Having pests living within your home is something that most people would prefer not to think about, but unfortunately many homeowners will be faced with this reality at some point in time. For some pests such as insects, there is no choice but to kill them in order to remove them entirely from your home. For others, such as mice, squirrels, and other critters that make their way inside, there are many options for either killing, or more humanely, trapping, them to prevent them from making your home, their home.
First and foremost, you must consider the people living in your home; pests carry all types of diseases and threats to your family. They can also pose the threat of chewing through electrical wires, creating an opportunity to spark a fire, putting you, your family, your pets, and all of your possessions at risk. Once you have identified a pest problem, you must consider the many ways to eliminate it, while also protecting your family.
When identifying an infestation of bugs, a bug bomb or fogger may be a good way to kill the offending critters, allows for one large clean up, and then your family can return to their day-to-day lives. For occasional problems, such as ants in the summer, if you are worried about your pets or children playing with ant traps, leave out the poisonous ant bait overnight. This type of trap sees the ants remove the poison, and bring it back to their colony, and within a few days, kills all of the ants, eliminating the problem.
When it comes to larger pests such as mice or chipmunks, knowing how to eliminate the problem becomes much more complicated. For those not squeamish, or not bothered by the thought of killing a pest, mouse traps are a way to eliminate a problem, but require the handling of the dead mouse or rat. Mice are carriers of Hantavirus and Salmonella, so leaving them in your walls, along with the potential fire hazard, is not a viable option.
Mouse traps are effective for eliminating a single mouse at a time, they must be placed where the mice are, and they must be taken care of after they have caught a critter. One of the best mousetraps on the market is the Kness Snap-E Mousetrap which uses smart engineering to ensure a high killing efficiency. But, in order to eliminate a pest infestation, regardless if they are rodents or bugs, it is important to find where it is they are making their way into your home, so that the area can be repaired. Is there a small hole in a vent, is there a crack in the foundation, or a broken pane of glass in an attic or basement window allowing pests of any size or variety to gain entrance into your house?
Once their point of entry has been found, and fixed, next you must deal with the pests already inside the home. Along with mousetraps, which are a quicker and more humane way to kill a rodent, there are poisons and sticky traps that can eliminate a rodent problem. Using poison is a quick way to kill rodents, but pose serious risks. Poison is, obviously, deadly; if one of your pets, or one of your neighbors pets, ingest the poison, it will be a very painful death, and devastating to the family. Similarly, if using poison, if your children, or a neighborhood child were to get into the poison, it could seriously injure or kill a child. Along with these risks, there are serious environmental risks to the environment that should be considered before utilizing poison.
Sticky traps are another alternative to poison and mousetraps. They are a thick paper with a sticky film on top that the rodents can walk onto, but cannot get off of. This leaves them to dehydrate, and die what is a very slow death of starvation and dehydration. Just like using mousetraps, using sticky traps require the homeowner to handle the dead rodent, which may be too much of an “ew” factor for some.
If killing the rodent is what you are most comfortable with, the most humane, and the best way, regardless of it’s negatives, would be the old fashioned mouse trap. Just ensure that they are kept outside of the reach of children and pets. Or invest is a more expensive, but safer, electronic rat trap, such as the Victor Electronic Rat Trap. A no-touch, no-see trapping experience, it utilizes batteries to offer an electric shock that kills the mouse or rat in less than three seconds, and without the potential failure of a traditional mouse trap, that may just injure the rodent, forcing you to kill it. Once dead, the mouse is dropped into the collection drawer, resulting in easy clean up. For households with children or pets, if the trap is tampered with in any way, it automatically shuts off the electric, ensuring only the rodents it is intended for are harmed.
For those that would rather trap, instead of kill, a rodent, you first need to find the point of entry into the house and seal it, so that no more rodents or pests can get into the house. When choosing to live trap, it is necessary to ensure that there is food, water, and nesting material available to the rodents that are caught and the traps must be routinely checked. One such trap is the Mouse Cube, which is sold in multi-packs, and is both inexpensive, and does not require any handling of the mice. For larger rodents such as squirrels, humane traps need to be large enough to not close on their tails, and it is even more important to find where exactly they were entering into the house from. Havahart offers dozens of humane traps as well as repellents and deterrents for those looking to trap, rather than kill. With solutions for nearly every type of pest from the armadillo, and mole to the muskrat, and snake, there are humane solutions for every critter that may be making your home their home.
Finally, there is a third option, for those looking to prevent a situations that would require the trapping or killing of rodents, and for those already with rodents in their homes. Known as Fresh Cab, it was approved by the EPA as a safe and effective plant-based rodent repellent. Fresh Cab comes in pouches that you can place around your home, office, and garage. They are all natural and safe for children and pets. While they need to be replaced every 90 days, they are a safer and less offensive means of preventing a rodent problem. In homes or offices already experiencing a rodent infestation, multiple pouches should be used within each room, and replaced each month, until the rodents have vacated the property.