Rats are very resourceful creatures. They are athletic, being able to swim very well, walk across power lines, squeeze through tiny cracks and climb vertical surfaces. All of these abilities allow them to gain access into most buildings. However, they are also equipped with a powerful sense of smell, which helps them detect buildings that have ample food sources. Let’s take a look at how rats use their sense of smell to target homes for infestation.
The rat sense of smell
Norway rats are born almost completely blind, so they have to heavily rely on their sense of smell for a week or so until they are capable of seeing. This illustrates the emphasis that the sense of smell has in the rat world, and this emphasis stays with rats for their entire lives. They also need to rely on this strong sense of smell, because they have to travel in the dark and they are nocturnal animals.
This is why it’s so important to keep food inside the home in sealed containers. Rats have such a powerful sense of smell, that they can sense whether there is food in the home from the outside. If this doesn’t seem extraordinary enough, researchers have found that rats can smell changes in the weather.
Dealing with Norway rats
So you have these rodents that have an almost supernatural sense of smell, how do you deal with them? We’ve already mentioned that you need to keep your food stored in sealed containers, including your pet’s food, but rats will enter the home when they need shelter from the cold as well. As such, the best preventive measure that you can put in place to protect your home against a rat infestation is to make sure that all the gaps, cracks and holes that are wider than a quarter of an inch are sealed with steel wool. Rats are able to gnaw through weaker materials, but steel wool is too tough and it can hurt the rats, so they tend to avoid it.
If an infestation has already taken place, the best way to deal with it is with the help of a pest control pro. Rats are quite adept at evading control efforts, and larger infestations are very tough to deal with. If you have a Norway rat infestation in your home, contact us today and we will help you remove it.