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rat on a railing outside of a massachusetts home

What are rats?

Like mice, rats are small rodents very common to Rhode Island. Rodents are characterized by teeth that never stop growing. The animal must keep their teeth short by chewing on things.

What do they look like?

Rats are easily distinguished from mice based on their size. Adult rats can grow to be 8 to 10 inches in length, plus the tail. They can be grey, brown, black, or a variety of other colors, with the belly usually being lighter than the rest of the body.

Do rats bite?

Rats will bite if they feel threatened and the bite can be quite painful.

Are rats dangerous?

Yes. Rats have been proven to be carriers of many different diseases and they can introduce other pests into your home, such as fleas and ticks, which can also cause health problems. They can also cause structural damage to your home with their constant gnawing and chewed wires pose serious fire hazards.

What are the signs of a rat infestation?

With a serious rat infestation the first thing you will notice is rat droppings. They are larger than mouse droppings, about 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch long. Look for rat nests in areas of low traffic that have a lot of clutter. Common locations include the basement, the attic and crawlspaces. The nests will be made of shredded material such as newspaper and cardboard.

Why do I have a rat problem?

The rats in your home likely found their way inside in search of food, warmth and shelter. They often enter homes through tears in screens or openings around pipes and vents. A rat can fit through a hole the size of a quarter.

How do I get rid of rats?

Rats are very difficult to get rid of once they have found their way inside your home. They breed very quickly; a female rat can produce up to 20 babies in one litter. This means you must catch the problem early or it will quickly get out of hand. To prevent rodents from entering a structure, their capabilities must be understood. Our wildlife division has the experience and knowledge to LOCATE and REPAIR potential entry points to reduce rodent activity. Professional rodent control help is almost always needed.  Residents in Providence, Shrewsbury, or elsewhere in Rhode Island or Massachusetts should contact Big Blue Bug Solutions as soon as they see any of the signs of a rat infestation.

Rat prevention tips from Big Blue Bug Solutions

The biggest attraction for rats is food. Store all food properly to avoid attracting rats into your home. Use airtight containers of metal, heavy-duty plastic or glass. Clean any spills and messes immediately. Another step you can take to prevent rats from entering your home is to carefully inspect the outside of your home for possible entry points and fix or seal any openings of more than 1/4 inch.

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