A lot of homeowners get nervous and skittish when they find out that mice—or worse yet rats—have made their way into the home.
But that’s actually a reasonable reaction to have, because a rodent infestation in any Sunnyvale home isn’t just inconvenient, it can carry with it a significant health risk. Rodents like rats and mice can transmit everything from rabies to hanta virus to even bubonic plague, which is still diagnosed in 21st century America a few times every year!
If you want to keep your Sunnyvale home and the people in it safe, you need to take measures to protect your home from a possible rodent invasion. And if they do somehow get through, be prepared to take the actions necessary to remove them from the home and regain a safer, healthier environment.
Seal Your Exterior
The first and most important thing you can do for your household is ensure that the exterior of your home has no vulnerabilities. A mouse is flexible enough to squeeze its entire body through a hole the size of a dime, while small rats can do the same thing with a hole the size of a quarter!
Take the time to inspect the outside of your home. Look for cracks in the foundation, holes in your siding, breaks in window frames, any place where there’s a structural defect. These flaws in your exterior hurt your home in two ways. They reduce your insulation efficiency, meaning higher heating/cooling bills, and they also provide a point of entry for rodents. Find these weak points and properly seal them.
Don’t Flush Or Send Food Down The Drain
It may seem like an urban myth, but unfortunately, there’s nothing mythic about it; rats can and do swim up drainage pipes and enter homes through a toilet. While that sounds like something out of a horror movie, this isn’t some random action taken by possessed demon rats just to scare homeowners. Rats do everything for a reason.
If a rat has resorted to swimming up a drainage pipe and exiting into a home, that’s because it’s decided that home has provided a potential shelter and a regular source of food, and it got its proof from your drainage pipe itself. If you’ve been regularly disposing of food through your sink, you’re providing a free meal to any rats living in the sewers near your home. Continuing to do so will encourage those rats to try to find the source, so they’ll travel up the sewage pipe, to your home, trying to find the source of the food.
Check For Evidence
If you suspect that you have rodents in your home, start investigating to a) get confirmation that you’re right, and b) confirm exactly what kind of rodent is in the house. Look for evidence that you really do have rodents, such as rodent droppings, or listen for the noise of them moving around; they may be using your air ducts to travel throughout the home, or between the walls of rooms.
The exact type of rodent is also important. If you have rats, but lay out mouse traps, the size of the trap may not be appropriate to the rodent you’re trying to trap. Use the right tool for the right situation. A one-size-fits-all approach is not going to work well here.
Don’t Touch Anything Without Protection
Everything about a rodent can potentially be virulent and contagious. Rodent urine, rodent droppings, rodent particles such as fur, dander and even the fleas that leave a rodent can all carry diseases. This is why it’s important to, under no circumstances, make physical contact with rodent remains without protection like gloves. Even breathing in particles can be dangerous, so while handling or cleaning rodent remains, wear gloves and a mask, if possible.
If you do find rodents in your home call your Sunnyvale pest control company at 408-922-9898