How to get rid of the smell of dead mice

Updated November 21, 2016

When mice die in inaccessible areas–behind walls or in the deep depths of your vehicle–a foul smell circulates as a result. This smell is all but impossible to mask–so to remove the smell, you must find and remove the mouse. Then you can disinfect the area and deal with the remaining odour.

Locate the dead mouse. Your nose will lead you to its location. If it is located behind a wall, use a power saw to cut a hole big enough so you can reach in and (with gloves on) remove the mouse.

Create a cleaning solution to spray onto the dead mouse before removing it from your property. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln recommends making a bleach cleaning solution by mixing one-half cup household bleach with five cups of water, then placing it into an empty spray bottle. Spraying this on the mouse, and letting it soak in for approximately 10 to 15 minutes, will kill any viruses it may have been carrying.

With protective gloves on your hands, put the dead mouse into a plastic bag. Place the bag into a secure garbage can.

Clean area where the mouse was found thoroughly. If the dead mouse was found behind the wall or in an area with a hard surface, use a disinfectant to clean the area.

Spray or place an air-freshener inside the wall or in the area where the dead mouse was found. Place a self-adhesive wall patch over the hole.

Open all house or car windows to allow proper air circulation.


The University of Nebraska-Lincoln recommends disposing of the bag with the dead rodent by burning it, dropping it off at an approved waste disposal or landfill site or by burying the material at least 2 feet deep. Prevent mice from dying and emitting a foul odour in your home or vehicle by sealing off all entrance holes and using humane, live traps to capture the rodents.


Don’t spray the bleach mixture on surface areas such as carpet, as it could damage the material. Instead use liquid hand soap and water.

Things You'll Need

  • Power saw
  • Self-adhesive wall patch
  • Bleach
  • Water
  • Spray bottle
  • Protective gloves
  • Plastic bag
  • Disinfectant
  • Air-freshener
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About the Author

Brittany Tucker began a freelance writing career in 2008. She specializes in home and garden topics, and her work has appeared on a variety of websites. Tucker studied English literature at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College.