7 Rodent Proofing Tips to Keep Rats, Mice, and Other Pests Away
It’s easy for rodents to turn into a full-blown infestation. Some species can produce around 2,000 offspring in a single year. Rodents also reach adulthood rather quickly, with some species ready to start reproducing by the time they’re three months old.
This is why rodent proofing is crucial for residential areas and restaurants. There are plenty of horror stories of establishments shutting down due to rodent infestations.
In this article, we’ll take a look at seven different ways you can go about rodent-proofing your place.
1. Fill Any Cracks, Gaps, and Holes in Your Home
Rodents have a flexible skeletal structure, meaning that they can squeeze into seemingly impossibly tiny openings.
Check your home’s walls and doors for any openings the size of a quarter or larger. If you find any, fill them in with caulk, cement, plaster, or any other hard material.
If your windows have cracks along the edges, you can use weatherstripping to fill in the openings.
It’s also important to be sure not to leave any doors or windows cracked open. While it’s nice to open a window at night during the spring season to let in the fresh air, it also provides an entry point for rodents.
If you have a garage that’s attached to your home, be sure to keep both the garage door and any side doors closed at all times. Rodents search for safe havens to hide in and sleep. A garage filled with clutter will provide a rodent with what amounts to a dream home.
2. Keep Trash Stored Away From Your Home or Sealed in Closed Containers
If you have any garbage bins stored alongside your home, move them further away. Or, if that’s not an option, make sure they stay sealed.
Garbage attracts rodents and other pests. Once rodents begin flocking to your trash, it’s not long before they’ll notice the warmth and smell of food wafting from inside your home.
You may also find yourself fighting off other pests as well, such as raccoons, if you leave your trash out and easy for wildlife to get into.
3. Move Pet Food Into Airtight Storage Containers
Rodents love cat and dog food. After you bring home pet food, transfer the contents over into a sealed plastic container. Rodents are able to chew through the paper bags that most store-bought dry pet food comes in.
Also, if your pet has any leftover food in their bowl, empty it out before you go to bed. Rodents are most active at night and will be drawn to the easy food source.
4. Keep Your Home Clean
You may not think those crumbs under the kitchen table are a big deal, but it’ll be a siren’s call to rodents.
Make sure to wash all the dishes after every meal. Clean off countertops and don’t leave any open food lying around. Sweep up crumbs at once and dispose of them in the trash.
Proper housekeeping will go a long way in helping to prevent rodents from being drawn to your home.
5. Store Dry Foods and Cereal in Sealed Containers
As with pet food, rodents love devouring dried food goods like flour, sugar, and cereal. The paper containers and cartons these goods come in are all too easy for rodents to chew through in a single night.
Once you bring these items home, transfer the contents into a sealed metal or plastic container that will be airtight. Then place these containers onto high shelves or in the refrigerator.
If rodents can’t smell or see any food sources, they’ll be less likely to intrude upon your home.
6. Keep Your Garden and Shrubs Pruned Back
Rodents look for dark shelters to hide in. A thick shrub or garden provides the perfect hiding spot for rodents.
Make sure your garden and shrubs don’t grow right against the foundation of your home. This will provide further incentive for them to search for a way into your home.
Also, if you have any trees growing near your house, make sure no branches touch the side of your home or your roof. This gives rodents a highway of sorts to travel up the tree and gain easy access to your house.
7. Contact a Professional Exterminator
If you know your area is dealing with rodents, you may want to be proactive and call an exterminator.
An expert will be able to assess your home and determine whether you already have an infestation or not. In most cases, an exterminator can also go ahead and treat your home to help prevent an infestation from even occurring in the first place. This is your best bet at rodent control.
Why Are Rodent Infestations Bad?
While it’s true that many people own pet rats, these are a domesticated variety of rodent and are far cleaner than their wild counterparts. Wild rodents can contaminate food and are carriers of disease.
One of the more dangerous diseases that rats can carry is Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome. This illness is caused by the hantavirus and is brought on by exposure to droppings or urine of infected rodents. About one-third of reported cases of the illness results in a fatality.
Rodents are also known to spread salmonella. The bacteria are spread in their feces and from when they walk across food and surfaces like your kitchen counter.
Don’t Put Off Rodent-Proofing
Even if you have followed all the advice for rodent-proofing your home, sometimes infestations can still happen. Rodents are persistent, and their populations are numerous and successful for a reason.
The fall and winter season is when you should be most on guard for these pests. If you begin to notice signs of rodent activity, such as chew marks on food containers or droppings, then it’s time to call in a professional exterminator.
Contact us today to have all your pest problems taken care of fast!