An online based cleaning service, co-founded by Irishman Oisin Hanrahan, is using its app to offer London home owners with mice problems the chance to foster a cat for free, in order to get rid of rodent invaders.

Handy, an on-demand cleaning and DIY service, has partnered with animal charity Wood Green to offer rescue cats in need of temporary foster homes, as their very presence and scent - undetectable to the human nose - has been proven to scare away mice.

Users of Handy's app will, from today, be able to choose from a selection of cats available, and foster one for free.

Juliette Jones, animal welfare consultant at Wood Green, said: "We are delighted to make some of our cats available for app-powered fostering.

"We have over 200 cats in need of good homes, some of which will benefit from being cared for temporarily in a home environment, until they find their forever homes.

We hope that this unique service will open people's minds to the positive impact - both practical and emotional - of having a loveable feline in residence."

Each of the cats shown in the app come with images and their own "life story", and Wood Green say it is a good opportunity for them to spend time away from the rescue centre.

Pete Dowds, Handy's UK manager, said the new scheme has been created as a result of an increasing number of requests from Handy customers for cleaners to bring in cats with them in order to help scare away mice.

"From Mayfair to Mile End, Chalk Farm to Chelsea, mice are unwelcome residents in homes across the capital.

"In the past, our cleaners have been asked to bring in moggies to scare rodents, so we were delighted to take the unusual step of being able to offer 'foster-able' felines from Wood Green alongside our more typical cleaning and DIY services.

"Naturally, this is all about the cats, and we hope that Londoners will fall in love with some of the attractive mousers that come to stay: potentially turning temporary residences into permanent ones as a result."

While fostering is free to any user of the Handy app, customers are encouraged to a make a donation to the charity, or consider making the fostering a temporary adoption.

Handy's app is available to download for free on both iOS and Android.

The service is currently available in 37 locations in the US, Canada and the UK.