Author: Kurt Treftz, Cascade Pest Control
The Necessity of Rodent Control
While mice and rats can cause serious damage to the structure of your home or business, they are also very dangerous to the health of you and others sharing the infested space. It doesn’t help that rodents nest and feed off of human waste, so the threat is unfortunately never far away.
Fully understanding the comprehensive threat rodents pose to the health and safety of your home and family allows you to be best prepared to defend against rodents and human diseases. It also shows the necessity for an effective, proactive rodent control plan to ensure that you are not unnecessarily infecting yourself or your loved ones.
Cascade Pest Control has 40 years of experience working with local families and businesses to provide comprehensive, regular pest and rodent control services in order to minimize the harm rats and mice can cause. Read on to learn more about the specific diseases you can contract from keeping close quarters with rodents.
What Are Common Transmittable Rodent Diseases & Viruses?
The filth and mess that rodents create when nesting in your home can be quite detrimental to your health, especially when combined with their tendency to contaminate open food sources in your pantry. Here are a few of the most common viruses and illnesses that rats and mice can cause in humans:
Hantavirus Syndrome & Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis
These viruses are spread by breathing in dust contaminated with rodent waste, or through direct contact with rodent urine or droppings. So, if a rat or mouse has nested near or in a ventilation system either in your house (or even your car), the air you are breathing could be contaminated with the Hantavirus virus.
The hantavirus has been known to be fatal, so take care to regularly maintain attics, crawl spaces, and access to air ducts in order to ensure no rodent activity is present.
Lymphocytic choriomeningitis, or LCM, is a rodent-borne viral infectious disease caused by lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV). Typically, the primary host of LCMV is the common house mouse.
From infected mice, the lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus can be transmitted after exposure to mouse urine, droppings, saliva, or nesting materials. Like many viruses, the LCMV can be introduced to humans through the nose, eyes, mouth, or broken skin.
Lymphocytic choriomeningitis is not fatal, but based on its severity, may require hospitalization, in addition to supportive treatments.
This disease is contracted by eating or drinking something contaminated with rodent urine. Leptospirosis can also be spread if it enters the body via an open cut or gets in your eyes or nose. Rats and mice that have access to your kitchen and uncontained food sources could pose this threat if not monitored.
Rodents come into contact with a multitude of bacteria in their own scavenging, so don’t leave the cleanliness of your pantry to chance: make sure open food containers are properly stored and sealed, and take note of any gnawing or debris that might signal rodent presence.
As the name implies, this disease is contracted from a bite or scratch wound from an infected rodent. It can also be spread by contact with a dead rodent or consuming food or water contaminated with their waste.
While this is contingent on the rat or mouse in question being contaminated, it is not always possible to catch the specific rodent in question to test them in order to confirm this or not. So, seeing as the symptoms can be fatal, it is better to air on the side of caution if you have been bitten and see your healthcare provider.
Even better, implementing a regular, professional, and preventative rodent control program for your space eliminates nearly all risk of putting yourself in the situation to be bitten or contaminated by a rodent.
Indirectly Transmitted Diseases
Rats and mice are known to carry a variety of mites, ticks, and fleas with them wherever they go. These insects pose numerous other risks to your health, from Lyme disease to strains of typhus.
Allowing rodents near or around the interior of your home is, in this respect, dangerous on a myriad of levels. Not only can they threaten your health, but the parasites they bring with them can do so as well. The safest and most effective, long-term solution to protecting both the structure and cleanliness of your space is to reach out to a professional pest and rodent control company.
Cascade is happy to help! Call 888-989-8979 or request a quote and get started with our services!