Even the cleanest, finest home can experience a rodent infestation. Mice, rats, squirrels and the other 2,274 species of rodents found all over the world don’t care how nice your home is, they are only searching for three things, water, food, and harborage. If your home offers any (or all) of these, then it’s like hanging out a welcome sign for these bothersome pests.
Effective rodent control can arrest an infestation and allow you to get rid of rats and mice – or any rodents that have taken up residence in your home.
What are the signs of a rodent infestation?
You could have rats or mice and not even know it. In fact, most homeowners are not aware they have a rodent infestation unless it becomes severe. These are the signs to look for to determine if you have a rodent infestation:
- Rodent droppings in the pantry, cabinets, drawers, and other places where food is stored.
- Rodent droppings under the sink.
- Nesting material such as fabric, shopping bags, shredded paper, or dried leaves found in cabinets or isolated, hidden areas.
- Signs of chewing on plastic food containers or food packaging.
- Holes chewed through floors and walls used as access points into the house.
- Smell of urine or stale smell in cabinets, drawers, or other hidden areas.
What is preventative rodent control?
Rodent prevention is the best control. This is accomplished by restricting the rodents’ access to the things they are seeking: food, water, and harborage. The first step is to make it impossible for them to enter your home. Repairing damaged screens and outfitting exterior doors with door sweeps and installing screens on chimney openings and vents is a good start. Walk around the exterior of your home, looking for cracks and holes. A mouse can get through a hole that is just 6 to 7 millimeters while a rat only needs a 20 millimeter hole, so you need to pay attention to the small cracks and holes as well as any big ones and fill them with steel wool or caulk.
In your home, store food in containers that are airtight and preferably acrylic or glass. Plastic containers and bins are no problem for hungry rodents. They will chew right through. You should also make sure that you pick up pet food and water every night and store all pet food in an airtight container.
Outside, do not allow plants or shrubs to grow up against your house. If you have firewood, store it 20 feet or more away from the house. Trim shrubbery regularly and keep flower beds weeded and neat.
What are the health impacts of rodent infestation?
Rodents can transmit a number of diseases to humans, both directly and indirectly. Some of these diseases can be deadly. They can cause hantavirus, hemorrhagic fever, leptospirosis, and plague as well as a number of other diseases. Indirectly, they can cause Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever among other diseases. In short, having rodents in your home can make you very sick.
There are rodents in my home! What should I do?
If you suspect you have rodents in your home, don’t wait until the infestation gets out of hand. Call the Virginia rodent control pros at RichPro Pest Management. As part of getting rid of rodents in your home, they will inspect your home, inside and out to identify entry points and advise you on how to seal them. It’s YOUR home, take it back. Call today to schedule your appointment.