The author firing a Kahr PM380
I can carry any gun I want to carry. However, most times, I carry a small caliber gun, what some call a “mouse gun”, in my pocket. How is that?
Stowe and go
Small caliber guns are easy to insert into a pocket holster and throw into your pocket. This takes much less time than strapping or clipping on a belt or inside the waist band holster, holstering a compact to full size pistol, and finding and donning an appropriate cover garment to conceal the piece.
Small caliber guns are small and light. Yes I know that small and light means harder to shoot; that is, more recoil and less accuracy beyond bad breath range. However, small and light equate with comfortably concealable and this makes a “mouse gun” easy to tote around all day.
The harder to shoot part is addressed through training and practice. Mouse guns are not beginners’ guns. They require good technique to shoot so that they do not malfunction and so that the little bullets go where intended. But shouldn’t you train with any gun that you are going to stake your life on?
They don’t drag me down
Mouse guns don’t drag me down. They don’t pull my pants down and don’t strain my back. Heavy side arms will do that to you–or to me specifically. When something hurts, you are less apt to do it again. I am not saying that I never carry substantial side arms concealed—I do carry my Glocks, Sigs, HKs, Kimber 1911s, etc., often. However, I do carry these substantial weapons because I enjoy carry them, and I believe that it is important to be prepared for the worst. That being said, if you are well trained and can shoot a .32 or a .380 well, and it is comfortable to carry your .32 or .380, then you are more prepared than if you are walking around with an aching back.
Carrying one or more mouse guns in your pockets can give you quiet confidence. I am not talking about “gun courage.” That is silly. I am talking about the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you have protection with you at all times and that no one but you knows it. It is better to have a little gun in your pocket that you can forget about until you need it, than to have a big gun on your hip that you are constantly adjusting, because in the latter case, you will be self conscious and you will be noticed.
Don’t worry about printing
Carrying little guns means I do not worry about printing. There are no tell-tale bulges anywhere except for my big belly and oversized waist.
Cute and pretty
“Mouse guns” to me are cute and pretty. I admit I have a thing for them. My .32 and .380 ACP Seecamp and North American Arms Guardian pistols are little jewels. My .32 and .380 ACP Kel-Tec pistols are beautiful in their own right, as is my .380 ACP Ruger LCP and .380 ACP Kahr P380.
Myths or half truths about mouse guns
There are some myths or half truths about mouse guns that need to he dispelled. These myths can kill you. Huh? What I mean is that if you take these myths or half truths too seriously, you may end up not carrying, and then if you need a gun, you just may not have one on you.
Myth #1 — If I get into a gunfight, I’m outgunned.
The last thing you want to do is get into a gunfight. If shooting erupts, you want to take cover. Unless you are on a SWAT or HRT team, you want to avoid trading bullets with bad guys. Let’s face it. If you are carrying your Glock or HK or Sig, and you are attacked by more than one armed and serious bad guy, you still may be outgunned.
Myth #2 — I will need to take out a shooter from a distance.
This is unlikely. Most lethal force confrontations occur within a bad breath range of less than nine feet.
Myth #3 – Mouse guns are not reliable.
Choose a quality weapon and take care of it. Know your weapon and how to use it, and it will take care of you.
Myth #4 – Mouse guns are too hard to shoot and practice with.
That is nonsense. The truth is that “mouse guns” are not for everyone. You need to practice with your carry guns and master shooting them. The old adage of “carried a lot but shot little” is a half truth. Again, you need to master the operation and deployment of whatever weapons you choose to carry for your personal defense. To not do so is foolish.
Myth #5 – Mouse guns come in marginal calibers.
Marginal for what I ask? Nobody wants to be shot by any gun. If you need to deploy your firearm, no bad guy is going to say something like, “Hah! Go ahead and shoot me. That’s just a mouse gun!” Some crazy psycho might say that, but (a) it is not likely, and (b) someone that crazy, just might not respond to any gun. In that case, you just might want to have a big blade.
Mouse guns I love
I love Seecamps, NAA Guardians, Kel-Tecs, Kahrs, and Rugers. They are all reliable and they all keep working like the Energizer Bunny. They are cute and pretty. They are intrinsically accurate. They are fun to shoot with. Finally, factory customer service is exemplary.
I shoot these guns at the range in two ways. One is to plink with them. The other way is to shoot them like my life depends on them at the moment. Both modes of practice build and sharpen my skills with these guns.