December 2009 Archives

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Aloha,

I have a dead rat in the refrigerator. We have looked under and behind and removed tile under appliance but cannot locate it. We think it is probably in the motor housing or up inside some insulation. We can’t lay the refrigerator down without causing damage due to it’s design and size. This is a new appliance. Do you have any suggestions on how to control the terrible odor?

Thanks

Rats and mice will many times seek out tight places to hide. Motor housings and the surrounding environment are prime locations and as the cold of winter sets in, rodents will come inside looking for these exact locations. They generally offer warmth and moisture as well as a secure location to keep them protected from predators and the harsh season outside. These same locations also have a lot of hazards including electrical and mechanical parts which can end a small rodents life abruptly.

When rats or mice die in an appliance such as a refrigerator, a bad odor will usually alert the homeowner of it’s presence. At that point the dead rodent should be found and removed. If it cannot be found and removed, treating the motor and other components of the appliance can be done with some NNZ ODOR NEUTRALIZER. This product can be sprayed lightly over the housing, compartment and surrounding area. With any luck it will trickle down into key voids or spaces where the dead animal is nestled. Expect to repeat treatments daily till the carcass is decomposed.

If you have other rodent questions, consult our online RAT CONTROL ARTICLE or call us troll free at 1-800-877-7290.

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Hi,
I am not able to have rodent repellent shipped out here to California so I am in the process of receiving granule repellent for cats and dogs. Is this gonna work on rats? And can Ropel be sprayed on fan belts in cars?  Am having problems with rodents in car engine.

Thank You, T.T.

ROPEL can be used on anything. The only issue we’ve seen is some discoloration when treating certain fabrics. I don’t think this will be of any concern when treating under the hood of a car and over the years we’ve had people use it successfully to stop rats, mice and squirrels from chewing on their vehicles.

Another option is to set out a LIVE TRAP under the vehicle. Small animals are easy to catch and once trapped, you can relocate them far away so they can’t access your vehicle anymore.

Lastly, another great option is the TRANSONIC PRO ULTRA SOUND. It’s got variable settings and works well on both rats and mice. Install one set up with a timer as described in the following video and I’m sure you’ll be able to keep them away.

 

Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:

Ropel:  http://www.bugspraycart.com/repellents/liquid/ropel-liquid

Live Trap:  http://www.bugspraycart.com/traps/cage/live-trap-5-x-5-x-18

Transonic:  http://www.bugspraycart.com/repellents/sound/usd-transonic-tx-pro

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Firefighters say rodents may be the reason a fire broke out Thursday morning in Chico.  The fire was called in by a neighbor around 7:45 AM after they saw smoke and flames coming from the upper level of the home.  The resident told firefighters he heard a scurrying noise in the attic a few hours earlier, around 1:30 in the morning, and then the power went out.   Roof rats, squirrels and mice will commonly chew power lines so it wouldn’t be a surprise if they indirectly caused a short.

The homeowner apparently didn’t realize the danger and just reset the circuit breaker. About 6 hours later the fire broke out. You can read the full the story here:

ATTIC FIRE CAUSED BY RODENTS?

In fact, rodents regularly chew on pipes, wires and just about anything attempting to grind down their teeth. As explained in our ROOF RAT CONTROL article, they do this instinctively. This is just one more reason why roof rats should not be tolerated in or around the home. Be sure to trap out local populations if you find them in or on your house using one of the methods detailed in our article.

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I found your info very useful.  I’m wondering, are cats helpful in scaring away rodents that are inside a house?

Great question! No doubt lots of people believe this to be the case. But is there any scientific research or testing to confirm or dispel this widespread urban legend? Not that we’re aware of. However, we’ve done a little research on our own… And the results may surprise you!

First, one would think cats to be natural “ratters”. It’s common for cats to kill, retrieve and drag around small animals like mice, birds, lizards, rats, chipmunks and squirrels. But do all cats display this behavior? That would be a definite no. And what % of cats do? Anyone’s guess. I think most don’t have the chance to show they’re capable of doing it and even the few that do aren’t nearly as effective as their owners would like to think.

Which leads me to my next point. Most people who have pets like a dog or cat that routinely retrieve small animals are quick to point out their animal does this all the time. In these situations it becomes clear their pet is sometimes finding animals in their domain. In other words, for house cats that don’t go outside, the rodents are clearly coming inside. And many times the cats are able to get their “prizes” several times a week. This leads us to believe the rodents are “co existing” with the predatory cat or dog. Seemingly they don’t care! And for pets that venture off their land to seek their prey; we have found many of these pet owners to have an ongoing active rodent problem! In other words, we have customers that come to us confused because their pet hunts small animals yet they know they have a rodent infestation and can’t understand how this could be.

All this mixed data leads us to believe that cats and dogs can and will hunt small animals. But once they became domesticated, this hunting behavior became something they didn’t need to use to live or survive. That means it will be “fleeting” at best and not done to the level needed to provide true rodent control or pest elimination. And since we’ve seen case after case of rodents co existing with both dogs and cats that either don’t care or do kill some of the unwanted small animals found in their domain, in neither case do the rats or mice active seem to care. In other words, the pet doesn’t seem to deter or frighten the rodent away. Which explains why more than 50% of our customers with rodent problems own pets! One would think the two might be directly related but I’m pretty sure the relationship is more of a related “interest”. And this interest seems to be food.

No doubt pet food (in all forms) is more of a rodent attractor than the pets are a rodent repeller. This we are 100% sure and base it upon 30+ years of data. As explained in our ROOF RAT CONTROL ARTICLE, pet food is very nutritious and will attract rodents from far away. So to answer your question, I’m 100% there are some cats that can “scare away rodents that are inside a house”. But do all cats scare rodents and are all cats even interested? No way. And are all rodents afraid of cats or other pets? Nope. In fact, it seems as though they are able to gauge whether they should be frightened or not and when they detect a pet that might pose a hazard to them, the rodent will many times avoid the pet but still use the structure to some degree for either food or shelter. So even “rodent hunting pets” – or at least pets that show this trait strong enough to alert rodents to the fact they could be in trouble for hanging around – aren’t able to keep rats or mice away for sure. In the end, this glaring fact means that if wish to keep your property and house rodent free, you’d best follow the guidelines and practices outlined in our rodent control article. Hope this answers your question!!