When my youngest son was about six years old, the mouse that lived in the basement started coming up to the kitchen to raid our cracker and cereal supplies. Freddy watched as I set two traps in the kitchen. “Will that trap kill him?” he asked.

“You bet. It’ll snap his neck.”

“Can’t we get a trap that’ll catch him alive and then we can let him go in the fields?”

“They make that kind of trap, but it’s for squirrels and raccoons.” I looked at him. He was only six and kind, generous thoughts were already cropping up in his mind. I didn’t want to stifle that.

“I think I can make a trap that’ll capture him,” said Freddy.

“Good. Let’s go!” I helped him construct an Elmer Fudd box trap, but to make sure, I constructed a large Sumatran Tiger pit using a plastic garbage can and a crosswalk made of tissue paper leading to the bait. From past experience I knew what attracted mice.

I slept uneasily. In the morning we checked the traps in the kitchen. Success! Freddy’s trap had been sprung, and the box moved! We took care of things and the mouse was released in the woods.

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