Rodents are not the problem of certain people living in certain types of households, they can happen anywhere. In fact, over 21 million homes in the US have mice living in them at any given moment.
The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do to make sure your house doesn’t wind up in that group. Let’s talk about how to prevent rodents from infesting your home.
1. Prevent Rodents With Traps
You don’t have to suspect that you have rodents in your house to set up traps. If you’ve been living in your home for years and you’ve never seen a sign of a rodent, there’s no harm in setting up a few.
Just because you haven’t seen one doesn’t mean you never will, and it certainly doesn’t mean that they don’t exist in your home. Mice are sneaky creatures, and they need shelter just like humans. If they happen to cross paths with your house, you may never know you are coexisting until there’s already a problem.
The best way to prevent that problem from ever happening is to set up traps in advance. Aim for hotspot areas like under your sink or behind your refrigerator. If you check them every few days and eventually catch one, you’ll know to set up more.
2. Don’t Provide For Them
Do your best to be diligent, especially in the kitchen. Mice and rats are not very picky and they will eat most of what you feed them. Don’t leave food unattended for too long, especially overnight, and make sure you cover your trash cans.
Food that is loosely wrapped like a chocolate bar, trail mix, or a loaf of bread is easy for rodents to penetrate and get to. It’s important to store your food properly and make it a consistent habit.
Store these away in a secured plastic bin if possible, and never leave butter on the counter. Mice may be known for their love of cheese but butter is irresistible to them.
3. Fill Holes
There are plenty of holes, cracks, and gaps in almost every home, and that’s how their rodents get in. You would be surprised by how little space they need to enter your home.
If you find any holes where you think they could enter, fill it with steel wool. Mice and rats can chew through most materials but certainly not a heavy metal like steel.
4. Keep Things Off The Ground
The ground outside and the floor inside. Food should always be stored off the floor in your house but you also want to consider their habitats. It’s not as common as you would believe that mice or rats are living full-time inside your house.
Often, they live in a more naturalized habitat outside. Try to trim your heavy vegetation from the bottom, and try to keep the thick leaves at least 18 inches off the ground. Low hanging vegetation close to the home is a common habitat for rats.
Woodpiles are another common home for vermin. Invest in a structure that will allow you to stack your firewood 18 inches or more from the ground, or move your woodpile as far away from the house as possible.
If you have an old junk car, appliances, or other materials outside where they can nest, get rid of them or store them away from the house. Knowing how to identify a rat nest is important to stopping it in its tracks.
5. Use Chemicals Outside
If you have pets or children, using poison inside is incredibly dangerous to them. Use the poisons as bait several feet outside the perimeter of your home to minimize the risk of rodents spreading the toxic chemicals inside your house.
If you have outdoor cats or adventurous dogs, it’s best to avoid using poisons in general. However, if you keep them in an area where you are certain your pets won’t reach, it can be a safe alternative.
Using poison inside is also a bad idea because mice or rats may die in a place where you can’t reach them, like in your walls. There, they will simply be left to rot.
Another alternative that is also not ideal for pets is to use mothballs as a deterrent. Mice and rats can’t stand the smell of peppermint, and the strong scent provided by these in high-traffic areas or regions where you expect their activity can work wonders.
6. Let Your Pets Help
Do you have cats or dogs? If you leave them in one room at night time, this is when rodents are most active. Especially if you have cats, allow them the freedom to roam around the house in the night, as they are natural predators of mice.
While one cat is not going to handle a rodent infestation themselves, they will certainly act as a strong deterrent to any mice wishing to enter.
7. Call For Outside Help
The truth is that mouse traps aren’t always effective, and if you already have an infestation in your house, traps won’t do much to solve it.
If you have rodents trying to escape the heat of the desert sun, then you may need Tucson pest control services to help you get back on track. Once the problem is mitigated, you can use these tips to prevent it from happening again.
Maintaining a relatively clean home, following the best practices in and outside of your house, and calling for help is by far the best way to prevent rodents over the long term. Stay up to date with our latest news in pest control, take care of your rodent problems, and contact us with any questions!