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Rodents Pose Health and Property Risks During Winter Months

27 November, 2013

Reading, PA, Nov. 27, 2013 – Homeowners work hard to keep their homes safe and healthy for their loved ones, especially during the holiday season. Uninvited guests, especially small, furry rodents, are never welcome and for good reason. The Rentokil family of pest control companies (Ehrlich Pest Control, Western Exterminator, and Presto-X Pest Control), warns that mice and rats can pose serious health and property risks once inside the home.

White footed mouse

The accumulation of rodent feces can spread bacteria, trigger allergic reactions in humans and cause diseases such as salmonella and hantavirus. Rodent gnawing will cause product damage and food spoilage, and their droppings make the environment unsanitary in relatively short periods of time.  They are also prolific breeders.  For example, a house mouse can produce up to 13 offspring 6 to 8 times a year, and infestations can rapidly get out of control.

“The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) reports that rodents invade an estimated 21 million homes in the United States every winter, threatening the health of families and damaging property through their gnawing and nesting habits,” said Nancy Troyano, PhD, entomologist for Rentokil. “Moreover, these pests can enter a structure through very small openings including cracks as small as a dime, making it easy for them to find a way indoors and quickly cause a full-blown infestation.”

Rentokil encourages homeowners to be on the lookout for common signs of rodent infestations, including:

  • Droppings. Typically left behind in kitchen cabinets and pantries, along walls, on top of wall studs or beams, near nests, and in boxes, bags, old furniture and other objects
  • Noises. Rodents often makescurrying sounds most often at night as they move about and nest.
  • Runways. Rodents repeatedly use the same pathways between their nest and food sources
  • Gnaw marks. Rodents can do significant damage with their incisors and will gnaw on all types of objects including electrical wires
  • Grease/ rub marks. The oils and dirt from a rodent’s fur stain the wall areas next to runways
  • Damaged food packages. Rodents consume a wide variety of foods, including cereal grains, seeds, meats, vegetables, pet foods and sweets

“Rodents are unwanted guests during any time of the year,” Troyano said. “It is important to take the right steps to prevent and control any possible rodent infestation.”

For more information on rodents and how to protect your home, visit our mice preventative tips page.

About Rentokil North America
J.C. Ehrlich Pest Control (www.jcehrlich.com), Western Exterminator (www.westernexterminator.com), and Presto-X Pest Control (www.prestox.com) are all part of the Rentokil family of companies in North America. They provide commercial and residential pest control, bioremediation, bird control, vegetation management, deer repellent services, wild-animal trapping and termite control from more than 150 local offices in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Rentokil is the world’s largest commercial pest control company, operating in 49 countries worldwide. For more information, visit https://www.rentokil.com/us