Preventive Measures for Rodent Infestations

The old maxim that “Prevention is Better than Cure” is true regarding rodent infestations. The most important preventive measures involve eliminating food and shelter. Keep dumpsters and trash receptacles closed. Store feed and grains in rodent-proof containers.

Trim bushes and dense vegetation that might provide cover or nesting areas. Plant members of the mint family in and around the home as a natural deterrent. Check out this website at

Preventing Rodents from Entering Your Home


Rodents seek three things when entering homes – food, water and shelter. They are especially drawn to homes as the weather turns cooler. Fortunately, rodents can easily be kept out by eliminating their food sources and removing places to hide.

Inside the home, make sure to store garbage in sealed containers and to clean up trash on a regular basis. Also, store pet foods in rodent-proof containers and pick up any uneaten vegetables or fruits from gardens and trees. If possible, keep compost piles away from the house. Also, examine where pipes enter the house and use a combination of steel wool and caulk to block entrances.

On the outside, make sure that doors and windows have tight seals. Install door sweeps and repair any screens that are torn or missing. Also, screen vents and chimney openings and put a cap on the chimney. Examine the foundation and walls for cracks that could allow rodents to enter and seal them with caulk or wire mesh.

Ensure that woodpiles and stacks of lumber are kept well away from the house, as they can serve as nesting sites for rats and mice. Also, keep brush and dense shrubbery trimmed so that they do not provide cover or protection for rodents.

Finally, consider installing a 2-foot-wide barrier of cement around the perimeter of your home. This simple measure will deter rodents from crawling under the house, gaining entry through foundation cracks, and then running along piping to find their way indoors.

In addition, consider using repellents on your property. Some of the most effective repellents include peppermint oil, which can be rubbed on areas where rodent activity is evident or sprinkled around the yard. Also, plant mint in the garden and rub it on baseboards or around attic beams to prevent rodents from entering.

Keeping the environment, wildlife and pets safe is the best way to eliminate the risk of a rodent infestation. Preventive measures help to minimize the need for rodenticides, which can cause slow, painful deaths and also risk the lives of predators like owls that feed on them.

Preventing Rodents from Entering Your Workplace

Rodents can present serious problems for businesses, especially when they invade work spaces and warehouses. Rodents carry diseases, like hantavirus and rat bite fever, that pose a health risk to employees. They also contaminate food, create dust that can trigger asthma and cause sneezing, gnaw on electrical wires, and damage wood and drywall.

Taking preventive measures can help keep mice and rats out of commercial facilities. The first sign of rodents in a workplace is usually droppings, but other telltale signs include gnaw marks on boxes, gnawed areas along pipes, and sounds of scurrying or running.

Proper food storage is another important prevention measure. If possible, avoid storing food in cardboard boxes and paper bags, which are easily chewed by rodents. Store all food in plastic or glass containers, and make sure that these are sealed. It’s also a good idea to store all foods, including pet food, more than 6 inches off the ground. In addition, crumbs and dropped food should be cleaned up as soon as they appear in order to discourage rodents from seeking out these easy sources of food.

It’s also a good idea to empty garbage cans frequently and use one-way valves in toilets, which will prevent rodents from entering the building through sewer systems. Lastly, it’s a good idea to place spring traps in all outbuildings and other places where rodent activity is commonly found. Be sure to wear rubber or latex gloves when cleaning up traps, dead rodents, or contaminated areas to avoid contact with urine, saliva, and other germs.

Finally, regular inspections should be made of all entry points to buildings, warehouses, and other commercial facilities. Check for small holes that may be used by rodents to gain access, such as those in the walls, foundation, and corners. Fill small holes with steel wool, and caulk or seal larger ones with lath screen, cement, hardware cloth, or metal sheeting.

As with homes, the most effective method of preventing rodents in commercial spaces is to reduce their availability of food and shelter. Be sure to sweep store floors regularly and keep both the inside of stores and the surrounding area clear of discarded goods, old equipment, or stacked wood piles, all of which could provide rodents with food, shelter, and hiding spots.

Preventing Rodents from Entering Your Community

Rodents will settle wherever they can find food and shelter. This means that the community needs to be vigilant about eliminating any items that can attract rodents, such as piles of garbage scraps and other debris.

During the early stages of a new rodent infestation, you may not see any evidence of mice or rats at home or work, but it is important to keep an eye out for gnawing marks and other signs of rodent activity. Look in areas that hold packaged goods, under sinks, behind appliances and near walls for tooth marks or bits of wood chips. Also listen for gnawing sounds and check for rub marks on surfaces.

If you do find signs of a rodent problem, it is important to act quickly before the population grows and the problem becomes difficult or even impossible to control. If you are unsure what to do, contact a professional pest control service such as Richland Pest & Bee Control.

The best preventive measure is to remove sources of food and water that will attract rodents. This includes storing food in sealed containers, cleaning up garbage cans regularly and keeping buildings and their surroundings neat and tidy. Check inside and outside for potential entry points — mice can fit through holes the size of a dime, while rats can contort themselves to enter spaces as small as a quarter. Seal any openings with wire wool,’mouse mesh’ (available at many hardware stores) or caulk.

In addition to removing food and water, the next step is to eliminate places where rodents can nest and raise their young. This means destroying any nests found in or under the house, barn or shed and preventing rodents from accessing outdoor foods by removing bird feeders and keeping garbage cans tightly shut.

Finally, encourage natural predators to control rodent populations by placing owl boxes around the property. This can help reduce the risk of disease-carrying parasites such as fleas, ticks and mites that can infest people. In addition, it is important to properly clean any areas where rodent urine or droppings are found. Be sure to wear rubber or plastic gloves when cleaning to avoid direct contact with these substances, and always wet down contaminated surfaces with a disinfectant before sweeping or vacuuming.

Preventing Rodents from Entering Your Business

Rodents are a huge threat to businesses of all kinds. They are prolific breeders who populate quickly and destroy everything they touch, chewing through the tiniest of holes to get to food, supplies and wiring. A rodent infestation can damage your inventory, ruin the reputation of your business, and even cause a health hazard by spreading disease and contaminating food.

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent rodents from entering your business. First, identify potential entry points. A gap near a door or window, an open sewer drain, or a loose piece of masonry is all a mouse or rat needs to gain entrance. Use effective IPM to seal these areas and keep rodents from finding shelter and a new home in your business.

Then, clean up frequently cluttered spaces. Remove piles of trash and debris, and store crates and bins away from walls. Clear out garages and storage rooms to make it harder for mice and rats to hide in nooks and crannies. Regularly sweep and mop the floors of your business to make it less appealing to rodents.

If you own a restaurant, be sure to keep all food in tightly sealed containers. If you don’t, a single rodent can cause cross-contamination and put hundreds of people at risk of illness.

Retailers should also store all foods and bottled drinks more than 6 inches off the ground, to keep rodents from reaching them. It is a good idea to keep garbage cans tightly closed as well.

When you’re managing a garden or growing crops, be sure to clean up fallen fruits and vegetables and to remove all trash from your property regularly. You can also apply a rat guard to your fruit trees, or spray predator urine around your property as a natural deterrent.

A hotel or apartment complex can be especially vulnerable to rodents, as they offer plenty of hiding spots and food for the pests. Keep the area surrounding your building neat and tidy, and regularly remove weeds, brush, and tall grasses from the yard.