Can Dogs Hear Mouse Repellers?

Ultrasonic mouse repellers are devices that emit high-frequency sounds to deter mice and other rodents. The frequencies are designed to be inaudible to humans, but detectable by animals like mice and rats. However, some pet owners have concerns about whether their dogs can also hear these high-pitched sounds.

This article will examine how a dog’s hearing range compares to humans and rodents. We’ll look at the frequencies that mouse repellers emit and analyze whether they fall within a typical dog’s hearing capabilities. Understanding this is important to ensure ultrasonic repellers do not negatively impact dogs’ hearing or comfort within the home.

Dog Hearing vs Human Hearing

Dogs have a much wider hearing range compared to humans. While the average human can hear sounds between 64-23,000 Hz, dogs can detect frequencies between 67-45,000 Hz [1]. This means dogs can hear both higher and lower frequency sounds than humans can.

Humans are most sensitive to sounds between 1,000 to 4,000 Hz, but dog hearing is most sensitive between 8,000 and 20,000 Hz [2]. High frequency sounds above 20,000 Hz are called ultrasonic. Since dogs can hear frequencies up to 45,000 Hz, they can detect ultrasonic sounds that are inaudible to humans.

In summary, dogs can hear a much wider range of frequencies, especially high-pitched ultrasonic sounds that humans cannot detect. This allows them to hear things like high-frequency dog whistles, rodents moving within walls, and other high-pitched noises in their environment.

How Mouse Repellers Work

Ultrasonic mouse repellers use high-frequency sound waves to deter mice and other rodents. The core technology behind these devices is the emission of ultrasound frequencies above the range of human hearing (generally above 20,000 Hz).

According to Forbes, most ultrasonic mouse repellers operate at frequencies above 20,000 Hz, with some emitting sounds as high as 65,000 Hz. The high-pitched frequencies are unpleasant and irritating for rodents, driving them away from the area.

As explained in a study by van Wieringen et al. published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, ultrasonic rodent repellers often use varying frequency modulations, pulsed tones, and random noise patterns to increase effectiveness against rodents. The devices are designed to exploit the sensitive high-frequency hearing abilities of mice and rats.

Overall, the core technology relies on leveraging high-frequency ultrasound to overwhelm a rodent’s sensitive hearing and essentially scare or irritate them away through loud, unpleasant noise inaudible to humans.

Dog Hearing Range

Dogs have a wider range of hearing compared to humans, able to perceive higher frequency sounds that are inaudible to us. According to LSU research, dogs can generally hear frequencies between 40 Hz to 60 kHz, with significant variability between breeds. Small dog breeds like Chihuahuas and Poodles have been observed hearing tones up to 46 kHz, while larger breeds like Saint Bernards hear up to 45 kHz.

In comparison, the average human hearing range is 20 Hz to 20 kHz. So dogs can hear higher pitched sounds that humans simply cannot detect. Certain dog whistles operate at ultrasonic frequencies above 20 kHz, specifically designed to attract a dog’s attention by emitting sounds they can hear but we cannot.

A dog’s hearing ability depends not only on its breed, but also its age. Puppy hearing is most acute, and the hearing range tends to decrease as a dog gets older. Environmental factors like chronic ear infections can also negatively impact a dog’s hearing over time. But generally speaking, canine hearing is far superior to human hearing when it comes to detecting high frequency sounds.

Do Ultrasonic Frequencies Bother Dogs?

Studies show that most ultrasonic frequencies used in mouse repellers do not bother dogs. Dogs can hear sounds up to around 45-65 kHz, while most ultrasonic pest repellers operate at 25 kHz or higher [1]. This means the high-pitched frequencies are outside most dogs’ hearing ranges and do not cause them discomfort.

Some pest repellers may emit sounds up to 90 kHz, which dogs may potentially hear. However, research indicates that unless the ultrasonic sounds are extremely loud, they are unlikely to be bothersome. The frequencies have to be quite high volume to become aggravating [2].

One study exposed dogs to ultrasound frequencies up to 125 dB and found no evidence of stress or discomfort. The dogs did not indicate any behavioral or physiological reaction to the high-pitched sounds [3]. This provides reassurance that ultrasonic pest control is generally safe around pets when used as directed.

Potential Effects on Dogs

If ultrasonic mouse repellers produce sounds within a dog’s audible hearing range, these devices have the potential to cause negative effects in canines. High-frequency ultrasonic sounds can be very loud and irritating to dogs and may result in pain, discomfort or anxiety (1).

One study found that some dogs exhibited aversive behavior like growling, barking, and retreating in response to certain ultrasonic frequencies from electronic repellers (2). The sounds can be stressful and frightening to dogs if they are able to hear them.

Ultrasonic frequencies may also pose risks of short or long-term hearing damage in dogs, especially at close distances. Sounds that are too loud can injure dogs’ sensitive hearing organs. Owners should be cautious about using ultrasonic devices around pets.

Precautions for Pet Owners

While ultrasonic mouse repellers are generally considered safe for dogs, there are some precautions pet owners should take when using these devices. Here are some tips for using mouse repellers safely around dogs:

Consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns about potential hearing damage or distress in your dog from ultrasonic frequencies.

Look for products designed specifically as pet safe or pet friendly. These tend to emit frequencies and volumes less likely to bother dogs. An example is the Victor® Ultrasonic Pest Repeller, which is advertised as safe for pets.

Use repellers that allow you to adjust frequency and volume. Start at lower, less bothersome settings and increase gradually as needed.

Place repellers out of reach of pets, such as up on a shelf or ledge. This puts more distance between the device and your dog’s ears.

Monitor your dog’s behavior when first using an ultrasonic repeller. Discontinue use if you notice signs of distress like whining, pawing at ears, or avoidance of the area.

Consider pet-friendly alternatives to ultrasonic repellers such as mint oil sprays or electronic/high-tech traps. An example is Mighty Mint peppermint oil repellent.

With proper precautions, ultrasonic mouse repellers can be an effective pest control option even in pet-friendly households. But pet owners should take steps to minimize risk and discomfort to their furry companions.

Alternatives to Ultrasonic Repellers

There are several effective options for deterring mice that do not involve ultrasonic frequencies and are safe for pets.

One natural alternative is using strong scents that mice dislike, such as peppermint oil or cayenne pepper. Products like Pet Safe Mouse Repellent contain these scents and can be placed around the home. The strong smells act as a natural deterrent without bothering pets or producing ultrasonic sounds.

Another approach is blocking off any holes or entry points for mice to get into the home. This can be done by sealing cracks with caulk or steel wool and ensuring doors close tightly. Removing all food sources and keeping a clean home will also help deter mice.

For a pet-safe trapping option, humane traps can be used to catch mice and release them outdoors unharmed. These avoid poisons or chemicals and don’t rely on ultrasonic frequencies.

By using scent repellents, physical deterrents, or humane traps, mice can effectively be kept away without exposing pets to annoying or potentially harmful ultrasonic devices.


Based on the evidence presented, it’s clear that dogs can hear certain ultrasonic frequencies used in some electronic mouse and pest repellers. While humans cannot hear sounds above 20 kHz, dogs have a wider hearing range of 67-45,000 Hz. This means they can potentially detect sounds from standard 25 kHz or 30 kHz repellers.

However, the exact effects on dogs likely depend on the volume, pitch, proximity and individual sensitivity. Results may range from no response at all, to curiosity, anxiety or distress. Excessive exposure could potentially cause more serious hearing issues. As such, pet owners should use caution and monitor their dog’s reaction if using ultrasonic pest control.

The main takeaways are:

  • Dogs can hear higher frequency sounds than humans.
  • Ultrasonic pest repellers operate at 25-50 kHz, within a dog’s hearing range.
  • Effects likely vary based on the device specifics and dog’s individual hearing.
  • Owners should carefully supervise dogs around new ultrasonic repellers.
  • Alternative pest deterrents may be safer options for homes with pets.

In summary, the evidence indicates dogs can hear frequencies from some common ultrasonic mouse repellers, although the extent of effects will depend on the specific circumstances. Caution is advisable when using these devices in a home with pets.


[1] Coren, Stanley. “How Well Do Dogs and Other Animals Hear?” Psychology Today, Sussex Publishers, 29 Aug. 2012,

[2] “The Ultimate Guide to Electronic Pest Repellers.” Electronic Pest Control, Electronic Pest Control Association,

[3] Madigan, Amy. “Can Dogs Hear Ultrasonic Sounds and Whistles?” American Kennel Club, 8 Feb. 2021,

[4] Landsberg, Gary, et al. “Ultrasonic Noise.” The Effects of Ultrasonic Noise on Dogs, The Veterinary Centers of America,

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