You may think your house is great, but the problem is that you and your family may not be the only ones who think so. You may have mice and rats lodging in your home, along with other critters like squirrels, raccoons, skunks, and even groundhogs. Different species require somewhat different tactics for elimination, but at least the professional decontamination services know which way is best for each particular species.
Infestations of mice and rats tend to be a bit more common, especially in the more urban areas. Now you may think that you don’t have this sort of problem, but you may not be right. You can’t believe they’re there only when you see them scurrying about. There are other warning signs that you must heed, which tell you that you have rodents in your home.
- Bad smell. If you have pets like dogs and cats, they’ll be able to smell the presence of rodents. These house pets can get very excited when they note the scent of strange rodents in the house. They can focus on certain specific areas, or paw and scratch on areas, which previously didn’t really interest them at all. When that happens, get a flashlight and closely examine the area for any signs of an infestation. If the infestation is huge, you may smell the bad odor yourself.
- Rodent nests. Rodents like mice and rats construct nests to make themselves feel more at home. Usually, they tend to use spare fabrics and shredded paper to make these nests, though they can also use dried plant material. If you happen to see any nests, you may have an infestation problem, especially with other signs of rats and mice in the home.
- Animal droppings. You should be on the lookout for fresh droppings, which tends to be rather moist and dark. These droppings dry out and become gray in color as time passes. If you do have an infestation, you can usually find these droppings in hidden areas, along the paths where the rodents go about, under the sinks, and particularly in cupboards. The areas near food packages are also likely locations.
- Rodent tracks. You may be able to find the pathways that rodents use in your house by using a flashlight held at an angle, though you can use a black light too if you have one. These tracks may contain droppings, as well as urine stains and footprints.
- Gnaw marks. The size of the gnaw marks tends to indicate the kind of rodent problem you have. If they’re small, then you have mice. If they’re bigger, you have a rat problem. The most recent gnaw marks tend to be rather light in color, and they turn dark as more time passes. These gnaw marks may be found on food packages as a result of attempts to get at your food.
- Sightings outside the house. Obviously, if you see one inside your home you already know that you have a problem. But if you can also see rats and mice outside your home, this may mean that the general rodent population in your area has grown. This is especially true when you can see these rodents even in the daytime.
If you find any of these signs of rodent infestation in your home, your safest option is to call for expert decontamination services. These professionals can make sure that all the animals are removed and that your entire home is decontaminated. Then they can also help in putting up preventive measures so you’re less likely to have an infestation in the future.