat cheese. The endless list regarding do mice like fruit does not include citrus and mangoes. Also, rats eating cheese is not completely a misconception though. Must read why are my dogs whiskers falling out?

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