Rats And Mice Inflict More Damage To Homes Than Any Other Mammal In The World
Rats and mice are the most economically significant group of mammal pests in and around homes, as both of these pests inflict more damage to homes annually than any other group of mammals. Rats and mice feed on and contaminate stored food items in homes; they chew on wires, drywall and insulation, and spread Salmonella, Hantavirus and at least 17 other diseases. Also, rats and mice reproduce at astonishingly rapid rates, as two mice found in a garage may be dismissed as cute and harmless one day, but a male and female mouse can produce around 20 offspring in only a few short months.
Many rodents in the US are harmless, such as the grasshopper mice that feed only on insects, as well as multiple rodent species that prefer to dwell in wooded areas and open fields as opposed to human environments. The three most problematic rodent species in and around homes are house mice, roof rats and Norway rats, as these three species have adapted to survive alongside humans. Many residents rely on cats and/or dogs for mouse and rat control within and around homes.
One cat can kill around 1,200 mice per year in residential areas, and according to anecdotal evidence, female cats make better mouse-killers than male cats. Generally, male cats tend to explore large areas where they aggressively toy with mice, but female cats generally wait indoors and within close vicinity of homes to kill mice-invaders. However, even some of the most effective mouse-killing cats can be frightened of large rats, which is why some homeowners rely on dogs for rat control.
It is often said that Jack Russell Terriers make the best rat-hunters, as these dogs are in the habit of squeezing into small ground burrows in order to capture and kill nesting rats around homes. These dogs will shake rats thoroughly within their jaws until the rats become dizzy and unable to inflict defensive bites. They then inflict a fatal crushing blow to the rat’s ribcage. While this method of rat control may sound macabre, removing rats from snap traps is usually just as or even more gory.
Do you rely on dogs and/or cats for mouse and/or rat control within and around your home?
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