Forum: Advice / Do It Yourself

Do It Yourself
How do you deal with rat infestation?
By Gavrilushka Comments: 872, member since Wed Jul 11, 2012
On Fri Jan 30, 2015 09:37 AM

Hey guys, I'm stuck in a rock and a hard place right about now. If I can't get this problem fixed, we'd have to move out, which isn't the most convenient thing right now what with uni coming up and it's hard to find a place accepting 2 dogs, 1 cat and 8 kittens. Yeah...

This morning I noticed one of my huskies, Pavlov, had dug his way into the basement (the door has a fairly large gap on the bottom so it wasn't a lot of digging). Cue a bunch of whining and some banging, he got bitten by a rat! And this rat was HUGE! I mean, I mistook it for a possum. Just a month ago I put rat poison everywhere! We had issues with hearing them in the walls where they would run into stuff, thud about, screech and scratch. So, what do I do? We can't afford to get pest control at the moment, is there any short term thing I can do? I know they're eating my dogs breakfast now. I just assumed they were really excited for dinner (which they get indoors, breakfast is outdoors) but it was because the rats bullied them out of their food. :(

10 Replies to How do you deal with rat infestation?

re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By Moonlitefairy06member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 7177, member since Fri Apr 16, 2004
On Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:26 AM
This will only work if 1) you have an attached garage to your house 2) There are no other houses or apartments attached to your home. Even then it might not be totally advisable but...

We had a rat infestation in the garage once. So my dad had us leave the house. He turned on his car, left the garage, and closed the garage door. He killed them with carbon monoxide. Then opened the door to let it clear out before going in, turning off the car, and waiting longer to go in the house and make sure the CO detectors weren't going off (I think he turned them off initially so the fire department wouldn't show up and then turned them back on to test it) But as I said, there are really only circumstances where one can safely do that.
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By SarahdncrPremium member Comments: 635, member since Wed Jul 29, 2009
On Sat Jan 31, 2015 06:16 AM
I was going to say...buy a cat.

But I see she is tied up at the moment with motherhood duties. Plus you say, rat was as big as a possum, and bit your dog. Cat is not going to work here.

Call a professional.

If you are renting, notify your land-lord as most likely they are not only morally bound, but also legally bound to keep vermin out of their rental's.

If they do not budge or are not help then call your local building inspector or community health department inspector, and blow your landlord in. However, once you do that, expect to be moving shortly there after one way or the other. Good luck.
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By hummingbird Comments: 10419, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Sat Jan 31, 2015 10:15 AM
Get the exterminator out! If you buy poison from the shops it's not the strength you need to get rid of rats and you'll have to keep every other animal around away from it.
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By majahayes Comments: 92, member since Mon Dec 01, 2008
On Sat Jan 31, 2015 05:15 PM
Really, the only options you have are call your landlord, call professionals or move. Rats that big, bold and in that big of a population aren't going to be dealt with easily. Rats are very smart and therefore hard to catch, and we're not talking about a random rat or two. Also if they have the balls to attack and bite your dog, I'm very worried about your kittens.
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By Gavrilushka Comments: 872, member since Wed Jul 11, 2012
On Thu Feb 05, 2015 06:36 AM
Sorry I sort of vanished, the cats aren't mine (this stray gave birth in my yard and she was riddled with worms and unfit to care for the babies so now I do) and I've been trying to find them a shelter or something since my husband is allergic.

Anyway, we do have an attached garage, but they never go there. We set up traps there and so far, nothing. I'd ask my landlord about this, but she's currently going through a tough pregnancy (I forgot the name, but it's got to do with the liver, bile and high blood pressure) so I don't want to bother her too much. Money is pretty tight for her too. One of my neighbours used to work in pest removal so he came over and took a look at the place. He said there aren't any entries inside the house, so they must be entering the roof and walls from the outside, but can't get in which is good for the kittens. He was honest with us and said all pest removal will do is set up traps and then take away the dead bodies for about $400. :(

For now, we set up traps and cages in the roof and the basement. Should we get rabies vaccinated? I'm kinda scared...
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By hummingbird Comments: 10419, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Thu Feb 05, 2015 07:59 AM
Rats always run through the same spot, hence the phrase 'A rat run' if you don't set your traps on their runs then you won't catch them.
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By d4jmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 12490, member since Fri Aug 27, 2004
On Thu Feb 05, 2015 08:40 AM
This calls for a professional. Rats are mostly too smart for cage or snap traps, though I have had some luck with glue traps. Please, please, do not use poison. It's not just that you have to keep your other animals away from it. If a rat dies from poison and then one of your animals eats the rat they will die too. That is how I lost my Golden Retriever. :(
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By Gavrilushka Comments: 872, member since Wed Jul 11, 2012
On Fri Feb 06, 2015 08:07 AM
hummingbird wrote:

Rats always run through the same spot, hence the phrase 'A rat run' if you don't set your traps on their runs then you won't catch them.

We set the traps up around the entry points to the roof and basement. My neighbour said that rats are wary of sudden changes to their environment. So far, we caught 2 rats which are gross and fat. I know they can't lose weight rapidly but I'm starting to wonder where they are getting the food from now...because there was bird seed and dried corn in the roof! We own no birds!

d4j wrote:

Please, please, do not use poison. It's not just that you have to keep your other animals away from it. If a rat dies from poison and then one of your animals eats the rat they will die too. That is how I lost my Golden Retriever.

Oh no. :( I'm sorry to hear about that. We've stopped using poison now. We were only using them before because we didn't think they ever left the roof, but we stopped when we first spotted them. I'll try the glue traps. We're looking at ultrasonic sound devices to keep rats away for the long term, but eh. Do they even work?
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By Sumayah Comments: 6876, member since Wed Nov 12, 2008
On Fri Feb 06, 2015 09:14 AM
We had field mice that set up shop in my kitchen. Let me tell you what an unhappy surprise it was to get my oven mitt out of a drawer to discover tiny eyes staring up at me. That was seven or eight years ago. We installed a large sonic device at the entrance to the garage (the kitchen backs up to the garage and they were getting in that way) that plugs in and is on 24/7/365 and we've never had a mouse or other rodent problem since. We also bought smaller sonic devices that plug into wall sockets and put those around the house as well. So far so good.

I will admit that I think at one point they set up a nest in the walls, because late at night I'd hear a skritching sound I couldn't find the source of in my stairwell, but even that I haven't heard in years. But if they did have a nest, it was confined to the walls because there was never any evidence of mice in my house or garage afterwe set up the sonic devices (and I deep clean my house twice yearly - moving the refrigerator and stove out to clean under and behind, emptying the cabinets and washing everything, so I would have noticed mouse droppings or urine marks). And the somic devices don't bother my pets at all. Two dogs, one cat, all fine with them.
re: How do you deal with rat infestation?
By Dancing_EMTmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 3466, member since Wed Dec 08, 2004
On Fri Feb 06, 2015 08:21 PM
Gavrilushka wrote:

I'd ask my landlord about this, but she's currently going through a tough pregnancy (I forgot the name, but it's got to do with the liver, bile and high blood pressure) so I don't want to bother her too much. Money is pretty tight for her too.


Your landlord's pregnancy isn't your problem. Nor are her money issues. If after calling her, she won't have an exterminator come out, report her to the health department. She can either cough up the $400 (or whatever) or she can pay A LOT more in court costs.

You wouldn't let a rat bite your child in your rental house, would you? Our pets are our kids and we sure as hell wouldn't! We'd make it our landlord's problem.

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