Charlie Glahe WIN Broomfield

Pest prevention and treatment: Part 2


Animals living in your home can lead to a number of issues. Knowing how to prevent infestation, what signs to look out for and how to treat this issue can help alleviate some of the stress and damage caused by these critters that try to inhabit your home. 

Mouse droppings are one of the primary indicators of this pest's presence in your home. If you notice this, it is important to hire a trained exterminator and not to sweep up or vacuum any excrement. According to Orkin, mice carry a number of diseases, bacteria and viruses. Improperly cleaning up mouse droppings may release airborne particles that can be hazardous to your health. 

Anything that comes into contact with mouse droppings must be disinfected or discarded. Using an OSHA-approved respirator and gloves that do not absorb materials, you can clean up the excrement. 

To eliminate mice, either set traps yourself or enlist the help of a professional exterminator. Guard against future infestation by keeping all cracks, holes and openings sealed with cement or metal, according to Orkin. In addition, do not leave food out and store it away with tight lids and containers. 

Another vermin that can pass diseases and other health issues along to you and those living in your home is a rat. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted individuals may catch diseases like rat-bite fever by simply eating or drinking something that has been contaminated with bacteria from a rat. According to the Cuyahoga County Board of Health, chewed holes in your walls and floors and 3/4 inch droppings are two common signs that indicate rats may be living in your home. If you believe you have a rat infestation, have a pest inspection and hire an exterminator to eliminate the issue. 

Rats build nests in areas where a food and water source are both nearby. Keeping food properly stored, eliminating any standing water and ensuring all garbage is contained can help prevent rats from making your home theirs. 

The International Association of Home Inspectors emphasized these nocturnal creatures can cause a substantial health hazard. In addition, bats can be quite the nuisance. They commonly make homes in attics and are capable of squeezing through small spaces. Ensuring any cracks or holes are properly covered is essential for keeping all critters out of your beloved home. 

Rabies and histoplasmosis are some potential threats bats pose and proper removal of them is important. 

Depending on your region, there may be rules regarding bat removal. Enlist the help of a professional to ensure you are responsibly and safely eliminating this creature from your home. 

Typically, squirrels do not bother homeowners. However, Orkin noted if their population grows too quickly they may begin entering your home or inflicting damage on your property. You might have an infestation if: 

  • Squirrel droppings are present in your home 
  • Trees, plants and shrubs are chewed or damaged 
  • Holes in the siding of your home 
  • Noises from running, scratching or fighting squirrels 

If you have an abundance of squirrels that are entering your home or causing damage to your property, contact a professional to deal with this issue. Typically a professional will simply evict the squirrel causing a ruckus. Other techniques include making alterations to your home to make entrance more difficult for these critters. Replacing the roof or trimming any neighboring trees can help inhibit squirrels from invading your house. 

Wildlife control laws should be respected and obeyed and gaining insight from a professional can help ensure you do not violate any regulations. 

There are two types of snakes, according to Orkin. Venomous snakes are especially dangerous and potentially lethal depending on the breed, while nonvenomous examples are not poisonous. The CDC noted rattlesnakes, cottonmouths, coral snakes and rattlesnakes are some of the venomous snakes that can be found in the U.S. 

Typically, snakes will mate during the spring. In some instances the mother will lay eggs, and in others a live birth takes place. If you notice baby snakes or eggs, you may want to be cautious and even consider calling a professional for an opinion. 

If a snake is in your home, do not attempt to capture it or try to decipher the breed. This can be very dangerous. To avoid a snake bite, never handle a snake and steer clear of tall grass or bushes if you live in an area with a higher snake population. You should also note that snakes tend to be most active when weather warms up and during the night. 

If bitten, CDC advised that you seek medical attention immediately.

Pests and unwanted critters can be hazardous and cause damage to your home and property. It is important to adhere to wildlife regulations when dealing with animals. Call a pest control company and request help. In some instances, attempting to deal with the issue on your own can result in injuries or adverse health affects.