Rodent Infestations: What to Do and What to Avoid

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Are you waking up in the dead of night to the sound of rodents scurrying around your home? If so, you're not alone. Most homeowners deal with a rat or mouse problem at some point. While they may seem harmless, these furry little critters can cause a lot of damage to your home and pose multiple health risks to you and your family.

Below, we’ll discuss what you should do and avoid when dealing with a rodent problem.

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If you think you may have a rodent infestation, you should first call a pest control professional. These experts can correctly identify the type of rodents present in your home and determine the best course of action for eliminating them.

In the meantime, there are several things you can do to deter rodents from entering your home, such as:

Remove food sources.

Mice and rats are attracted to food sources, so one of the best things you can do is make sure your food is properly stored and inaccessible to them. Keep all food in airtight containers, and immediately clean up any spills or crumbs. Additionally, you should avoid leaving any pet food out overnight as this can also attract rodents.

Remove clutter from inside and outside of your home.

Clutter provides rodents with a place to hide and go undetected for a long time. Removing extra boxes and unused belongings will create a more open space that rodents will find less inviting.

Seal up any cracks or holes on your home's exterior.

Mice and rats can squeeze through some tiny spaces (as small as a quarter inch in diameter), so it's essential to ensure that your home is well-sealed. Check the inside and outside of your home for potential entry points and seal them up with caulk, steel wool, or another appropriate material.

Put screens over vents and chimneys.

Rodents are skilled climbers, enabling them to enter gaps in high places, such as chimneys and attic vents. Make sure these areas are covered with sturdy metal screens that allow airflow while deterring rodents from entering.

Eliminate problematic moisture sources.

Mice and rats are also drawn to moisture, so it's crucial to eliminate any water sources in and around your home that might be attractive to them. Repair any leaky pipes or fixtures and ensure that water drains properly inside and outside of your home. Clean up any spills right away as well.


While there are some things you can do to control a rodent infestation on your own, there are also some things you should avoid doing, as these can worsen the problem.

Don't use DIY poison baits.

Many think setting out poison baits is an effective way of dealing with a rodent problem, but this pest control method can quickly backfire. Poison baits can be hazardous to leave out. Small children or pets in the home can easily mistake the bait for food and become sick or even die from eating it. If you have no professional training in setting up the correct type of bait in a tamper-resistant bait station, you should not perform this pest control on a DIY basis.

Don't try to capture them yourself.

Trying to capture mice or rats yourself is not recommended. These creatures can carry diseases that are harmful to humans, including hantavirus, salmonella, and leptospirosis. They can also bite and scratch! Additionally, you may risk capturing other animals in a trap set up for rodents, causing unintentional harm to neighborhood pets or important animals in the ecosystem.

Don't wait too long to call an exterminator.

The longer you wait to call an exterminator, the worse the problem will get. Rodents reproduce quickly, so a small infestation can quickly turn into a large one if it's not addressed immediately. Plus, the longer you wait, the more damage the rodents will do to your home. If you think you might have a rat or mouse problem, it's best to call an exterminator right away so they can get started on solving the issue before it gets out of hand.

Contact our Charlotte mice control and rat removal experts at Sage Pest Control for a customized approach to your home’s rodent problem: (704) 413-3398.

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