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The Most Important Things for Dallas Homeowners to Know About Rats

Oct 11, 2021

Rats rank pretty high on most people’s lists of things they hope to never encounter in the home.

Still, you must know your enemy to combat them effectively. Understanding the signs and traits of rats will prepare you to deal with any that come your way.

Rats Inside the Home – What They Look Like and How to Diagnose a Rat Problem

The Dallas, TX area is home to two common varieties of invasive rats: Brown rats and black rats.

First, there are brown rats (also called common rats, street rats, sewer rats, wharf rats, and Norwegian rats). They are typically brown or brownish-gray in color with lighter-colored bellies. Brown rats have shaggy fur, blunt noses, beady black eyes, and short, hairless, wormlike tails.

There are also black rats (also called house rats, roof rats, and ship rats). These rodents have slender bodies covered in dark brown or black fur interspersed with gray. They’re also recognizable by their pointed snouts, large eyes and ears, and long tails. Their tails are so long they exceed the rest of their bodies in length.

Signs That You Have a Rat Problem

Rat droppings on wood

Rats are crafty creatures adept at gaining access to hard-to-reach spots. Indications that you might have an infestation on your hands include:

  • Droppings
  • Tiny footprints
  • Faint scratching noises
  • Greasy “rub marks” along baseboards and low-lying surfaces
  • Unexplainable damage to pipes, wiring, carpets, woodwork, or drywall
  • Burrowed holes around your home’s exterior
  • Evidence of nesting, such as small mounds of chewed fabric or insulation

Locating a Rat’s Nest

Rats in a nest made of paper and cardboard

When building their nests, rats look for dark, quiet places close to potential food sources.

In your home, you’re likely to find rats lurking under floorboards, inside walls, and behind appliances. You can find them in more predictable places like attics, basements, and cellars.

Are Rats Dangerous?

In a word, yes.

Rats are capable of spreading diseases directly to humans through exposure to their urine and feces. There are some particularly nasty ones like hantavirus, hemorrhagic fever, leptospirosis, salmonella, and even the plague.

Not only that, but they can “piggyback” other pests such as fleas, ticks, and mites into your home. These sorts of pests often come with their own set of frustrating complications and health risks.

Rats can even wreak havoc on your home by gnawing through electrical wiring, water pipes, ductwork, framing members, insulation, and other materials and structures in search of food.

Needless to say, this sort of damage can result in costly repairs or even increase the risk of fires or flooding.

Solutions to Help You Get Rid of Rats Once and For All

A pest control technician wearing a black glove, holding a rat by the tail.

Being proactive is always better than being reactive. Unfortunately, you often won’t realize you’re dealing with a full-blown infestation until it’s too late.

At that point, the only surefire way to solve your rodent problem is to work with a qualified exterminator. That’s where Romney Pest Control comes in.

Trust the Best Company in Dallas

Don’t let uninvited guests take over your home. Contact the Dallas pest professionals at Romney Pest Control today. We’ll handle your rodents and have the tools, knowledge, and experience needed to keep your home safe year-round.


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