Rat Droppings: How to Identify and Clean Rat Poop
One of the most common signs of a rat infestation is the dropping. Apart from being an unpleasant sight, rat feces can become a breeding ground for mold, cause odor problems, and expose you to various health risks.
Rats can spread Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome virus through inhalation. The virus is common in saliva, urine, and droppings. Moreover, it can cause respiratory diseases in humans.
Sometimes it’s challenging to tell the difference between rat and mouse droppings. Read on to learn how rat poop looks like, and tips on how to clean rat shit.
How to Identify Rat Droppings
What does rat poop look like? Rat turds are small brown droppings that are about a quarter-inch in length on average. They have rounded ends and can appear scattered. You may find them spread out in thousands instead of piles. Also, they have a chalk-like appearance and dry with age.
How does rat poop look? Rat poop looks similar to mouse droppings but it’s significantly larger. You’ll often find them near insulations. However, mouse feces are smaller and have an elongated shape with a sharp end. Another point to note is that fresh rat poop is shiny and dark.
You can spot these drippings along the wall of a shed, garage, behind storage shelves, underneath kitchen appliances, behind stored boxes, and in attic spaces.
How to Clean Rat Droppings Safely
It’s essential to take the necessary precautions when cleaning rat excrement. Do not stir up dust by vacuuming nesting materials, urine, or droppings. That can cause the parasites to become airborne, which could expose you to different diseases like leptospirosis, rat-bite fever, and salmonellosis.
Below are a few tips to get started.
Wear Protective Gear
Avoid touching the waste directly. Instead, use rubber gloves and have a facemask on to avoid inhaling any stench. You can also get protective goggles.
Ventilate the Place
Open the doors and windows to allow fresh air in. You can switch on the fans to dispel the stale air. Other home items you can use to remove the stink of rat urine are raw onions, baking soda, charcoal, and vinegar. Put a bowl in any room or attic where the stench lingers.
Use a Disinfectant
Spray the feces and urine with a disinfectant. Alternatively, you can use a combination of water and bleach. Allow the mixture to soak for five minutes. Remember to always follow the instructions on a commercial disinfectant for dilution and disinfection time.
After disinfecting the whole area, use a paper towel and pick the droppings. Dispose of these in the garbage, preferably in a wrapped bag.
Clean and Disinfect the Whole Place
Go through the floors and countertops as rodents or their droppings might have contaminated these places. Use the bleach solution to disinfect all floors and surfaces. Take a paper towel and dry the surfaces.
Shampoo any upholstered furniture or steam clean carpets that have evidence of rodent exposure. Soak any clothing and bedding in hot water if exposed to rodent droppings or urine.
Handling Rat Droppings in the Attic
Rats love to hide in the attic, as it’s hidden and quiet. However, handling this space can be problematic. You need to take the necessary precautions when dealing with rat feces contamination in the attic.
The most challenging part of cleaning the attic is that you may not be able to clear all the waste as it could be spread out everywhere. The droppings could be in places you can’t reach or see.
However, you can handle this by vacuuming the entire attic thoroughly. Ensure that you remove any soiled insulation. You also need to decontaminate the place with a strong disinfectant or bleach mixture. That helps to get rid of the organic source of the odors and neutralize any harmful matter the vacuum couldn’t suck out.
Prevention is key to ensuring that these rodents don’t have access back to your attic. Go through the attic and check for any openings. Fix and seal any openings and cracks.
Call in a Professional Pest Control Company
If you’re dealing with a rat infestation, you need to call in a pest control company for cleanup, sanitation, and exclusion services. They have experienced staff that can clean rat debris and remove the pheromone scent left behind. Also, they remove any damaged or contaminated insulation and replace it if you wish.
Another rodent control technique is exclusion. They’ll inspect your house and foundation for any holes. Afterward, they will seal these holes, repair screens, and add door sweeps. You may also need to consider air duct cleaning.
Identifying rat droppings doesn’t have to be complicated. All you need is to look at the size, color, and location. Cleaning through vacuuming or insulation removal is recommended. Sometimes you may need an enzyme cleaner for your attic. Look at the above rat droppings images to determine if you’re dealing with a rat infestation.
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