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Effective Strategies to Keep Mice and Rats Away

July 25, 2023

By Rachel Maldonado

Are you tired of constantly finding mice and rats scurrying around your home, nibbling on food, and leaving their droppings everywhere?
Don’t worry – you’re definitely not alone. Rodents are a common problem that many households face.

Not only are they a nuisance – who wants to see a mouse running around at a dinner party with family and friends? – but they can also pose serious health risks.
If you’re looking for effective strategies to keep these pests away, you’ve come to the right place! In this post, we’ll be discussing some tried-and-true rodent control strategies to keep these pests away.

How to Identify Common Types of Rodents

Identifying the type of pest that’s giving you grief is the first step in getting rid of your pest problem for good.

House mice are the most common type of rodent that is found inside homes. They’re small and thin with pointed noses, round ears, and long, thin tails. They are capable of squeezing through gaps as small as a dime, which makes it easy for them to get into your home. Once they’re inside, they can cause significant damage by gnawing on wires, insulation, and anything else they can chew on.

Norway rats, also known as brown or sewer rats, are significantly larger than house mice. They have blunt noses, small ears, and short, thick tails. They’re typically brown or gray in color. Roof rats are slightly smaller and more slinder in size to Norways, are lighter in color, have a pointy nose, large ears and their tail is longer than their bodies.

Next up, we have roof rats. As the name suggests, these rats like to live high up on roofs and in attics and prefer the warmer climates of the southern United States. Though smaller than Norway rats, they’re highly adaptable and can fit through much smaller spaces. Their agility is second only to their sharp teeth and infectious bite. Roof rats tend to have a black or darker brown coat, and their tails can be longer than their entire body.

In general, rats are excellent climbers and can easily climb up walls and drainpipes to gain access into your home. These rodents are known to gnaw on anything they can find, including wiring, insulation, and walls.
These are the two most common types of rodents that make their way into homes, but certainly not the only ones. Other common rodents you might find in your home include squirrels, moles, and voles.

The good news is that the guidelines for preventing each of these types of rodent pests are more or less the same. We’ll take a closer look at what that entails below.

Why Are Rodents a Problem?

If you’re like most people, the very thought of rodents makes you uneasy. Maybe you’ve had a run-in with a pesky rat or mouse in your home, or perhaps you’ve heard stories of the destruction these animals can cause. Whatever your experience, you’re probably aware that rodents are something you don’t want to be co-habitating with. 

But why is that exactly?

For one, rodents can carry a range of diseases that are harmful to humans, including Hantavirus, Salmonella, and E. coli. These diseases are spread through contact with rat feces, urine, and saliva, which can contaminate surfaces and food. Rodents are also known to carry fleas and ticks that can transmit diseases to both people and pets.

They are also notorious for their chewing habits, and they’ll happily gnaw through almost anything in their quest for food and nesting materials. This includes electrical wires, which can cause shorts and start fires, and insulation, which can lead to energy loss and higher utility bills.

Beyond the diseases that rodents can carry, their presence can also lead to contamination of your home and the surrounding environment. As they scurry around and nest, they’ll leave behind fur, droppings, and other debris that can attract other pests and create an unpleasant odor. This can be particularly problematic for people with allergies or respiratory issues.

What is the Best Thing to Keep Mice and Rats Away?

Rodent infestations can turn into a nightmare for homeowners. Whether it’s mice or rats, these furry creatures can do significant damage to your home.

Here are some of the best rodent control strategies.

1. Seal Up Cracks, Gaps, and Other Entry Points 

Rodents can find entrance points even if they’re the smallest of gaps. Sealing cracks, gaps, and holes outdoors using copper mesh or steel wool can help keep mice and rats out of your home.

A good rule of thumb is that if you can see light coming through a crack, then a rat or mouse can definitely fit through it.

2. Tidy Up the Garden

Mice and rats thrive in overgrown gardens where there is plenty of vegetation to provide cover from predators. Tidy up your garden and make sure all ground cover such as ivy and creeping jasmine are trimmed so that rodents can’t find a place to hide.

3. Address Leaks and Other Moisture Issues

Mice and rats rely on water to survive, and moisture attracts them to your home. Inspect your home for any leaks, such as from pipes, faucets, or air conditioners exterior and interior. If you notice any water damage, address it immediately.

Make sure that your basement and crawl space are dry by using dehumidifiers and installing exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens.

4. Keep Food Covered Up

Make it a habit of storing food in airtight containers, refrigerators, or freezers. Avoid leaving food lying around, even crumbs, as they can attract mice and rats. If you have pets, do not leave their food out for long periods of time, especially overnight.

And don’t forget about the outdoor areas – make sure that any spilled birdseed, seeds, or nuts from bird feeders outside are cleaned up promptly.

5.Keep Your Space Clutter-Free

Rodents are attracted to clutter and filth. They love to hide and nest in piles of clutter, boxes, and bags.

Because of this, keeping your home clean and tidy is the first step to avoiding mice and rats infestation. 

You should also dispose of your garbage properly and make sure that you avoid leaving things like pet food or dirty dishes out in the open. 

Note that the majority of rodent infestations don’t necessarily occur in the main home itself, but in attics, basements, and garages. This is another reason why it’s so important to keep things tidy – these are out-of-sight areas that are easily prone to infestations. Remember to keep pet food stored in a sealed container (and tidy up often). 

When in Doubt, Call in the Pros

If you’ve tried all of these mouse and rat prevention methods and you’re still struggling with mice or rats, it’s time to call in the professionals. 

Here at Hawx Pest Control, we know how to identify entry points, set up traps, and seal off areas to prevent future infestations. We also have access to more effective pesticides that can be used to get rid of pests safely.

If you’re ready to leave your rodent problems behind, contact our team today. You’ll join a family of satisfied customers. 

Be vigilant in your efforts to keep pests away from your home, and you’ll notice that the results do ultimately pay off. Don’t let those pesky rodents take up residence – keep them out for good with these helpful tips!



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