Tag Archives: Mice

How to Keep Rodents Away From Your Home Without Using Poison

How to keep rodents away from your home

In this post, we list ways you can help keep mice and rats away from your home.

No one likes to have a mouse in the house. Even worse is if you have a rat on your property.

Rodents outdoors are one thing, but if they find a way into your home, that can be a problem.

The dangers of mice include the diseases they carry, the urine and droppings they leave everywhere they go, and chewing wires that may cause electrical fires, and many other health and safety issues.

If you can help keep them away from your property, it will make it less likely they will find their way into your home.

Continue reading for tips to help keep mice, rats, and rodents away from your home.

 

How to keep rodents away

  • Mice in House May Carry DiseaseDon’t leave your garage door open.
  • Don’t store pet for bird food in the garage.
  • Don’t leave pet food in bowls outdoors.
  • Keep your garbage in cans with secure lids.
  • Stack firewood far away from your home.
  • Remove trash piles, wood or leaf, and brush piles.
  • Don’t have landscaping too close to your home.
  • Clean up spilled pet food or bird food.
  • Pick up pet droppings in your yard.
  • Remove water sources on your property.
  • Inspect your home exterior and patch holes.
  • Keep food in containers and sweep up spilled food.
  • Keep your home clean. Piles are attractive homes to rodents.
  • Pick fruits and vegetables from your garden as soon as they are ripe.

We do NOT recommend using poisons to keep mice and rats away from your home. Using poisons often creates other unintended problems, and can often kill other animals you didn’t intend to kill.

Related: Reasons you should use rat and mice poisons

 

What attracts mice and rodents?

The things that attract mice to your property or home are the things they need to survive: food, water, and shelter. 

By working to minimize their access to what they need to survive, you’ll give them fewer reasons to try and move in.

 

Remove food sources

Try to remove food sources for rodents.

  • House Mice carry disease

    Photo by Max Pixel

    Pet food

  • Bird food
  • Unsecured garbage cans
  • Dog droppings not cleaned up
  • Food scraps and crumbs in kitchens
  • Easy access to food on counters
  • Seal your air conditioner lines
  • Fruit and vegetables rotting in garden or yard

Keeping your home and property clean and free from easily accessible food sources is the biggest thing you can do to keep mice and rats away.

A lot of their food sources come from places you might not suspect are a big problem. Keeping your kitchen clean and securing your garbage cans should be obvious, even if we can’t always clean up.

You might not realize though that leaving out pet food, especially outside can attract rodents. Letting fruit or vegetables rot in your garden or yard can attract many pests, not just rodents but also raccoons and skunks. You may not realize that rats enjoy feasting on dog droppings. This can actually be a major source of food for them.

Related: Protect your home from animals in winter

 

Don’t give them shelter to build nests

Keeping your home, garage, shed, and yard clutter-free will take away places for rodents to hide and nest.

  • Diseases in House MiceClean up piles of clothing, newspapers, scrap wood, and clutter in your home, attic, and basement.
  • Keep your lawn mowed.
  • Remove wood piles, stacks of brush and leaves if possible.
  • Keep wood piles a few inches off the ground and away from your foundation.
  • Don’t plant dense landscaping near your foundation.

 

Close rodent entry points to your home

To help keep mice out of your home, make sure you close all the common entry points where they are likely to enter. A mouse can fit through a very tiny opening, so all small holes must be filled.

  • common animal entry points in homeInspect your roof and siding for possible access points.
  • Inspect crawl spaces under the house.
  • Patch all holes with steel wool, copper mesh, or hardware cloth and then fill them with a patching compound. This will discourage rats from chewing a hole in the same location.
  • Caulk around pipes and wiring where these materials enter the home.
  • Make sure your dryer vent has a screen to stop rodents from entering through there.

Related: How do animals get into your home?

 

Attic Solutions - Call for Live Animal Removal, Dead Animal Removal, Attic RestorationFor professional mouse and rat removal in Chicagoland call Attic Solutions (847) 464-1861

Attic Solutions can provide you with humane live animal removal services in the Chicagoland suburbs. 

Satisfaction guaranteed!

 

Related sources to keep rodents away:

7 Poison-Free Ways to Rodent-Proof Your Home – The Spruce
How to Keep Rats Away – WikiHow

Are House Mice Dangerous to People

How Dangerous Are Mice to People and Homes?

In this post, we review the dangers of mice and the reasons you don’t want them in your home.

It’s pretty much a given that we don’t want mice in our homes. I’ve never met someone who had mice in there home that didn’t want to get rid of them.

But are mice dangerous? How can such a tiny little rodent hurt people?


For mouse and rat removal in Chicago area, call (847) 464-1861


Are mice dangerous to humans?

House Mice Carry Diseases

Photo by Max Pixel

A mouse isn’t dangerous to a human the same way that a predator, a grizzly bear is, or poisonous like a black widow spider. A mouse won’t attack and kill you.

 

They will, however, bring diseases into your home, create an unhealthy environment create threats that can be dangerous.

Mice can be dangerous because they can bring diseases into your home, they bring unsanitary conditions into your home that can cause illness, they can chew on wires and start fires, and they can even cause problems with allergies.

 

Dangers of mice

  • Carry diseases such as Hantavirus, Salmonella, Leptospirosis and even the Plague.
  • Mice have no bladder control and will leave a trail of urine wherever they travel.
  • Will create 50-75 droppings each day.
  • Can contaminate foods and food preparation areas with urine, droppings, and hair.
  • Cause structural damage through gnawing and nest-building.
  • Mice can chew wires and cause electrical fires.
  • A single female can produce a litter of six babies up to ten times a year.
  • Can damage electronics and machinery by chewing wires.
  • Mice droppings may cause allergy issues.
  • Mice can carry fleas, lice, mites, and ticks.

 

Diseases carried by mice

House mice can carry many diseases and transmit them to both humans and pets through their droppings and by contaminating food.

Related post: Diseases in House Mice

Dangers of mouse droppings

Mice in House May Carry DiseaseMice can transmit diseases through their droppings and urine. Because they have no bladder control, they will leave a trail of urine and feces wherever they travel. If these droppings end up in food or food preparation areas, they can cause sickness and disease.

Contaminating food

Mice are naturally drawn to areas where they can get crumbs and food. This will bring them into your kitchen, cupboards, and pantry in search of things to eat. As they search for food, their droppings will contaminate everything they come into contact with.

Related: Differences between rats and mice

Damages by nest building

Mice can chew through insulation, wallboards, cardboard, and even wood. To make a nest they may rip up newspapers, clothing or fabric. Besides destroying items in your home, they will spread their disease filled droppings in all these areas.

Chewing electrical wires

Mice, much like squirrels, will chew electrical wires because their teeth constantly grow and need to be gnawed down. It’s estimated that rodents chewing wires cause almost 10% of home electrical fires.

Related: Squirrels causing electrical fires is a serious issue

Reproduce quickly

Mouse ReproductionA single female mouse can produce as many of 10 litters in a year of up to 6 young. These 60 offspring can mate and reproduce in as little as six weeks. A mouse infestation in the home can escalate quickly.

Allergies

Many people are allergic to mouse droppings. If left for long enough in the home, mouse droppings can become airborne in the home and cause allergy issues.

Related: Reducing the risk of mice and rats in your home

Biting insects

When mice enter your home, they can bring fleas, lice, mites, and ticks with them. These biting insects can cause issues for both you and your pets.

 

If you need professional mouse and rate removal services in the Chicagoland area, please contact us online or call (847) 464-1861.

Diseases in House Mice

Diseases in House Mice

Have you seen mice in your house? These rodents are common animal invaders to homes during the fall when the weather starts getting cold.

Once mice are in the house, you have to get rid of them. Nobody wants an uninvited guest in the house that poops everywhere!

That’s a good enough reason to get rid of mice in the house. But are there others?

Related: How to Keep Mice and Rats Away From Your Home

 

Mice in House May Carry DiseaseDo mice in the house carry disease?

Yes, house mice can carry diseases. They can transmit diseases to humans and pets through droppings, bites, fleas, lice, mites, and ticks.

What diseases do mice carry?

  • Salmonella
  • Hantavirus
  • Leptospirosis
  • Rat-bite fever
  • The plague

Mice Disease Symptoms

SalmonellaSalmonella

Salmonella symptoms include gastrointestinal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea. Salmonella is most commonly spread through with mice droppings that have come in contact with food or water.

Hantavirus

Earliest symptoms of the hantavirus include chills, muscle aches, and fever. Advanced symptoms of hantavirus include a dry cough, headache, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.  Hantavirus is spread by breathing dust contaminated by the droppings or urine of an infected mouse.

Related: How to tell what kind of animal is in attic

Leptospirosis

House Mice carry disease

Photo by Max Pixel

Leptospirosis is a bacteria that is spread through mouse urine. Symptoms of leptospirosis include high fever, head and muscle aches, vomiting, diarrhea, and jaundice (yellowing of skin color).

Related: Leprostoisis disease spread by rodents

Rat bite fever

This disease is spread by the bite of a mouse or a rat. Rat bite fever can also be spread through the handling of an infected mouse or through food or water that has come in contact with a diseased mouse. The symptoms include fever, body aches, vomiting and a red rash with small bumps.

Related: Reasons why you shouldn’t use rat and mouse poison

The Plague

Nobody wants any of these, but if you end up with the plague, people are going to wonder if you’re some kind of holdout from medieval times. Symptoms depend on which type of the plague is contracted: bubonic, septicemic and pneumonic.

Early symptoms for any type of the plague are high fevers and extreme weakness. Bubonic plague symptoms also include swollen and painful lymph nodes. Septicemic plague symptoms include abdominal pain, shock, and bleeding into the skin and other organs. Pneumonic plague is characterized by respiratory failure and shock. It can be spread through handling an infected mouse or from flea bites from an infected mouse. Once contracted by a human, it can be spread from human to human.

If you need professional rodent removal services in the Chicagoland area, please contact us online or call (847) 464-1861.

How Do Animals Get Into Your Home?

How animals get into your home

As more and more animals learn to adapt to living near humans and our suburban landscapes and gardens support more wildlife, your home starts to become more of a potential target for animal invaders.

Many of us don’t mind having animals nearby and sharing our environment with them. None of us want them in our homes though. Wild animals need to be left wild, not allowed to move into our homes.

It does happen though. Bats and raccoons will move into your attic, skunks, and raccoons can move under your deck or shed, and mice can move into your basement or walls.

Beware of raccoon feces in attic

Animals in your home can create all kinds of problems, from squirrels chewing electrical wires to raccoons and bats leaving behind disease ridden feces. You can also expose you and your pets to rabies and other hazards.

Getting an animal out of your home can be done, but it is challenging, stressful and an unwanted expense. Cleaning up after an animal in your attic can be hazardous.

Your best option is to keep them out of your home in the first place.

 

Where animals enter home

  • Soffits
  • Chimneys
  • Attic exhaust opening
  • Attic & soffit vents
  • Pet doors
  • Window wells
  • Basement or foundation
  • Decks & porches
  • Roof corners
  • Roof and shingles
  • Overhanging trees
  • Holes around pipes
  • Weather stripping
  • Where to materials meet

Common points animals enter the home:

Interactive common animal entry points diagram

To prevent animals from entering your home, make sure you inspect the interior at least once a year, checking all the common entry points.

Check your home after winter to make sure the harsh weather hasn’t created a small opening for animals. Most of them don’t need much space. You should also inspect the home at the end of the summer before the cold weather hits. If you find any weak points you’ll still have time to fix them before unwanted critters are looking for places to get out of the cold.

Animals that will move into your home

  • Mice
  • Rats
  • Squirrels
  • Raccoons
  • Bats
  • Birds
  • Skunks
  • Snakes
  • Opossums
  • Wasps

Rodents are the most likely wild animal that will move into your home. Mice, rats, and squirrels account for about 75% or more of all unwanted critters in houses.

The favorite place for animals to take up residence is in your attic. It’s an inviting habitat for a wild animal because it’s low traffic, warm, dry and usually has nice out of the way places to hide.

Related: What animal is in my attic?

If you need professional animal removal services in the Chicagoland area, please contact us online or call (847) 464-1861.

The Differences Between Rats and Mice

RATS AND MICE:

If you’re not sure which pest has made it’s way into your home, take a look at our list of defining similarities and differences between rats and mice. Although they are similar in some ways, there are significant differences between their behavior, appearance, droppings, and where they may be located or causing damage in your home. Both animals are rodents and reproduce incredibly fast, up to 10 times a year, so if you suspect they may be in your home, call pest control immediately.

Wood mouseMICE:

  • Smaller 3-10 cm
  • Nocturnal
  • White, brown, or gray
  • Produces 40-80 droppings a day, smaller sized with one pointed end and one rounded end
  • Long thing, hairy tails
  • Triangular snouts
  • Long whiskers
  • Have larger eyes in proportion to their bodies
  • Live 1 year in wild, up to 6 in captivity
  • Prefer carb-loaded food like cereal, occasionally fruits and sweets
  • Do not usually burrow or dig, make nests instead
  • Cannot typically gnaw through glass and metal containers
  • Gnaw electrical wiring & cardboard boxes
  • Timid nature, not aggressive
  • May be found in nests in the walls of a home

RatRATS:

  •  Larger in body size, larger heads and feet proportionally, 16-40 cm
  • Nocturnal
  • White, gray, brown, or black depending on species
  • Produced 20-40 droppings a day, larger sized and banana shaped
  • Long tails, hairless and scaly
  • Blunt snout
  • Have smaller eyes in proportion to their bodies
  • Live about 1.5 years in wild
  • Prefer grains and meat foods
  • Burrowing behavior, can dig deep long burrows near your foundation or in your yard
  • Can gnaw through sheet metal, building materials, cinder blocks, wood, and glass
  • Greasy fur may leave marks on surfaces that they scurry across
  • Depending on species may be found in basement (Norway Rat) or attic (Roof Rats)

Reducing The Risk Of Mice And Rats In Your Home

In this post, we review the actions you should take to help reduce the risk of having mice and rats in your home. You will have a healthier and safer environment without rodents that will spread droppings and disease around your home.
Mice

House mice, which are generally active at night, are gray in color and small: usually between two to four inches long. Their nests are typically 12 to 15 inches across and made out of fibrous materials such as paper, and are loosely knit together.

Some signs you have house mice include partially nibbled food and small droppings.

Rats are larger in size than house mice (they are 12 to 16 inches from nose to tail) and are a grayish brown color with a long hairless tail.

The most common sign you have rats is droppings near food sources along with evidence of gnawing, burrows, tracks, nests and rub marks.

Related: Differences between rats and mice

 

Dangers of Rodents

It is important to control and eliminate any mice or rats in your home because they contaminate the environments in which they live through their urine, droppings, and hairs.

They also can carry a wide range of diseases, which can be passed on to humans, either by directly contaminating food with their droppings and urine or by contaminating surfaces. Rats specifically can pass on the potentially fatal Weil’s Disease, which is carried by about 15 to 30 percent of the rat population.

Related: Diseases in House Mice

In addition to the potential threat of contamination and the threat of disease, they can also cause extensive structural damage to property. Mice and rats have strong teeth and are capable of gnawing a variety of materials. According to experts, there is a significant risk of fire and electrocution as a result of mice and rodents chewing through electric cables and wiring.

 

How to prevent rats and mice

You can discourage mice from taking up residence and prevent infestations by blocking access points to your home and improving hygiene:

  • Check that doors fit tightly
  • Check that windows close tightly
  • Seal all cracks, openings, and holes
  • Inspect for access points around gas, electricity, and water pipes
  • Store food carefully with tight-fitting lids
  • Clean up any spills immediately
  • Remove garbage and other materials that can be used by mice

Related: Are mice dangerous?

RatRats can be both more difficult and more dangerous to deal with. Before you attempt to deal with a rat problem yourself, it is critical to identify where rats are living, feeding, and drinking, and the routes they take between these areas. Look out for:

  • Droppings
  • Footprints
  • Holes and burrows
  • Runs and tracks
  • Other signs such as sightings or a musky smell

You need to find out how the rats are getting into your home. Try blocking any holes you find with newspaper or similar material or similar material and returning 24 hours to see if it was disturbed.

Attic Solutions - Contact Us TodayThe trained professionals at Attic Solutions can assist you in eliminating any rat or mice problems you may be experiencing.

Contact us online or call (847) 464-1861