Discover our best tips to knowing what kills rats instantly to get your home as clear, healthy, and safe as possible. Let us help you restore your home!
Winter is finally here, and while that may mean getting cozy by the fireside, you might have unwanted visitors making themselves cozy in your home as well.
Experts estimate that rodents invade around 21 million US homes every winter. Though they come seeking warmth and safety, rats mean huge headaches for the average homeowner. From gnawed wires to disgusting droppings, these pests are a nuisance to have around—but what can you do to get rid of them?
If you want a quick solution, you may be wondering, “What kills rats instantly?” The answer is a little more complex than you’d think, but we’ve got you covered below. Read on to learn how to deal with your rat problem, and when to call in a pro.
How Do Rats Get Into Your Home?
Before we get into how rats gain access to your home, it’s important to know the species of rats we have in the area. Here in Mississippi, you’ll generally see just two kinds of rats: roof rats and Norway rats.
As their name suggests, roof rats are great climbers. Small-bodied and wiry, they can gain access to the top of your home by using tree branches as a bridge, just like a squirrel might. Your warm, dark attic is a tempting space for them, and if there are any holes or gaps that allow them to sneak inside, they’re often small enough to squeeze through them.
Norway rats, on the other hand, are a little heavier and less inclined to climb. These larger rats will infest your home by sneaking inside at ground level. If you have space under any exterior doors, or gaps in the foundation of your home, these pests may be able to find their way in.
Once inside, rats may try to create a nest. Because roof rats tend to nest above ground, you may find them somewhere above floor level in an attic, wall, or even cabinet. Norway rats tend to nest at ground level beneath piles of wood or debris, and you’ll often find their nest in basements or the lower level of your home.
We can’t leave this topic without talking about something else: mice. If you have a rat problem, you may have a mouse problem as well, as both pests can gain access to your home in the same way.
Deer mice, house mice, and field mice are common in Mississippi. All of these can be just a few inches in length, and all of these will nest in the same small spaces rats use.
Fortunately, many of the strategies that work to remove rats work for mice as well, so keep reading to learn more.
How Can You Get Rats Out?
If you’re struggling to deal with a rat problem, you might be inclined to try repelling or killing them yourself. A few DIY methods work via natural remedies that can encourage these pests to leave, but be prepared to move on to more extensive methods for large infestations.
Add a few drops to a cup of water and put it in a spray bottle. You’ll want to spray anywhere you’ve seen evidence of rats, from possible entry points to areas where you’ve seen droppings.
The smells of most essential oils will only last a few days, so reapply as necessary.
This is a home remedy many people swear by, though you may see mixed results. Pour black pepper in the same places we mentioned above, and you just might irritate these furry pests’ nostrils enough to make them turn back.
As you might expect, these slower methods may not be the best way to get rid of rats fast, but they may help you encourage some of the pests to leave while preventing more from coming.
What Kills Rats Instantly?
If you’re not concerned about preserving the rats and you’d rather get them out fast, you’ll need to go for the kill. When you’re wondering, “What kills rats fast?” your mind may go to the classic fix: rat poison.
Not so fast. Even if you have a vendetta against these annoying pests, poison can cause more problems than it solves.
First, unless you’re using professional-grade desiccating rat poison, the rotting body will attract maggots—and even other rats! That’s in addition to the unpleasant smell of little rotting corpses.
Second, remember that rat poison is lethal for rats and other animals, and it can even make children and adults sick if ingested. In addition, rat poison is the cause of a large number of preventable animal deaths, from household pets to local wildlife.
For these reasons, we advise homeowners not to use rat poison, even in a bait box trap. If poison is needed as a last resort, leave the work to an expert.
Instead, your best bet is a little simpler: traps.
What Kind of Rat Traps Should You Use?
Though your mind may go to the traditional mousetrap, there are actually several varieties of traps you can choose from.
This is a modern variant of the tried-and-tested mousetrap. Today’s plastic version comes with a spring-loaded trap that controls two serrated parts that snap together like the jaws of a predator. Smearing a little cheese or peanut butter on the trigger will tempt rats to take a bite, and even a small amount of pressure from them will trigger the trap.
Glue traps work in much the same way that flypaper does: the sticky glue prevents rats from getting free once they’ve stepped onto it. A quality glue trap can hold even larger rats as they fight to escape.
The drawback of glue traps is that they don’t cause instant death. Instead, rats may screech as they try to get free, and they might take days to die from exhaustion or starvation.
These traps are like snap traps in that you’ll place a bit of food on the trigger to tempt rats to touch the device. But as the name suggests, electrical boxes work by sending an electric current into the rat once it’s inside, killing the animal instantly.
Because electric currents can be hazardous, we recommend not using this option in households with children or small pets.
Although they’re worth mentioning on this list, live traps don’t kill rats. Also known as “catch and release” traps, they allow you to capture rats alive. This way, you can remove rats from the house and deposit them elsewhere if you prefer.
If you’re looking for an instant kill, we recommend the classic snap traps over poison or glue traps, though electric traps may work for certain households. If you’re not sure which to choose or don’t feel comfortable dealing with the traps yourself, a professional can handle it for you.
Where Should You Lay Your Traps?
As mentioned earlier, mice and rats love small, dark spaces for nesting, and they may not feel comfortable entering spaces where they hear your family moving around. Spaces close to a food source is ideal, whether that’s a space with access to the outside world or a nest close to your pantry!
In addition to anywhere you’ve noticed signs of rats, here are a few places you should consider laying rat traps:
- Crawl spaces
- Behind and underneath kitchen appliances
- Beneath bathroom and kitchen sinks
- In closets
- In pantries and storage areas
Again, telltale signs like claw marks or rat droppings are a sure indication of where to lay down traps, but the places above may be areas your pests pass through often. Consider laying additional traps in these areas just to be thorough.
When Is It Time to Call Synergy² Pest Control?
Large infestations of rats can be problematic for homeowners—and because rats are social creatures, the chances are good that one rat isn’t alone. When you’re feeling overwhelmed by the number of rats, or if you don’t feel comfortable handling rat traps, pest control services can help.
Professional exterminators have the right equipment for the job, allowing them to eliminate your rat problem with less guesswork. Consider calling a pro to tackle your pesky rat problem, and opting for regular pest prevention services to prevent further issues.
Get Rats Out of Your Home Fast
No matter what tactic you use, it’s time to get these unwanted pests out of your home. Now that we’ve answered the question “what kills rats instantly?” it’s time for you to take the next steps. Grab your chosen remedies and start laying down traps to eliminate the rats for good!
Feel free to read more about us and decide if Synergy² is the right company for you. We have over 270 Five-Star Google reviews for pest control service in the Jackson metro area (Jackson/Madison/Brandon/Ridgeland). Check out our newest location reviews for pest control service in Jackson, MS here at Synergy² Jackson Pest Control!