Dangerous Droppings: Rat and Mouse Poop in the Home

A mouse trapped in a corner looking up at the camera

Rat and mouse poop, from a distance, they can look like tracks of dirt. It’s upon closer inspection that you can determine whether or not it’s evidence of a rodent infestation. It’s not pleasant to have any kind of animal leavings in your home – but act carefully. You can’t sweep up rodent droppings like you would other forms of poop. It might look easy, but it’s actually a health hazard. At Garrie Pest Control we’re experts on rodent control in the Lower Hudson Valley, and if you have evidence of a rodent infestation, we can help. Before that happens, though, you may want to know for certain if the droppings in your home are mouse or rat poop. We can tell you the indicators, how to clean their mess safely, and what our expert exterminators can do to help.

What Does Rodent Poop Look Like?

Though they’re both considered rodents, rats and mice are very different creatures with different habits. Mice are tidy poopers that tend to designate a particular space outside the nest to serve as their toilet. This might look like your silverware drawer, or in the space behind where you store your food. Mouse droppings are small and brown – similar to cockroach poop, only pointed at either end like a grain of rice. Rats, on the other hand, drop much larger pellets shaped like a grape or coffee bean. They are sometimes mistaken for squirrel poop, only squirrel poop is rounded and will lighten over time. And while mice will pick a place to defecate in, rats will spread their waste everywhere they go.

Whether mouse or rat, rodent droppings are unpleasant and frustrating to come across. But before you reach for the broom or vacuum, stop and breathe a second. There’s a better way to clean it up.

How to Clean Mouse and Rat Poop

Most feces carry some kind of illness-causing bacteria, and rat and mouse droppings are no exception. One of the most dangerous possibilities that can come from exposure to rodent droppings is the threat of Hantavirus. Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome is a respiratory disease that is transferred from rodents to humans and which has a fatality rate of 38%. At first symptoms present like the flu or a bad cold, with a fever and fatigue, but if left untreated it could result in your lungs filling with fluid. Not all rodent droppings are infected. If they are, though, and you disturb them with a broom or vacuum cleaner, you’ll be sending virus particles into the air. So, what should you do instead?

First, you’ll need protective gear, mainly eye goggles, a face mask and plastic or rubber gloves. Spray the area, droppings and urine, with bleach or a disinfectant and allow it to soak for five minutes. Then you can wipe the mess with a paper towel and throw it away, along with your mask and gloves. After that, you can continue cleaning as you usually would for the area in mind. But before you do that, you should take a moment to call a professional rodent exterminator like the ones at Garrie Pest Control.

Garrie Pest Control Rodent Exterminators

For over 50 years, Garrie Pest Control has been helping to keep homes and businesses in the Lower Hudson Valley pest-free. We know the damage that rats and mice can cause if left untreated. They can tear through your insulation, wood and wiring – causing risk of an electrical fire. Rodents can ruin your belongings and contaminate your food. To put it simply, they are trouble, and our team knows exactly how to deal with them. Your Garrie Pest Control expert will craft a removal and prevention plan that’s personalized for you, and your home’s needs. When we’re done, you’ll be able to live with the ease and comfort that comes from not always being on the lookout for mystery poop. To get started, contact us today!

5 Preparation Steps for Rodent Control Service

A mouse in Peekskill NY - Garrie Pest Control

All homeowners dread the moment that they see a mouse or a rat scurrying across the floor. Unfortunately, where there is one rodent, there is almost always a family of rodents. This means that when you find one, your best option to get rid of them quickly is to contact a local mouse or rat exterminator.

If you’re expecting a visit from an exterminator soon, you might be wondering how you can get your home ready for your appointment with the technician. We’ve laid out our 5 most important steps to prep your home for professional rodent control! Read on to learn from our experts at Garrie Pest Control. 

How to Prepare for Rodent Removal

Your rodent exterminator will be able to work most efficiently if you take a few steps to help them with their process. These 5 steps will let you and your technician find all of the rodents on your property quickly and easily:

  • Prep the kitchen: Rats and mice are always out for a meal, so preparing your kitchen is a crucial step. Make sure that all of your food is sealed and securely stowed away in your pantry or refrigerator. Throw out any damaged or rotten food items and clear out the spaces on top of and around your fridge, stove, and sink.
  • Clean up trash and boxes: Sweep, vacuum, and clean all around your house next. All of the trash should be taken out and you should place lids on your trash bins, both indoor and outdoor. Boxes, bugs, and other storage items should be folded or closed and stowed away to prevent any unnecessary hiding spots. This will give your exterminator the best opportunity to lay effective bait.
  • Seal visible cracks and holes: Walk around your home and inspect all of the walls and baseboards. Look for small holes, cracks, and spaces that do not seal correctly. Mice can fit through gaps as little as a quarter of an inch, and rats can fit through spaces measuring one-half of an inch, so fill and repair these cracks if you can, or report them to the landlord if you live in an apartment.
  • Take notes of rodent sightings: Write a list of all the places where you or anyone in your family has seen rodents or noticed signs of them. Let your technician know where the rodent sightings took place, along with the evidence of rodent activity in particular locations. The technician will then be able to target their search to the areas where the rodents are likely active.
  • Safety prep: If you find any rodent urine or feces around your house, depose of it quickly and carefully, being sure not to touch it with bare skin or prolong your exposure to it. Rodent waste can carry many diseases and should be dealt with delicately.

Ready for Rodent Control in Peekskill NY?

If you’ve seen or noticed signs of rodents around your property recently, it’s time to reach out to your local rodent control company. Given the many dangers and constant nuisance that rats and mice pose, it’s important to have any infestations dealt with swiftly and professionally. For a free quote, contact our rat and mice exterminators today!

Warning Signs of Rats and What You Can Do About Them

A rat on the street near Peekskill NY - Garrie Pest Control

There are many reasons why you don’t want to deal with rats in your house. They cause a general disruptance, spread filth, chew through wires, and cause property damage. They can even pose a health risk by carrying diseases! What’s worse, they are active all year long in Peekskill NY. Because their activity peaks in the colder months of the year, we have to be on high alert against rodents during the winter. If you think you might have a rat infestation in your home and you’re wondering what to do about it, read on. The rodent control technicians at Garrie Pest Control have put together advice for recognizing signs of rats and keeping them out of your home.

Common Signs of Rodents in Peekskill NY

Unfortunately, rats tend to stay in the structures of our homes, crawl spaces, attics, and other hidden places, so it can be harder to tell if your home is infested than with some other pests. Hearing scratching noises in your walls is a good indicator of rodent activity. You might have also found rat droppings in corners of your home, rub marks where rats run along your walls, or nests in your attic made of shredded cardboard insulation, or similar material. 

If you’ve noticed any of these signs, check around your home for holes that rats could have squeezed through. Keep in mind that they can fit through gaps the size of a quarter! Here are some things to check for around the outside of your home:

  • Cracked foundation and siding
  • Broken pipes and gutters
  • Broken or loose shingles
  • Gaps around windows and doors

How to Prevent Rat Infestations

Whether you’ve found rats or you’ve found ways to get in, it’s time to seal off these entry points. Here are some important ways to go about this: 

  • Use a silicone-based caulk to seal cracks. Small gaps in your foundation or around your windows are easily dealt with using a bit of caulk.
  • Block off large holes with sheet metal. Larger openings that need repairs can be temporarily covered up with sheet metal and screws.
  • Use lath screens for irregular holes. If you have an odd-shaped hole that sheet metal can’t contort to, lath screens are a pliable option.
  • Complete general repair work. The present is always the best time to handle repairs. Especially in the winter when the threat of a rat invasion is looming, you should take care of any exterior issues.

Professional Rodent Protection

If you have rodents in your home that you can’t get rid of or you’re just looking for a professional touch for your rodent prevention this winter, reach out to your local pest control company. The rat exterminators at Garrie Pest Control are experts in both rodent removal and prevention—we have been assessing homes in Peekskill NY for rodent activity for almost 50 years. For a free quote, contact our team today!

Expect More Fall-Winter Pest Activity

What rats look like in Peekskill NY - Garrie Pest Control

With each passing season, a whole new group of pests passes through the area around Peekskill NY. New York is infamous for its unpredictable weather, and changes in rainfall, sunlight, and even barometric pressure all affect the active pest populations in the region. This means that pest prevention is an active and never-ending process for local homeowners.

If you’re looking to get ahead of our usual winter pest issues, read on. Garrie Pest Control’s technicians have some advice to share on recent weather patterns, how they have altered active pest populations, and what you can do about it!

Fall and Winter Pests in Peekskill NY

Have you noticed an increase in rainfall this autumn? With scattered waves of precipitation starting earlier in the year in 2021, certain pest issues have inflated, the most notable being mosquitoes and ticks. These blood-suckers thrive in warm and wet environments, so summer and early autumn rain allow them to sustain their breeding populations for longer than they usually would.

However, once temperatures drop to a consistent level of 50 degrees or below, rodent infestations become the primary problem. We expect to see consistent snowfall starting earlier this year, so rats and mice will be quick to look for homes to hide in for warmth and shelter during a long winter. Rodents are able to squeeze their bodies through smaller holes than an inexperienced homeowner might expect.

The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) has put out their biannual Bug Barometer for Fall & Winter of 2021. You can read the full report here.

2021 Bug Barometer - Garrie Pest Control

How to Prevent Pests in the Colder Seasons

As the temperatures drop, and especially as snow starts to fall, we have to adapt our pest prevention strategies to keep up with pertinent pest pressures. Here are three important ways to reduce your chances of an infestation this fall and winter:

  1. Make sure there are no gaps through which rodents can enter your home. Look around your home for cracks in the foundation and walls, broken vents and roofing, or gaps under windows and doors.
  2. Be careful with food and trash. Make sure you clean up promptly after your meals, sealing your food in airtight containers. Additionally, use sealable trash bins and take your garbage out often.
  3. Maintain your yard. Piles of firewood and yard waste will create temporary hiding places for rats, mice, and other pests. Also, keeping your grass cut short will prevent standing water from pooling up in your yard. This will limit mosquito and tick activity.

Need Help with Pest Control in Peekskill NY?

Whether you’re having trouble keeping pests out of your home or you’re not sure if you’re taking the right steps to prevent pest problems, the technicians at your local pest control company can help. Our techs at Garrie Pest Control can help you inspect your property for vulnerabilities, complete any necessary pest extermination or removal, and follow up with preventative treatments as necessary to keep your home clean all year long. Contact us today for a free quote!

Do You Know How to Prepare for Fall Pests?

A rat in someone's home in Peekskill NY - Garrie Pest Control

When the weather starts to cool down for the first time in many months, all sorts of pests begin their preparations for a harsh winter. Looking for warmth and shelter from our chilly New York winters, countless kinds of insects and rodents try to take refuge inside our homes and on our properties. If you’ve lived around Peekskill for a while, you know how susceptible to pest problems our homes can become. Looking for a way to combat them? Read on for advice from our expert technicians at Garrie Pest Control!

Common Fall Pests in Peekskill NY

All sorts of pests live in New York, but there are a few to note that commonly cause trouble for homeowners come autumn. Here is our list of pests to watch out for this fall:

  • Roaches: Cockroaches make their way indoors when the temperatures start to drop. The problem with roaches is that you may not notice that your home is infested until the size of the outbreak grows quite large.
  • Beetles: Ground beetles, powderpost beetles, and carpet beetles are all more prominent in the fall. These beetles can cause all different sorts of slow-developing damage to your property.
  • Spiders: Spiders get into our homes looking for cluttered places to hide and insects to eat. Having an infestation of smaller pests can quickly lead to a spider outbreak, too.
  • Rodents: Most infamously, rats and mice love to get into our walls, attics, and crawl spaces to take shelter and forage for food during the fall.

How to Pest-Proof Your Home for Fall

Once a pest infestation is already underway in your home, you won’t find much success getting rid of them without professional help in most cases. The best way to enjoy a pest-free fall and winter is to take steps beforehand to reduce your risk of an infestation. There are several ways you can prepare your home for fall:

  1. Close any gaps that pests could get through. This could mean weather stripping your doors, fixing screens on your vents and windows, sealing cracks in your pipes, fixing broken roof tiles, and more.
  2. Keep your yard tidy. By clearing out yard waste promptly, cutting your grass short, reducing standing water buildup, and more, you can reduce the number of pest hiding places and food sources.
  3. Clean up promptly. Wash all of your dishes after eating, clean up spills when they happen, and store your food away in airtight containers.
  4. Seal your trash. Use trash cans with lids that seal or close tightly. Also, be sure to take the trash out of your house often and keep your bins as far from your home as you can.

Professional Help with Fall Pest Control

If you’re already mid-infestation in your home in Peekskill NY, you can count on your local pest control company to handle the problem. The expert technicians at Garrie Pest Control are well-versed in the particular pest pressures in our climate and have been removing pests from local residences for almost half a century. For a free quote, contact us today!