The Danger of Rodents in Your Home
Any homeowner knows that rodents are a nuisance, but did you know they can be potentially dangerous as well? Rodents can not only do physical damage to a property but they can also transmit severe illnesses. This is especially the case for major transport hubs such as Sydney, where imports arrive daily from other countries where rodent transmitted diseases flourish.
So before you think the small mice in the attic are out of harm’s way, you should be aware of what the professionals have to say about them.
Gnawing and physical damage
Mice and rats (the most common rodents found in proximity to humans) can do a significant amount physical damage to your home. Rodents gnaw on non-food items, such as skirting boards and cabinets, to keep their incisor teeth honed. Once they find their way into your home, they will chew their way into any area that looks appealing to them. One of the biggest dangers is the possibility that they will chew threw electrical wiring, causing it short circuit.
In addition to chewing holes everywhere, rodents can also ruin your home through the stench of their droppings. They drop as they walk and many times this will be in highly inaccessible areas, like your walls, appliances, and crawl spaces. While it takes a serious infestation to create this problem if you note the insane rapidity with which they breed it does not take that long to become seriously infested.
Rodents are well known to be carriers of disease, some of are fatal to humans. These include:
- Food poisoning: Specifically salmonella, which is contracted by drinking food or water that is contaminated with rodent dropping faeces.
- Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCM): This viral disease is primarily spread by house mice and exists worldwide, including in Australia. Most people recover from the virus but extreme cases can lead to permanent neurological damage.
- Rickettsialpox: A disease similar to chicken pox, indirectly transmitted by rodents from the mites commonly found on their bodies.
- Hantavirus: Once thought to be rare this disease has been identified in rodents across Australia. This serious and potentially fatal disease is spread through inhalation of dust that contains urine, saliva, or droppings. Direct infection from bites is also possible. There have been no reports of human infection in Australia as yet.
- Plague: Although no incidents of plague have been reported in Australia since 1925, various forms of plague affect countries worldwide, with the disease being transmitted by fleas that piggyback on an infected rodent.
Keeping rodents out
Now that you know some of the dangers, let’s look at some possible solutions to protect your home safe from the dangers that rodents pose.
The best way to keep rodents out of your home is to seal up cracks around pipes, windows, and doors. Even the smallest crack can be seen as an open door for many rodents, who can squeeze through impossibly small gaps. An inexpensive tube of caulking or sealant will usually do the trick.
In case rodents do come inside, traps, glue boards and poisons are some precautionary steps that you can take to add a second layer of protection to your home. If you have children or pets, care must be taken to ensure that any poison is kept out of their reach. Do not use poisons if you have a cat as there is the risk of it being affected through contact with an infected rodent.
If you have seen one or two rodents in your home, there’s no need for alarm. After ensuring that your home is clean and clear of easy rodent food sources (such as unsealed food packets) then you should be able to take care of the situation with some store-bought solutions. However, if you have a larger infestation or live in an area of Sydney that is prone to other pests such termites or cockroaches, you might want to consider seeking professional help and having your house checked for other pests at the same time.
If you’re concerned about rodents and need some help exterminating them, you can contact Pink Pest Services for assistance with professional pest control in Sydney or call 02 9529 5222 for immediate assistance.