How Do I Prevent Mice from Getting in My House?

ratsAt one time or another, mice may be a problem that most homeowners may have to deal with. There are steps that you can take to prevent rodents from getting into your home. If you have recently noticed rodents in your home, you may want to take these steps. However, it is a good idea to complete these steps every year to stop any problems before they start.

Make Sure Mice Are Not Attracted to Your Home

According to the article What Attracts Mice to Your Home?, mice come into your home looking for food and shelter. They want an easy source of water and food. If you can store your food in your sealed containers, it is less likely that the mice will get into your home. Taking the garbage out on a regular basis will also eliminate the things that attract the mice to your home. Clearing out any clutter will also help prevent mice since it will be more difficult for people to hide.

Do an Inspection of the Exterior of Your Home

In addition to clearing out your home of things that may attract mice, you should take the time inspect the exterior or your home at least once a year. There are several areas that you need to check to make sure that rodents and other animals cannot get in.

  • Check the foundation of your home. As you walk around the exterior of your home, check where the foundation meets the siding of your home. Look for any weakened or rotted areas that would be easy for a rodent to chew a hole into. Repair any of these areas. Mice and other animals may take advantage of weakness caused by termites, and you will need to repair that to avoid future issues.
  • Check your crawl space if you have one. In addition to the foundation, you should visually check your crawl space if possible. The rodents may be making nests under your home and then crawling up inside of your home in search of food. Some crawl spaces make it easy to check, while others are more difficult. If you can check, you may be able to quickly identify the problem.
  • Check pipes leading into your home. If there have been any leaks, it weakens the wood and makes it easy for the animals to get in. Repair the wood around the pipes and install deterrents like steel wool or traps to prevent the animals from getting in again.
  • Look at your roof. If branches are hanging over the roof, you should trim them back. Be sure that each vent has a grate or screen over it that will keep rodents and other insects out. If you can see holes under your eaves protect them. Repairing any loose shingles will also protect your home.

Schedule a Professional Inspection

If you have completed this inspection and you are still having troubles, you may want to call a professional to have another set of eyes that can identify where the mice are getting in. An exterminator can help you clear up the problem and install exclusion barriers to prevent rodents getting in again.

 

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Diseases that Rodents Carry

ratsThere are many issues that rodents can cause when they invade your home. They can damage your property, but according to the article Dangers of a Rodent Infestation, one of the biggest issues is the diseases that rodents can spread either through their feces or through direct contact. Here are some of the most common diseases and their symptoms.

  1. Hantavirus

Hantavirus is a deadly disease. It is found in the urine and feces that mice leave behind. People catch this disease when they inhale the dried urine. This usually happens when cleaning up after a rodent infestation which is why it is important to wear a mask and gloves when cleaning up after rodents. Symptoms include tiredness and muscle aches in the hips and backs. After the initial symptoms, the patient will have trouble breathing as their lungs fill with fluid. This has a mortality rate of nearly forty percent.

  1. Lassa Fever

Lassa fever is also spread by inhaling the dried urine and feces of mice. It can be passed from person to person. Signs of the disease include tired ness and a mild fever. However, it can become more serious and lead to hemorrhaging, vomiting and difficulty breathing. Some people will go deaf after contracting the disease. Women who contract this when pregnant have a much higher mortality rate with the disease.

  1. Plague

The plague can be spread through a flea that is infected or from direct contact with the infected animal. Symptoms of the plague vary by the type that you contract. There may be large swelling of the lymph nodes, or the hands or feet may turn black or the patient may have trouble breathing. There are medications that can treat the disease. This is not a disease that you wait to see if it will get better, you should seek medical treatment right away.

  1. Salmonellosis

This is a common illness that is spread by rodents and other pests. This is an illness that can give you abdominal pain, fever, and diarrhea. You may also vomit. There may be blood in the diarrhea. Usually it will develop within three days of exposure and it can last up to a week.  It can lead to typhoid fever and other issues. This often resolves on its own, but it is important to make sure the patient stays hydrated while they are suffering from it.

  1. Tularemia

Tularemia is a bacterium that can be spread by handling the animals or by ingesting contaminated food or water. The disease may act differently depending on how you were exposed to it. It can cause a sore throat and swollen lymph nodes or even pneumonia with difficulty breathing and chest pains. It can also cause ulcers on your hands if you caught it by touching an animal or being bitten.