Rodents are a group of nuisance pests that includes mice, rats, and squirrels. These animals can contaminate food, damage property, and spread disease. The rodents that most often come into conflict with people in the United States are:
Rodents thrive across the world in almost any habitat with access to food and water. Because of their small size, they can be difficult to keep out of a home. Rats can get indoors through holes the size of a quarter, while mice can use gaps the size of a dime to come inside.
Rodents & Disease
In addition to being tough to control, rodents may carry diseases and taint food with waste, fur, and saliva. In fact, mice can contaminate about 10 times the amount of food they eat. The CDC links some rodents to hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, a disease fatal in about 36 percent of all reported U.S. cases.
The pests are also hosts for fleas, which can spread plague and diseases like lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus. This illness mostly affects those with weakened immune systems and may result in headaches, fever, and meningitis. It can also cause complications during pregnancy.
It is not advisable to handle any wild rodent. They are equipped with large teeth and are capable of transmitting a variety of bacteria, viruses and diseases through their saliva, feces and urine.
If you locate a rodent within your home, it is best to contact a pest management professional for removal and identification. The presence of one rodent within a home could signal an infestation.
Keep all children and pets away from the rodent. If cornered, the rodent will bite to defend itself.