Norway rats often trigger a reaction of disgust in most people, and that is for good reason. They are capable of spreading dozens of diseases including salmonella and rat-bite fever. They also carry allergens which can trigger asthma attacks. On top of that, they are known to cause significant damage to the home by chewing through insulation, drywall and even electrical wires. So it’s pretty obvious that you do not want these pests around. But what causes them to enter our homes in the first place? Let’s find out.
A Norway rat will most likely enter your home because it is hungry. As all rodents, rats are always looking for food, and they are not very picky. They like to eat meat, dairy, grains, nuts, trash and pet food. This means that you can’t be too careful when sealing up potential food sources. Make sure that you do not leave any food out of storage, including pet food, and that you keep all your trash in a lidded garbage can.
Speaking of trash, it’s a main draw for Norway rats. Trash not only provides an ample food source for the rodents, it can also be a nice shelter. This propensity to live and frolic in trash is one of the things that makes rats so disease ridden, and the trash pile is where they pick up a lot of the pathogens that they then spread around the home.
Clutter and debris
Just like trash, clutter and debris provide shelter for the rats. Clutter has the advantage of providing much needed cover for when the rats need to sleep, raise their young or travel around. If you have areas of your property that are filled with clutter and debris, areas such as garages, basements, sheds, or attics, you are more at risk of having a rat infestation.
Sometimes, rats will be on the lookout for nothing more than a bit of warmth during the harsh winter months, and all they need to enter the home is an access point. These access points can be anything from cracks to holes, and they do not need to be wider than a quarter of an inch for a rat to squeeze through. Finding and sealing these entry points can prevent a lot of pest infestations.
Norway rats, unlike mice, will not be able to fulfill all of their water needs from food alone. This means that they are also on the lookout for suitable water sources. Leaky pipes, pet water bowls, or standing water in your yard are all big draws.
Removing these incentives will make your property a lot less appealing to rats. However, sometimes they may still show up. When that happens you will need the help of a pro to get the infestation under control. Contact us today if you have a rat infestation and you want to get rid of it.