Philly Rodent Control Tips

Eek! A mouse! When the temperatures drop, furry critters such as mice and other rodents are looking for someplace warm to live. Don’t let them take over your Philadelphia home this winter. Follow these tips to keep them out.

From a distance, a little mouse can look cute and cuddly. Some people even keep them as pets. But when a mouse moves into your home, uninvited, he doesn’t look so cute, and the damage he causes, from chewing on everything, to leaving droppings on your counter tops, can be more than just a nuisance. When it comes to rodent control, prevention is often the best solution. But even if mice or other furry creatures have already invaded your home, you have some options for keeping them under control, too.

Keep Them Out

If you’re living in a home in Philadelphia that’s older, such as a rowhouse in South Philly or Center City, odds are it has a few areas that are acting as an open door to mice, rats, or other rodents. Mice don’t need much to get into a house. An opening the size of a nickel can be big enough for them. Looking for and blocking off any crevices, cracks, or holes will help keep the critters out this winter.

You can use steel wool to fill in any cracks or holes in the walls, such as by doorways or around the pipes that lead into your home. Another option is to use caulk to fill in open areas near pipes, drains, or cables. Check the screens on your windows, too. If there are any holes in the screens, replace them. You might not plan on opening the windows in the winter, but you don’t want to give rodents an easy way in once spring rolls around.

Make Your Home Unappealing to Pests

Making your home an environment that discourages rodents and small animals from living there is another part of rodent control. If you see any signs of a mouse or other animal infestation, give your home a good, deep clean. Make sure foods are kept in tightly sealed containers that mice can’t chew through. Glass or metal containers are ideal, as some critters will easily chew through paper, cardboard, or even plastic. Vacuum up any droppings and use a disinfectant to wipe down the counters, stovetop, and other surfaces.

If you have pets, set out their food in a bowl, then put the food back in a tightly sealed container after they’ve finished eating. Don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink or dishwasher, either.

Trap Them

Trapping mice and other rodents isn’t fun, but it’s usually necessary if the critters have invaded your home. It’s typically better to use non-poisonous traps, as rodent poison can be dangerous for all living things in your home, including people. If you do end up catching a mouse in a trap, getting rid of it can be tricky. Dispose of a dead mouse by place it in a small plastic bag, sealing the bag, then placing it in the garbage. If the mouse is still alive, you can humanely get rid of it by driving miles away from your home and releasing it.

Call the Pros

You’re not necessarily on your own when it comes to keeping your home free of rodents and other pests. While the city of Philadelphia won’t take care of mice or other pests in your home, you can hire a local exterminator to help identify the areas where rodents are getting in and to help you trap or kill the critters.

This winter, you want your home to be warm and inviting, but for people (and pets) only. Don’t let rodents move in and take over your space!

Image Source: Flickr/Mark Fowler

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