||This is a serious case of rat contamination.
Customer Rat Email: Dear David,
How's it going? I hope you had a very Happy Thanksgiving!
I would love to ask you for a little of your expert advice. My Dad lives outside of Spokane in a house with lots of mice outside and occasionally some inside. I was wondering if you have any suggestions for professional help in Spokane?
Any qualifications I should look for or questions I should ask before hiring a pro? Should I wait until the house isn't covered in snow? He currently puts a few poison tabs around the inside of the house and I'm worried that my dog Mojo could get into them when he visits or a mouse might die inside his house.
Thanks so much,
My Answer: Thanksgiving was great. My whole family came to visit me.
Yes, you should wait until the snow has melted. The ONLY way to keep mice out of the house is to thoroughly inspect the whole house and find every possible point of entry, and seal it shut. It's not hard, but it takes a very careful inspection of the entire outside of the house to find any little gaps or holes that mice could use to enter the house. Steel mesh and caulk can seal up these openings. Roof vents, if not properly screened, are popular entry points.
You can't do anything about mice living outside. Live and let live.
Poison is a really bad idea - it kills a few mice, but not all. And yes, dogs do sometimes get it if it's not in a safe place (like in an attic), and yes, when mice eat it, they die in the walls and cause an odor problem. Really, the only thing to do is to seal up the openings in warmer weather. Mice come inside in the cold weather, seeking warmth and maybe even food, if they can make it to the kitchen.
If you want to hire a company, make sure you don't hire anyone that uses poison - pest control companies want to sign you up to a monthly or quarterly contract that lasts forever, so you keep paying. They don't want to actually solve the problem permanently. Hire someone who will seal the house and not use poison. The whole job should cost between $350 - $550, so beware anyone that quotes more. Or, your dad can just keep an astute eye, and do it himself.
If you need rodent control services in your hometown, click for the National Directory of
Rat Trappers that I've carefully compiled in every USA city.
There are three kinds of rodents commonly found inside buildings (in the attics, walls, and even inside the living space). They are the Roof Rat (Rattus rattus), which is also called the Black Rat, then there's the
Norway Rat (Rattus norvegicus), also known as the Brown Rat, and the House Mouse (Mus musculus). Roof Rats are more common in the south, such as Florida, where I work. The above photo is of a Roof Rat. They are very
common inside attics. The Norway Rat is more common in the northern section of the United States. The Norways are more commonly found underground, in subways and sewers and such. The House Mouse is found everywhere, but
seems more common in the north. All of these rodents thrive in urban areas and love to live in human buildings and houses. They use human garbage (and pantries) as sources of food. All of these rodents are carriers of
several diseases that can infect humans and pets. They contaminate homes and attics
with their poop and urine. Rat Contamination from droppings
can carry many diseases. The only way to permanently solve a rat problem is to find out how the rodents are gaining access to the inside of the building, and
fix those openings. Then the remaining rats inside have to be trapped and removed. If you want to learn more, please read my How To Get Rid of Rats page.
AAAnimal Control is a privately owned wildlife removal and pest control business, located in Orlando Florida. I deal strictly with wild animals such as rats. I am not an extermination company, but a critter removal
and control specialist. The above photos are some of the many that I've taken in the field over my years of work. Please email me if
you have any questions about the above photographs, or any questions about
wildlife problems or rat control issues.