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Serving the Houston Area

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Thorough Friendly Pest and Wildlife Control

Rat Control

Rat control refers to the process of identifying and eliminating a rat infestation, as well as taking measures to prevent rats from re-entering a building or property. Rats are common pests that can cause significant damage to a building’s structure and wiring, as well as posing a risk to human health by spreading diseases such as salmonella, plague and leptospirosis.

Rat Control: Step 1

The first step in rat control is to identify the type of rat that is present and understand their habits and behavior. The most common types of rats found in the US are the Norway rat (Rattus norvegicus) and the roof rat (Rattus rattus). Norway rats tend to live and nest in underground burrows, while roof rats are more likely to be found in trees, attics, and upper parts of buildings.

Rat Control Step 2: Elimination

Once the type of rat has been identified, the next step is to eliminate the existing population of rats. This can be done using a combination of methods, such as trapping, baiting, and extermination. Traps can be used to physically capture rats, and baits can be used to poison them. Extermination can be done through the use of rodenticides, although it is important to use these products with caution, as they can be harmful to other animals and the environment.

Rat Control Step 3: Exclusion

In addition to eliminating existing rats, it is important to take measures to prevent new rats from entering the building or property. This can be done by sealing off potential entry points, such as holes or gaps in walls and foundations, and by maintaining proper sanitation to reduce the availability of food and shelter for rats.

Rat Control Step 4: Monitoring and Inspection

Another key part of rat control is regular monitoring and inspection to ensure that the infestation is fully under control. This may involve setting traps or bait stations and checking them regularly, as well as conducting inspections to identify potential signs of rat activity such as droppings, gnaw marks or tracks.

Overall, it is important to hire a professional and experienced exterminator to handle rat control as they have the knowledge and equipment to safely and effectively eliminate an infestation while taking into account the health and environmental risks. It’s also important to understand that rat control is not a one-time solution but an ongoing process.

Rat Control of Rats on Counters
Dead rat in trap

Why DIY rat control may not be a good idea

Squished Rat

DIY (do-it-yourself) rat control can be ineffective and potentially dangerous for several reasons. Here are a few key reasons why it is not recommended:

  1. Identification: Identifying the type of rat and understanding their behavior and habits is crucial in order to effectively control them. Without this knowledge, it is difficult to know which type of traps, bait, or extermination method to use. Professional pest control technicians have the training and experience to identify different types of rats and choose the best methods to control them.

  2. Safety: Rats carry diseases and bacteria that can be harmful to humans, so it is important to handle them safely. Professional pest control technicians are trained to use protective gear and handle rat control in a safe and humane manner. Additionally, using certain extermination methods, such as rodenticides, can be dangerous if not handled properly, and could cause harm to non-target animals or even humans.

  3. Ineffectiveness: Rats can be hard to control and eliminate. They are very adaptable and can breed quickly. DIY methods are often not effective in completely eliminating an infestation, and rats may simply avoid the traps or bait that have been set. Professional pest control technicians have access to more effective methods and techniques to eliminate the problem.

  4. Damage to the property: Rats can cause significant damage to a building’s structure and wiring. If not handled correctly, the damage could get worse. A professional pest control technician will be able to identify potential damage and take steps to repair it, helping prevent future infestations.

In summary, DIY rat control can be dangerous, ineffective, and might not comply with the regulations. Hiring a professional pest control technician will ensure that the job is done safely, effectively and in accordance with the laws.

Rat Control Services

Good rat control services are essential to effectively eliminating an infestation, preventing future infestations, and protecting the health and safety of homeowners and their properties.  Here are the ones I offer:

  • GoodNature® A24 Rat Trap toxin free, quick kill trapping with or without rodent removal.  Safe around pets and wildlife, we handle the work, you enjoy not having rodents or poisons around.  Excellent for heavy infestations and sensitive locations.
  • Traditional trapping.  More labor intensive, but no poisons used and we handle the dead rats.
  • Rodenticide (poison) installation, management, and servicing.  Sometimes this is an acceptable option.  We only offer selected types of rodent baits that have reduced potential to harm other animals.

Frequently Asked Rat Control Questions:

  1. What are the most common types of rats? The two most common types of rats found in the United States are the Norway rat (Rattus norvegicus) and the Roof rat (Rattus rattus)

  2. How do I know if I have a rat infestation? Signs of a rat infestation include gnaw marks, droppings, tracks, burrows, and sightings of rats themselves.

  3. What are the health risks associated with rat infestations? Rats can carry diseases such as salmonella, plague, and leptospirosis that can be transmitted to humans through contact with rat feces, urine, or bites.

  4. What are the best methods to control a rat infestation? The most effective methods of controlling a rat infestation include trapping, baiting, and exclusion, along with the use of rodenticides.

  5. How can I prevent a rat infestation in the first place? Preventing a rat infestation can be done by maintaining good sanitation practices, removing potential food sources, and sealing off any potential entry points in the building or property.

  6. How do I choose a rat control professional? When choosing a rat control professional, look for a company with experience and a good reputation, as well as certification and licensing by a relevant professional organization.

  7. How do I use rat poison safely? Rat poison should only be used by a professional pest control technician and should be placed in tamper-proof bait stations to prevent accidental ingestion by children, pets or other animals.

  8. What are the risks of using rat poison? Rat poison can be harmful to non-target animals and pets, and should be handled with care. Improper use can also cause secondary poisoning.

  9. How long does it take to get rid of a rat infestation? The time it takes to get rid of a rat infestation can vary, depending on the size of the infestation and the methods used to control it. It may take several weeks to several months to fully eliminate an infestation.

  10. Is it safe to use traps instead of poison? Traps are a safer alternative to poison because they do not pose a risk to non-target animals, and are generally considered a more humane method of controlling rat populations.