Numerous cartoons, movies and comic books claim that mice are very fond of cheese. If you put a piece of cheese in a mousetrap, the rodent, unable to resist the treat, will run out of its hiding place and, risking its life, try to take it away.
But what happens if you put cheese in a mousetrap not in the cartoon, but in real life? Most likely, it will remain in it. Not only will the animals not be attracted to the cheese, but they will probably avoid it - because mice don't really like cheese. And some types smell so strong that sensitive mice will run away from the source of the smell, so to some extent, using cheese in mousetraps really helps get rid of mice by simply chasing them away.
David Holmes, a respected expert who has studied animal behavior for many years, stated unequivocally on the basis of his experiments that mice do not like cheese. Their main food consists of plant fruits and cereals, and most often they just don't pay attention to cheeses.
But this only applies to mice that can get their own food. If a mouse is hungry, it will eat anything it sees, no matter what it smells, as long as it can survive.
So where did the myth of mice loving cheese come from? We know that it was popular before numerous Disney cartoons. As far back as 2,000 years ago, the Roman philosopher Seneca said in one of his letters, "A mouse is a syllable; but a mouse chews cheese, therefore a syllable chews cheese."
We can assume that in ancient times people had to carefully hide all their food from the ubiquitous vermin. It was not easy for mice, who could not get to human supplies. And only cheese, which had to be kept in an open container so that it could "breathe" during cooking. It turns out that cheese was the only food available to the mice, and they had no choice but to eat the unloved product. Hence the misconception that mice love cheese.
Of course, the above explanation seems like a stretch, but there is still no general consensus on the question of mice and cheese, and the debate on this issue will continue for a long time to come.
So why does the myth that mice are crazy about cheese continue to get stronger over the years, even though experts seem to refute it time after time? It's all in the cartoons and comics: a mouse wrapped around a huge chunk of cheese looks so comical that artists simply can't refuse to use a picture that makes millions of viewers smile.