Rodents are opportunists – skilled at getting inside your home, garage or business building and even into vehicles. Rats and mice carry disease and can cause major damage when they chew through wires and build their nests in carefully concealed spots in your home.
Common indicators of a rat problem include finding droppings or evidence of gnawing, rat tracks, scurrying sounds or squeaking in the walls; or even smelling a musky odor.
Controlling a rodent problem is as much about prevention as it is about treatment.
Tips to keep rats and mice out:
- Remove foliage and keep trees trimmed away from the roof of your home. Rodents nest and hide in vegetation, so clear away fallen leaves, shrubbery and vines from against your house, garage or business facility.
- Check weather stripping and sealing around doors and windows. Don’t leave an open invitation for furry intruders. Mice can squeeze themselves through an opening the size of a dime, and a rat can squeeze its body through any space it can get its head through. Seal up holes in interior and exterior walls and flooring can limit their access; so keep your place closed up tight – not only will you keep the rodents out, but you will improve your energy usage.
- Clean up the clutter and don’t leave rodents a convenient food supply. Use airtight food storage containers and heavy-duty garbage receptacles. Remove litter such as fast-food packaging and partially eaten convenience foods. Leaving an open bag of trail mix in your pantry or a partially eaten muffin in an uncovered garbage bin is an open invitation for ravenous rodents.
- Don’t allow moisture to build up. Mice are attracted to moist areas so don’t leave damp clothing or wet bath or beach towels laying around. Keeping lids on trash cans and eliminating outdoor sources of water make your property much less attractive to rodents.
Never handle a rodent with your bare hands. If you discover a dead mouse or rat, use rubber gloves and seal the carcass in a Ziploc bag to dispose of it. Mix a bleach and water solution to clean all around the area where the rodent was found. Dispose of the sponge and rubber gloves and then wash your hands thoroughly with an antibacterial soap and warm water.
Know the difference between how to catch a rat and how to kill a rat. If you choose to use live-catch traps then you will need to find a way to humanely dispose of or relocate the rodent. Lethal ways of catching rodents include traps and baits. Traps let you see results immediately, while bait often requires the rat to eat multiple doses before it dies and there is no way to know where it will be when it dies (and you definitely want to avoid dead rodents in your walls).
If you suspect rodent activity in your home and you need help to capture the perpetrator, give the qualified pest control technicians at GoPro Pest Control a call at 250-215-5243.