Rats are a difficult and unfortunately common pest problem for property owners in Modesto, and this is in part because of their dependent relationship with humans. Rats have adapted over hundreds of years to live alongside humans as we inadvertently provide food, water, and shelter for them, and this is why they are such a widespread pest problem.
While finding rats around your Modesto, California home or business is unsettling, you might not realize just how dangerous these rodents are. These pests pose numerous health and safety risks to humans they cohabitate with, so it’s important to know how to identify rats when they are in the area as well as how to prevent them from getting into your home.
Rats In Modesto
There are two main rat species in the area: the Norway rat and the roof rat. While these two species look and act in many similar ways, there are some important differences between them.
To start with, the Norway rat is a brownish-grey species that has a longer tail. Norway rats are great swimmers, but they usually live near ground level as they can’t climb very well. On the other hand, roof rats are great climbers who usually live on upper levels, attics, or roofs. They are dark brown to black in color and have shorter tails in proportion to their bodies.
Why Rats Are Worse Than You Think
Rats are known for being unsanitary, but they are actually able to cause more health and safety risks than most people know. For one thing, they constantly gnaw on all kinds of materials, including electrical wires and plumbing, which can lead to safety issues. But, the worst thing about having rats around your Modesto property is that they can cause the following health problems:
- They are able to spread numerous diseases including hantavirus and salmonella.
Rats also carry parasites such as fleas, and these parasites can spread other illnesses.
Their fur, droppings, and urine can cause allergic reactions and asthma attacks.
The build-up of rat feces can lead to other respiratory issues.
Five Ways To Prevent Rats
Once they invade a property, rats can be particularly difficult to remove, so the best way to protect yourself and others from these disease-filled pests is through focusing on prevention. The overall most effective way to deter rats is to take steps to reduce and eliminate factors that attract them to a property.
Here are five of the best ways to remove underlying factors that bring rats to an area:
- As rats are often in search of food sources, clean up kitchen areas with a focus on wiping up crumbs and spills, washing dirty dishes often, and sweeping and mopping regularly.
- The trash in and around your property can also attract rats. Always remove trash from your yard, take out the garbage regularly, and get tightly-fitted lids for all garbage cans.
- Keep any pet food stored inside and in an airtight container.
- Seal up any cracks or crevices that are as big as a quarter using a combination of steel wool, wire mesh, and caulk so that rats can’t chew through the materials.
- As rats and other rodents prefer humid environments, make sure to fix any broken or leaky pipes and faucets.
Why DIY Rat Removal Doesn’t Work
While some property owners try to get rid of rat infestations on their own, this isn’t advisable. Rats are a prolific species that can hide in many difficult to see areas, so it is often nearly impossible to get rid of the entire infestation on your own. Plus, some rat removal methods such as bait can be dangerous, especially for pets and young children.
The safest and most reliable way to both prevent and remove rats is to contact the experts at Insect IQ, Inc. We are focused on providing customizable service plans and even same-day services in many cases. To find out more about our residential and commercial rodent control services, give us a call today at (209) 353-9073.