Just as you or I would seek the shelter of a warm house as temperatures start to dip, pests of all kinds do too.  In particular, rodents begin their annual trek indoors when the mercury drops.  Below are some helpful suggestions on keeping the mice out of your house.

Keep Doors and Windows Closed

Though it may seem obvious, there is no more simple opening for rats than an open door.  Sunny fall days may be perfect for airing out the house, but be sure to do so with a guarded eye.  Rats and mice will simply run inside this time of year, find a spot to hide among your throw pillows and—tada, you have a problem.  So keep your doors and windows closed and check for any potential cracks that need fixing.  Replace old weatherstripping under doors as well.  Remember: mice can fit into a hole the size of a dime!

 

Store Pet Food Indoors

It makes sense to keep the smell of nasty pet food outside, but it can do more harm than good when it starts attracting rodents.  Rats love pet food and will come from far and wide to enjoy a nice gorging on your cat’s dinner—particularly in the fall.  Seeking shelter and a consistent food source, they will think they’ve scored big time when they find kitty’s grub.  So, feed your pets inside and store their food in airtight containers indoors to keep the rodents away.

 

Check for Holes Outside

Take a quick stroll around the outside of your home and think like a big, hairy Norway rat or a tiny field mouse.  Where can you get in?  Find any vulnerabilities in your home’s exterior and take action.  If there are cracks, fill them with caulk.  Holes around pipes or vents should be stuffed with a fine mesh steel wool.  Steel wool is ideal for keeping rodents away because they can’t chew through it.  

 

Store Wood Piles Away from Buildings

Wood piles are notorious for harboring all kinds of pests, and rodents love them.  They provide an ideal sheltering place where rodents can build nests and raise large, happy families in your yard.  Keep them from moving inside by storing your wood piles as far from your house as you can; at least 25’.  This will hopefully encourage them to stay put far away.  On another note, it is best to bring wood from outside and put it directly into the fire to avoid any other pests thawing out from your kindling and setting up shop in your basement.

 

Be on the Lookout

Make it a habit to keep a keen eye out for any signs of rodents in your home.  Chewed carpet or shredded paper are indicators.  If you spot droppings around your cupboards or kitchen, you’ll know it: they are small, dark brown pellets ranging in size from 1/16-1/4”.  If you do think mice or rats have made themselves at home, give us a call and we’ll come help you out.  

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