If you see a line of ants in the house, you are concerned because they can contaminate items, but you don't run out of the kitchen in fear. However, if you move a cabinet and a rat darts out running across the floor, you will jump back, shout, and jump onto a nearby chair. Something about these long-tailed rodents sends shivers down the spines of many people — especially when they get into your house.
If you have had the unsettling experience of encountering a rat in your home, you need pest control in Roseville from Neighborly Pest Management. Our family-owned and operated company opened on April Fools Day in 1978, but we are serious about removing rats from your house. Although we are a local company and not part of a nationwide chain, our tools, experience, and knowledge enable us to handle any pest control situation. Because we treat our team members like family, most of our employees have worked with us for ten years. Due to our high retention rate, the technician that comes to your house has years of pest control experience.
You likely found this article because you believe you have a rat problem and want to get them out of the house. Please keep reading to learn how to end the rat infestation in your home.
How To Identify A Rat
Different types of rats invade houses, but the two species common to Roseville are:
- Norway rats
- Roof rats
Before we get into the specifics of each species, we need to make sure you understand the difference between rats and mice.
Rats and mice are rodents. Rodents are warm-blooded furry mammals that have a pair of upper and lower constantly growing incisor teeth. The front portion has a hard enamel, and soft dentine makes up the backside; a razor-shape edge forms where these two substances meet. In the wild, rodents use their incisor teeth to chew through roots, small trees, nuts, and wood.
Although most Roseville rodents are wildlife that prefers to stay away from humans, rats and mice are commensal rodents that do not mind sharing space with us. Because rats and mice will live around humans, they use their incisor teeth to enter homes by chewing through aluminum or vinyl siding, wood, and even concrete. Inside a house, rats chew two to three-inch diameter holes in floors and walls to make pathways between food and water sources and their nests.
The problem with their large incisor teeth is they continually grow and require the animal to gnaw on available items to keep them trim. A rat's incisor teeth grow about four inches annually. If the rodent were to fail to keep the teeth short, they'd eventually impede its ability to eat, and it would starve.
In addition to their incisor teeth, rats and mice share other general characteristics like fur; however, the similarities disappear when you observe their body and tail. Rats are about twice as long and heavy as mice and have a scaly tail. Now, let's briefly discuss the features of Norway and roof rats.
Norway rats have heavier, bulkier, and slightly longer bodies when compared to roof rats. Not including the tail, a Norway rat is 7 to 9 inches long, but a roof rat's measurement is 6 to 8 inches. Norway rats have small eyes and ears, but roof rats have large eyes and ears. Both rat species have brown fur on the top side with black hairs interspersed, and both may have grey or white undersides, but roof rats may also have black coats on their bellies.
You likely will not measure a rat when it darts across the floor, and you may not notice these differences quickly enough to determine if it is a Norway or roof rat, but one other difference may help. Norway rats tend to live in the basement or ground level of Roseville homes, but roof rats are often in the attic or upper levels of the house. So, the area where you find the culprits is a good indication of the types of rats infesting your home.
Neighborly Pest Management provides rat control services in Roseville. We will remove the pests from your home so you don't have to endure more scary moments whenever you turn on the lights and walk into a room in the middle of the night.
How Rats Spread Diseases And Damage Property
Rats are omnivores that forage for food in sewers, trash bins, compost piles, and drains. As these furry animals travel in these polluted areas, bacteria and viruses stick to their oily fur. Rats are active at night, but they do not have good vision. As a result, they bump into items as they travel throughout a house and leave grease marks full of disease-causing pathogens.
Another way they spread bacteria and viruses is through urine, feces, and saliva. Norway rats deposit olive pit-sized droppings with blunt ends as they walk, while roof rats leave the rod-shaped fecal matter with pointed ends along the pathways they create between their food sources and shelters. Because rats must constantly gnaw to trim their incisor teeth, they chew on plastic and glass food containers leaving pathogen-filled saliva on them. Also, rats urinate on utensils, towels, and other items in the kitchen and bathroom.
Leptospirosis, rat-bite fever, tularemia, salmonellosis, jaundice, cowpox virus, and trichinosis are diseases rats carry and spread in Roseville homes. Furthermore, their hitchhiking buddies also transmit infections to humans and pets. Ticks, mites, fleas, and lice also live in the same areas rats forage for food. When the furry rodents eat in these locations, these insects and arachnids crawl onto the rats and catch a ride into your house. These pests spread some of the same bacterial and viral diseases as well as a host of other ones like Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and tapeworms.
In addition to health concerns, rats cause physical damage to homes. Rats chew on wood furniture, plastic and glass containers, aluminum siding, and concrete. As previously stated, rats chew holes in floors and walls to create passageways.
Rats often build homes inside wall voids, underneath insulation in the attic, inside appliances, and in other places where electrical and internet wiring exist. Due to their need to gnaw, they chew on the protective coating of the wires and eventually expose the wire. When the exposed wires touch, they create a short circuit that can destroy the electronics inside appliances resulting in expensive motherboard repairs. In worst-case scenarios, bare electrical wires contact each other and create sparks that can ignite the insulation and cause a house fire.
The best way to protect the health of your family members and house is to partner with the best rat pest control company near you, Neighborly Pest Management. Our technicians know the signs of a rat infestation and where to begin treatments.
The Safe And Effective Way To Get Rid Of Rats
When homeowners experience a rat infestation, they often purchase traps from the local hardware store. However, capturing a few rodents will not stop the ones maturing inside wall voids, in the attic, or other locations in the house. Also, if you are not careful, you may encounter a live rodent in one of the traps and put yourself at risk for scratches or bites, which can lead to an infection or disease.
The safest way to end a rat problem is to partner with Neighborly Pest Management. One of our highly-trained technicians will inspect your Roseville home for signs of rats, entry points, attractants, and hot spots. Once we determine the extent of the infestation, we will provide you with a free and accurate quote. Upon your approval, we will schedule a service and strategically install traps; we will check weekly on the devices or sooner if necessary. We will continue to do follow-up visits until the infestation ends.
In addition to capturing the rodents, we provide exclusion services to seal ground-level entry points. We also offer sanitation services to remove contaminated insulation which we replace with pest-controlling TAP insulation.
Five Easy Tips To Prevent Future Rat Problems
Once the rat control services from Neighborly Pest Management eliminate the current infestation from your house, you will want to do all you can to avoid a repeat.
These five tips will deter rats from entering your home in the future:
- Seal exterior gaps
- Prune tree branches and shrubs away from the house
- Install door sweeps underneath exterior doors
- Keep outdoor and indoor garbage containers closed
- Repair holes in window and door screens
These tips will prevent rats from entering your Roseville home. You can make your property uninviting to a wondering rat by removing standing water, fallen fruit, animal feces, and debris in the yard. You will keep rats away by depriving them of shelter, food, and water sources inside and outside your Roseville home. When a Neighborly Pest Management technician inspects and treats your home, we can provide additional tips for your location.
Contact us today to schedule a no-obligation inspection and to learn more about our residential and commercial pest control services in Roseville. When you partner with us, you will see why we are your best defense against unwanted pests.