Sometimes it may be hard to establish whether there are rats in your space but a sighting of rat poop is a sure way of telling that this rodent has found a home in your house. Most people tend to confuse rat and mouse poop but the two are distinctly different. Mouse poop is much smaller with pointy ends and the size of a rice grain. Rat poop on the other hand is much rounder and fatter with more volume and rounded edges.
Unfortunately, rats defecate wherever they want indiscriminately. This means no space is safe from these hideous creatures. The droppings are usually black in color turning a dull black with time. When fresh the droppings are extremely black so you can tell if the rat infestation is current on an old one.
Health risks from rat poop
During the winter months when rats can find their way into your house you have to deal with their poop in addition to their unwanted presence. The rats will defecate where they find food like in a cupboard or pantry. Their fecal matter can spread disease causing bacteria not to mention contaminate your food that is stored in those areas. Plus they can trigger an allergic reaction in human beings once the feceas become dry and can be breathed in. Here are some diseases associated with rats and their poop:
The bubonic plague
This disease is lethal and feared because it is highly contagious and can decimate entire populations. In the middle ages it wiped out a third of the European population at the time. It is famously known as the Black Death. Symptoms include headache, fever and swollen lymph nodes that are painful to touch.
This is a life threatening disease spread when people inhale or come into contact with an infected rat’s droppings, urine or even saliva. People get headaches, dizzy spells and abdominal issues.
Salmonella is spread when human beings come into contact with the fecal matter of rats through food. Unfortunately, it is possible to ingest food that has been contaminated by rat poop especially if you leave your food open during a rat infestation. In the US, there are roughly 40,000 cases of salmonella reported because of contamination of food with rat and other rodent poop.
How to mitigate rat poop
You can prevent the contamination of your food with rat poop by preventing rats from entering your home in the first place. This is the first line of defense against these rodents. If you have an infestation, call a professional to set traps and get rid of the rats for you.
Make sure to lean the areas where you notice rat poop thoroughly. Wear latex gloves when cleaning rat urine or poop to avoid contaminating your hands.Spray the area with disinfect and or pour water with bleach and let the area soak for a few minutes to loosen the poop and also to sterilize the space. Use a paper towel, not your regular kitchen cloth, to wipe away the poop and urine. Keep repeating this process until the area is completely cleaned and disinfected.