Those little squeakers rummaging for food might be embarrassing, but mice certainly aren’t uncommon, and Alberta Health Services doesn’t always get involved when there’s a problem.

“Sometimes it’s very difficult to keep mice out of the building, especially in a place like the Superstore — they sell everything,” Keith Petrie, owner of Cal-Rid Exterminator, said.

Petrie said mice will hang around where it’s warm, especially if there’s an abundance of food, and said any food establishment needs ways to control pests.

“Most of the commercial buildings have a really good pest control program,” he said, adding that problem places include pet stores, bio-food stores, and meat shops. “Mice will eat anything.”

Bruce Conway with Alberta Health Services said health inspections are done on a complaint basis so if there are no complaints, they don’t go in.

He said there’s no way of speculating how many infestations go unreported, but it’s incumbent upon the businesses to provide a safe consumer product.

“Suffice it to say that at this time of year especially, mice can get into cracks in walls and companies have to be vigilant,” he said, adding that “one mouse is too many.”

The Westwinds Real Canadian Superstore was shut down by Alberta Health Services Tuesday due to a mouse problem, but reopened yesterday after meeting conditions set out by health services, which included thoroughly sanitizing the store.

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