Iowa bar’s mouse racing a public health threat

Sheriffs are fighting their way through the seedy underbelly of Danville, Iowa, taking aim at unregulated gambling in its most adorable form — mouse racing.

Officers raided the Bucktail Lodge last week in search of code violations and shut down the popular races.

The sleepy country bar was also cited for several health violations from the on-site rodents, old food and trash in the building’s basement. The owners said those citations were absurd too.

"Nobody gets beyond the pool table over there, even if they’re drinking a beer, so if a mouse can jump out of there (race track) go run and drop a turd in his beer he’s doing something," said Scott Beach, owner of the Bucktail Lodge.

When the mice aren’t competing, they are adored as pets in the family’s apartment above the bar.

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About Douglas Powell

A former professor of food safety and the publisher of, Powell is passionate about food, has five daughters, and is an OK goaltender in pickup hockey. Download Doug’s CV here. Dr. Douglas Powell editor, retired professor, food safety 3/289 Annerley Rd Annerley, Queensland 4103 61478222221 I am based in Brisbane, Australia, 15 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time