The Game of Cat and Mouse: Sure Signs You Have a Rat Infestation on Your Property

When things go “bump” in the night, it might not be a scary ghost. But a scary ghost is better than the alternative: a rat infestation. And if you think there’s no possible way for a rat to enter your property, then think again.

If there’s a hole or gap in your property that’s at least the size of a quarter, then an adult-sized rat can get in. And what’s scarier than a rat? The fact that they often carry diseases and parasites.

To protect your property and the people inside of it, you need to be on the lookout for signs of rats. There are a few signs that are a dead giveaway. So keep reading to learn how to tell if you have rats!

Rat Droppings

Rat droppings are a for sure sign of rat activity. And if you’re finding quite a bit of them, then there’s a good chance that you have a rat infestation. When you find rat droppings, you’ll want to know if they’re old or fresh.

Fresh droppings will be dark brown and moist. Older droppings will be a faded brown and appear to be dried out. Look for droppings in the kitchen in your cabinets, pantry, behind your refrigerator, and under the sink.

Any place that is hidden and dark is a good place to look. If you find a large amount in one area, then this is a sign that there’s a nest nearby. So keep investigating and see if you can find it.

Strange Noises

A rat infestation will have you wishing a ghost was to blame for the noises in the night. If you’re hearing scratching or scurrying noises inside the walls or in the ceiling, then put down your ghost tracker and pick up your flashlight. Rats are nocturnal animals and are most active at night.

But don’t only rely on the dark for opportunities to hear the rats. They can be heard during the day as well if you listen closely. A grinding noise may also be heard from these intruders as they grind their teeth.

Strong Odor

Pew! Have you been smelling a strong unpleasant odor on your property? Rats might be the culprits.

If there’s a stale smell in hidden areas, dark spaces, or corners, then the rats may be urinating in those spots. Rat urine has a strong odor. And if you have an infestation, then you’re most likely going to smell it.

The smell is very musky and will travel throughout the property. Rats alone give off smelly odors. And when they are close to dying, they will find an abandoned nook and die alone.

The smell of a decaying rat is considerably unpleasant as well and may cause allergies or other reactions. So get your sniffers out and see what you can smell.

Unusual Pet Behavior

If your nose isn’t the best at finding smelly rodents, then don’t worry. Any pets on the property will give you a couple of clues that there are rats. Because of all the stinky smells that rats leave behind, pets pick up on rat infestations pretty quickly.

If your cat or dog begins to act unusual in certain areas of the house or property, then they might be detecting rat activity. And they might bark, meow, and claw or paw at areas where rats may be hiding. So don’t ignore your pet’s abnormal behavior.

Instead, grab your flashlight and help them investigate. Pets are a great help to get rid of rats.

Gnawed-On Items

Rats and rodents of all kinds love to gnaw on just about anything that they can get their paws on. They chew up papers, cardboard, and other materials that they see fit for nest building. They also gnaw on items in your cupboards, cabinets, and pantries to nibble their way to a tasty meal.

New gnaw marks will appear light, and as they become older, they will darken. Keep this in mind when trying to determine if the infestation is active. And don’t forget to check out the size of the gnaw marks.

Mice teeth are small, while rat teeth are larger.

Grease Marks

The fur on rats carries grease and oils. And when the rats run up against the walls or cabinetry, they leave behind a greasy residue. Areas, where rat activity is most common, will have a substantial amount of grease.

If you touch the grease marks and they smear, then you know that the infestation is active. If you’re not exactly sure if oil marks on your walls are sure signs of rats, then try placing baby powder or flour on the area in question. If rats are running and traveling through this area, then they’ll leave tiny footprints in the flour and baby powder.

Footprints are an undeniable sign of rats.

Rat-Sized Holes

Signs of rats in the yard are the grease marks along the exterior of the property and holes leading to burrows under the house, shed, garages, or decks. They like to be near garbage cans and trash. So check around these areas for rat droppings, odors, and gnawed marks.

If you find signs of rats on the outside of your property, then you’ll want to do a serious investigation on the inside as well. Consider bringing your cat or dog outside to sniff around for you. As mentioned earlier, your pets will pick up on the rodent smells quickly.

Put a Stop to Your Rat Infestation

Stop your rat infestation today by looking for these rat signs. Anyone or anything staying on your property, eating your food, and causing havoc without paying rent is owed an eviction notice. So serve your intruders today by knowing exactly what to look for.

And if you loved reading about ways track down home intruders, then you’ll also enjoy reading about 7 spatial tricks to make a room seem bigger than it is! Find out more here.

A Clean and Tidy Home is Good for Your Health

We are all taught as children the basics of good hygiene, like washing our hands before eating and after visiting the bathroom, and as we get older, we learn about other hygiene essentials like keeping food safe for consumption and keeping away from germs and viruses. When you move into your own home, you have to find your own ways of keeping everything clean and neat. That can sometimes prove to be a challenge, what with busy working lives, families, and other commitments, plus the tiredness that comes with a stressful workload.

A healthy home is tidy as well as clean

Your home should be your happy place, where you feel safe and secure even when things are tough outside. If you’re coming home to mountains of dirty dishes, mounds of laundry and piles of unsorted mail, you’re not going to be feeling very cheery at the sight of all these jobs that need doing. This can lead to feeling overwhelmed and unhappy, and rather than your home being a place to relax and enjoy yourself, it becomes a source of dread. You then become locked in a cycle of feeling too tired to sort things out and then feeling even more depressed because you can’t get on top of things.

Tackling the problem

Unless you live alone, you should be able to rely on the other members of your family to do their bit to help, and if they aren’t pulling their weight, they need to be reminded of their responsibilities. One way of dealing with your backlog is to allocate an hour a night to one job that needs doing, working your way slowly but methodically through the tasks. This is better than trying to get a specific job done because you could run out of time, or push yourself too hard and end up feeling as though you’ve failed. Taking some time off work to catch up and clear out can be a cathartic experience, and if you are able to get stuck in you can feel the weight of the burden lifting as you clear up. It may not sound like an enjoyable way to spend your leisure time, but you will be improving the quality of your life and your happiness, so it’s worth considering. If the task is too large to tackle, or you are experiencing health problems that prevent you from completing the work yourself, you could draft in a professional cleaning company for a hoarding cleanup.

There are very few people who haven’t found themselves struggling to find the time and energy to keep their house as up together as they would like, and it can be a constant battle when you feel weary. The more the mess builds up, the harder it seems to tackle, and you can end up chasing your tail just to keep things ticking over. What you might not have realized is that living in an untidy home could be contributing to your stress and accompanying lack of energy. Finding a way to create order from the chaos is an important part of returning your home to the happy place it needs to be.