Mouse droppings are frequently mistaken for cockroach droppings, but mouse droppings can cause disease in humans if handled improperly. Mouse droppings are usually about ¼ of an inch in length and black or dark brown. A number of droppings in an area will indicate that mouse activity is present there.
Disposing of mouse droppings can be dangerous. Their feces, along with their urine and saliva, carry harmful diseases. Hantavirus is one commonly-know disease spread by infected mice through their urine, feces and saliva. It can be breathed in through the dust that is in the air from the dried waste, as well.
Children and pets are susceptible to these diseases also. If you encounter mouse droppings, dispose of them quickly. First, spray the area with a disinfectant. Using rubber gloves and a tightly fitting facemask, wipe up the droppings with a damp cloth, so as not to create dust. After the waste is removed, scrub the area with an anti-bacterial cleanser. Ventilate the area as well, to circulate fresh air and remove any remaining odors. Dispose of the waste in a sealed trashcan and also dispose of the gloves, mask and the clothing you wore in the clean up.
Never vacuum or sweep up mouse droppings. This creates dust that can spread throughout the house. Pets and humans subsequently breathe in the dust, and inhalation is one of the main transmitters of a number of deadly diseases attributed to mouse waste.
If you find mouse droppings or evidence of mice in or near any food items or pantry items, discard the entire bag or container of food. Mice can contaminate food without leaving much evidence. To prevent this, keep pantry items sealed in airtight containers and remove any vegetable waste or trash from your kitchen promptly.