BLOG / PROFILE: MICE AND RATS
Categories: Common Pests, Mice and Rats
Mice and rats are extremely destructive. They have oversized front teeth for gnawing and check teeth for chewing. Rodents chew on anything and everything. But them being destructive is not the only reason why you don’t want them in your home; they are also carriers of diseases. For example the house mouse is a carrier of Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV). Headaches, fever, chills, muscle aches and meningitis can occur in people infected with LCMV. Hantavirus is of concern when dealing with the common Deer mouse found throughout Ontario and Toronto. Due to their soft cartilage rodents can squeeze through any crack or hole, and once they get inside it is awfully hard to get them out.
Why my house? Mice enter your home in search of shelter, food, and water. Mice tend to seek refuge from the outdoors when the temperature drops in the fall. They enter you home through any crack, hole, door, or crevice. They build nests in your walls, attics, or storage boxes. One pair of mice can produce up to 200 offspring in a matter of four months. If you think you have a mice problem it needs to be dealt with immediately by a licensed pest control professional.
Can I prevent an infestation? You can help prevent the infestation of mice in your home by sealing all cracks, crevices, and holes larger than the size of a pen cap. Do this by putting steel wool in the crack and sealing that with cement. If you use wood or don’t seal it with cement mice will gnaw through it and enter anyways. Keep your food and pet food in airtight sealed containers. Mice will invade your attic and walls. And after they’ve made your house their new home, it is really hard to get them out.
If I have a problem, what can I do? If you have mice living in your walls you can probably hear them gnawing and clawing, you can try and bait them with food to get them out. Mice will wait until it is dark to find food. Lure them out at night with food bait and use traps or poisons to kill them. If you have house cats, they do a good job at hunting and getting rid of any mice. In any event that these methods are not effective call a professional pest control specialist.
Why my house? Rats can enter your home through sewers and air vents, they can also get in through any holes, a rat can squeeze through hole as small as a quarter. Rats hide in attics, under concrete and decks, in walls and other hard to see or reach places.
Can I prevent an infestation? In order to help prevent the infestation of rats you should seal all possible entry points. The most common way they can enter your dwelling is by climbing trees and getting in through broken vents and screens. You should also seal all pet food, dog and bird seed is a huge incentive for rats so keeping these items in a sealed container. Human food should also be stored the same way and garbage should be disposed properly.
If I have a problem, what can I do? If you think you have a rat problem you can set a number of rat traps and poisons but rats tend to avoid unfamiliar objects. In this case it would be necessary to solicit the help of a pest control company to come in and terminate an existing rat problem.
**It is important to note the dangers of using poisons. Rat poison is toxic to humans and pets. They are meant to thin the blood, this means that any human exposed to rat poison could see signs of external bleeding, bloody urine, bloody stool and nosebleeds. If in any case this were to occur you must tell the medic what type of rat poison you were using so they can better treat you. To avoid these deadly side effects it is best to consult professional pest experts so they can treat the problem and minimize the risks involved.
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