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Do Pet Mice Hibernate? 3 Things to Consider

The reason why this is a question is because there are rodent species that tend to hibernate when it is too cold. For example, the state of hibernation is characteristic to pet hamsters. This really depends on how sensitive the rodent in question is to colder temperatures.

Pet mice, for instance, are not as sensitive to cold temperature and you are not going to see them hibernate either. At first, many people think they do when they notice the seemingly inconsistent sleeping patterns of mice.

The sleeping schedule of these nocturnal creatures can be sometimes confusing, but it is really nothing out of the ordinary. Since they sleep about 12 hours a day, you are mostly going to see them while they sleep. Unless you are up at night playing with them, of course.

What Temperature is Too Cold for Mice?

It is safe to say that if the temperature is below 64 degrees Fahrenheit, then your mouse will start to feel uncomfortable. Since your mouse is not going to hibernate when it is too cold, he is going to suffer the consequences.

The colder the temperature, the more likely that your mouse is going to have some health issues. If it is too cold, then your pet can even succumb to freezing. We recommend you to keep the temperature somewhere between 64- and 79-degrees Fahrenheit for the optimal health of your mouse.

Mice can’t adapt to low temperature so it can quickly become a serious health risk for them.

How do Wild Mice Survive in the Winter?

Winter is when mice try their best to find a warm place and gather as much food as they can. Since they are nocturnal creatures, those long nights during the winter are great for them. But this only works if they manage to find a warm place, otherwise they just freeze to death.

Companies that can help you get rid of mice have the most work during the winter. The problem is that there is no food for mice to find during the winter. It becomes increasingly appealing for them to enter your home, enjoy the warmth and find something to eat.

There, they establish a nest, bring the food near it and drink very little water in the meanwhile. You can hear them scratching the walls during the night which can be annoying.

When are Mice More Active? (Winter or Summer)

Mice invade homes not only during the winter but during summer too. It is just that it’s more likely for them to seek out households during the winter. The fact is that the high temperature during the summer can be sometimes just as bad for them as the cold during the winter.

Therefore, they start looking for colder places and many people happen to cool down their homes pretty effectively. Not to mention that they are constantly looking for food. If there happens to be some in your basement or near the kitchen, they are going to find it.

We can say that mice are more active in the winter because that is when we are able to see or hear them being active in our homes. In fact, they are active all year long. They are breeding all the time too. They are just willing to do whatever it takes to survive and the winter is harsher on them than the summer.

Why do Mice Come into Your Home?

As we mentioned above, mice don’t hibernate and they need to find a way to survive the cold temperature during the winter. As the temperature starts to become lower, it becomes increasingly important for them to find a warm place to stay at.

It is straightforward for them to look for holes and gaps where they can enter your warm place. During other seasons, they can find plenty of food outside as well and the temperature is also ideal for them. So they enter your house out of helplessness because that is their last chance.

Now we are not saying this because you should be sorry for them. It can be really annoying when mice are messing around in your house. It is best to get rid of them as soon as possible one way or another.


Since mice don’t hibernate, they have a hard time surviving the winter season. Infiltrating into people’s houses is pretty much their last resort. Since they are intelligent animals, they quickly learn that there is some warmth and maybe even food awaiting them inside.

They can do this during the summer as well when the temperature is simply too high. Mice are nocturnal creatures, so they are gathering food and exploring their territory during the night. That is when you are most likely going to hear their scratches and squeaks through the walls.

avatar I’m Peter King, writer and editor of this blog. I’m a lifelong animal advocate and volunteer at the Animal Rescue League. On this blog I help people learn about pet mice. As a responsible pet owner, you should learn about your pet’s need before getting it. If you have any question or need help, please leave your comment below.

Join the Discussion!

We have deer mice in our house ( and bats and squirrels). We will relocate the squirrels and do an exclusion for the bats but the mice…
We have trapped around 8 mice with live traps. I had seen droppings in our living space although not lately. We have only caught the mice in the basement and attic. We would like to rid our home of the mice so our children are comfortable visiting with their baby, and also prefer not to cause them to suffer. I’m told to their chance of survival in the winter is very slim and relocation may cause them the worst suffering. Please help.

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