As a wild animal the house mouse mainly lives associated with humans, causing damage to crops and stored food.
The house mouse has been domesticated as the pet or fancy mouse, and as the laboratory mouse which is one of the most important model organisms in biology and medicine. It is by far the most commonly used genetically altered laboratory mammal.
House mice have an adult body length (nose to base of tail) of 7.5–10 cm (3.0–3.9 in) and a tail length of 5–10 cm (2.0–3.9 in). The weight is typically 10–25 g (0.4–0.9 oz). They vary in colour from white to grey, and light brown to black. They have short hair and a light belly. The ears and tail have little hair. The hind feet are short compared to Apodemus mice, only 15–19 mm (0.59–0.75 in) long; the normal gait is a run with a stride of about 4.5 cm (1.8 in), though they can jump vertically up to 45 cm (18 in). The droppings are blackish, about 3 mm (0.12 in) long, and have a strong musty smell. The voice is a high-pitched squeak.
House mice thrive under a variety of conditions: they are found in and around homes and commercial structures as well as in open fields and agricultural lands. House mice consume and contaminate food, pet food and animal feed. In addition, they often cause considerable agricultural and property damage. They also transmit disease-causing pathogens and parasites