Pest Management - How to Get Rid of Rats in the House


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Before embarking on figuring out , you have to first be sure what you're dealing with are actually rats and not mice. There are significant differences between the two rodent types - and what may work to control or manage mice, may not necessarily work on rats. It is important to deal promptly with any rat infestation, as rats can cause a significant amount of damage to a house as well as carry and transmit disease to humans.

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Both a rat and a mouse infestation could be noticeable to homeowners from the sounds of scampering or scratching inside the walls, or from evidence like rodent droppings or urine, or chewed walls. It's easier for a professional pest control technician to identify the type of rodent.

Basic Information About Rats

  • Rats can get quite large, some as large as 1 lb in size.

  • The common Norway rat likes to dig burrows and tunnels along the edges of the building, and prefers damp areas like crawl spaces and basements.

  • Roof rats prefer attics, rafters, and (of course) roofs.

  • They can gain access to your home through a hole as small as the size of the tip of your thumb.

  • Because the two most common types of rats prefer to inhabit different areas, homes can be infested with both types at the same time.

  • Rats are excellent swimmers - they can even enter residences through broken drains or toilets.

  • They are nocturnal (active at night).

  • Rats tend to be cautious and will stay closer to their nests or dens than mice will. Rats also do not like new things in their path and will not approach them until they have a chance to get accustomed to its presence.

Tips for Getting Rid of Rats

Once it has been determined that you are dealing with rats, then there are a number of methods of getting rid of them:

  • Traps: snap traps, glue traps, or the more humane live trap. Always get a trap specifically sized for rats since those sized for mice will be too small.

  • Repellents: powdered and liquid forms are available. Great care must be taken when using any type of chemical as it may be toxic to children and pets.

  • Poisoned baits: although popular, poisoning is exceedingly inhumane... plus poison can be dangerous to humans and household pets as well.

  • Ultrasonic devices: a more humane pest control method of deterring and getting rid of rats, these devices emit sound and/or vibrations that are unpleasant rats, encouraging them to leave the area.

If there are already rats inside your home, regardless of where in the home they are, there is no choice but to find a way to get rid of them first. Humane methods can be tried first for those who wish but it should be noted that in some situations it may not be enough. Once the rats have been removed from the house, homeowners should turn their attention towards preventive pest control. Rats can very easily be a community problem and can travel from neighbor to neighbor. Taking precautions to rodent-proof your home can help prevent you from once again dealing with how to get rid of rats in the house.