Your friend has called you up for a meeting. So, you decide to look for your most expensive pair of shoes for the occasion. Holy Moses! They seem to have a big, nasty hole and next to them some small droppings. Your first suspect is a rat.
Well, these little animals are known to have a taste for the finer things in life such as a new handbag or that new shirt you have been saving up for a special occasion. But, before accusing the rat species falsely of your demise and calling the rat exterminator, it is crucial to know how to identify and clean rat droppings.
What Should You Look For?
There are so many factors to consider when identifying rat poop. They include:
- Color- The poop color can tell you a lot. If the droppings are black, it means that the poop is fresh. The darker it is, the fresher it is. This can help you know if you have a current or an old infestation in your home because old rat poop is dried out and grey. Additionally, fresh rat droppings are moist and are very shiny.
- Smell- Rat droppings have a smell. However, rat urine is stronger. If you notice any bad odor, there is a high chance that it is from their urine, not their droppings.
- Size- Rat droppings have different sizes depending on factors such as species and age of the rat. If they are smaller than a grain of rice then it might be a mouse or a cockroach. Even if mouse and rat dropping share the same shape and color, they differ in size.
- Amount- A rat exterminator can tell a lot from the amount and grouping of droppings. Mice tend to leave 70 to 150 droppings in a day while rats leave 35 to 50.
- Shape- Rat droppings have a pointy shape at the end and a sausage shape in the middle.
Can Location Help One Identify Rat Droppings?
Rats are generally bigger than mice. So, they cannot fit in tiny places such as the cabinet or the back of your silverware drawer. You will often find rat droppings in areas with larger spaces, attic spaces, behind storage, basement, crawl space, garage, underneath kitchen appliances, and wall’s baseboard. Furthermore, you will most likely find rat droppings in a pile did not scatter all over.
Are Rat Droppings Dangerous?
Not only are rats annoying but they can also be very dangerous. Their droppings carry bacteria that can cause diseases to humans. You can contract Salmonella if you eat, or drink things contaminated with rat poop. They are also responsible for other illnesses such as rat-bite fever, leptospirosis, hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis, and Hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome.
How To Clean Rat Droppings
It is essential to follow the guidelines given below to ensure safety:
- Ventilate the Room- Always open the windows and doors for half an hour before starting your cleaning process.
- Use protective gear- Ensure that you always wear rubber gloves, a face mask, and protective goggles. You can never be too careful when it comes to contamination.
- Do not sweep or vacuum- Sweeping the floor can lead to contamination through air and dust. Instead, spray a 10% chlorine bleach solution made using 5 liters of water and 360 milliliters of chlorine bleach.
- Use a paper towel to pick the droppings- After picking up the rat droppings, dispose of them in a plastic bag and ensure you seal them. Do the same for the paper towel and dispose of all of them outside your home.
- Use disinfectant to wipe all the surfaces- Use the same 10% chlorine bleach solution to disinfect the area and a paper towel to dry.
- Wash the hands- Scrub your hands with hot water and disinfectant.
Once you identify and clean the rat droppings, it is essential to call pest control services to the rescue. Keep your pricy bags, shirts, ties, and shoes intact by keeping away pesky pests. With the right services, you can have yourself a clean and pest-free home.