Dealing with any kind of infestation is a tough challenge, but dealing with rodents is especially hard because of their reproductive rates. A female rat can typically have up to six litters per year, with each litter containing up to twelve rats. Since they reach sexual maturity after only nine weeks, a single pair of rats (male and female) can create a colony of up to 1300 rats per year. These numbers tend to grow exponentially, so it’s safe to assume that a single pair can be responsible for thousands of rats that will undoubtedly cause serious issues to any household.
It is essential to deal with a rat problem as soon as you notice the first signs of an infestation because if you postpone an intervention, the issue will persist until your entire household ends up being overrun by rats. If you’re struggling to fight against rodents and aren’t sure how to deal with rats properly, take a moment to check out some of the tips we’ve covered in this article, and you should get a better idea of how to put an end to an infestation before it escalates.
How to Prevent Rat Infestation
The main thing you should focus on is to deprive rats of food and shelter. Here are some tips you should keep in mind:
Denying Rats Water and Food
One of the most significant issues with rodents, in general, is that they can eat almost anything to survive. This is a major problem because it makes it extremely hard to deprive them of food sources. However, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to minimize food availability and thus the risk of having to deal with a rat infestation in house.
For instance, if you live in Arizona, chances are you have some citrus trees in your yard or in the vicinity of your house. Rats love fruit due to its high nutritious value, and they usually eat fallen citrus. Picking up fallen citrus in your yard will remove a valuable food source and thus the number of rodents around your house. If you have pets, it is crucial to remove pet food right when your pets are done eating. If you leave it outside, chances are it’s going to be eaten by rats, and more importantly – they will keep coming back for more. One thing you don’t want to do is provide them with a sense of security and make them keep coming back in increasing numbers.
Denying Them Shelter
Rats are also notorious for being able to find shelter in almost any place as long as there’s an entrance. As the name suggests, roof rats love seeking refuge in your attic, and before you know it, they will establish a massive colony that is going to be hard to eradicate. So, how to get rid of rood rats in Phoenix? The first step is to cut any overhanging branches that can be used as a connection between your yard and attic. You can also seal any holes that might be used as an entrance to your attic. Storage sheds, bushes, piled lumber, and any other quiet backyard space is a potential shelter for rats, so make sure to clean up your sheds and avoid keeping your stuff in large piles.
Seal the Entrance Points
One of the most effective ways of blocking pests is to seal the potential entrance points in walls, doors, and windows. While you could do this on your own, it’s always a good idea to hire a crew of professionals and let them deal with the issue. They have the necessary experience and equipment to seal cracks and holes properly. On the other hand, if you have the necessary tools and equipment, you could try doing it yourself, but make sure to double-check everything before calling it quits.
Rat in the House What Should I Do?
Now that we’ve covered prevention methods, it’s time to focus on how to deal with an ongoing infestation.
Take Out the Trash and Clean Your Home
As we’ve mentioned, rats will not hesitate to go through your trash in search of food. The best way to avoid such scenarios is to simply take out the trash as often as you can, preferably every day. Since rats are nocturnal animals, you will rarely see them during the day, but they will come out at night and ravage your kitchen without hesitation.
As long as you keep your house clutter-free and relatively clean, it should significantly lower the potential for an indoor infestation that could quickly get out of control in a matter of days.
Hire a Team of Professionals
No matter how severe the infestation is, it’s typically hard to DIY your way out of the predicament. DIY pest control strategies are rarely effective, and even if you start seeing some results, chances are the rats will come back sooner rather than later. By hiring a team of professionals, you will significantly increase the chances for complete eradication, which is usually what you should be aiming for in the first place. More importantly, professionals have the necessary means to fight against a severe infestation instead of using common poisons that tend to cause more harm than good.
Use Mouse Traps
Mousetraps are a useful but temporary solution. It’s easy to set up a couple of mouse traps throughout your house, or even a couple dozen, but they aren’t as effective as one might think. If you’re dealing with a severe infestation, killing a couple of dozen rats won’t solve your problems. On the other hand, you should do whatever you can, so setting up a bunch of traps isn’t a bad idea by any means.
What You Shouldn’t Do
Here are a couple of things you should avoid doing;
Don’t Adopt a Cat to Fight Against an Infestation
Cats are great hunters, and they can help you fight against an infestation, but rats are known for being carriers of nasty diseases that could consequently jeopardize your pet’s wellbeing. Furthermore, cats can only do so much, and they aren’t too effective against rats that are usually hidden behind walls. Also, rats tend to nest behind walls, so having a cat will not solve that particular issue.
Avoid Using Poison
Using rat poison is an easy and quick way of getting rid of rats, but it comes with a couple of downsides. Since the effects aren’t immediate, you risk having dead rats hidden deep inside your walls, rotting for days, if not weeks. As you can imagine, the smell would be terrible, and it’s simply not worth the risk.
If you’d like to read more about effective methods of dealing with various pests, please read our other articles. In case you’re dealing with an ongoing infestation, take a moment to check some of the services we offer, and don’t hesitate to call us and schedule an inspection.