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Why Are People More Scared of Rats Compared to Mice?

Posted on Apr 30, 2015 5:00:00 AM by Fran Oneto

Why Are People More Scared of Rats Compared to Mice? | San Joaquin Pest ControlIf you have a fear of rodents, you probably prefer not to encounter any of them, no matter the type. But if you had to rank your fears, it’s a good bet that a rat would rank higher on the “things that make you scream” scale than a mouse. It seems that most people have a much greater fear of rats than mice, and probably for good reason. So what is that reason?

First of all, rats just look more frightening. Compared to a mouse, a rat is a monster of a rodent. In fact, a rat can grow up to one foot in length, not including their tail. Mice are incredibly small in comparison, so thus, not very scary to most people.

Not only are rats much bigger than mice, but they are also much more aggressive. Mice tend to fear people and run anytime they see them. If cornered, it’s highly unlikely that they would strike out. A rat, on the other hand, will certainly become aggressive if they feel threatened. If you happen to find a rat in your home, don’t attempt to catch it bare handed – it will bite if it feels cornered.

Since rats have been known to bite, this makes it even more frightening that they are also known to carry disease. Rat bites and scratches may result in disease such as lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCMV), which is a viral infectious disease, salmonellosis, or even rat-bite fever. Their urine is known to spread leptospirosis, which may lead to liver and kidney damage. Not only that, but rats are also a potential cause of allergens. Their dander, hair, and droppings may cause allergic reactions in some people.

It is important to note that mice, as well as rats, have been known to transmit hantavirus. Hantavirus is incredibly dangerous, and may result in difficulty breathing and can even become fatal if not treated. The virus is transmitted to humans when they inhale airborne particles from rodent droppings, urine or carcasses. It is incredibly important to remove all feces, nest materials and dead rodents from your home as quickly as possible to avoid hantavirus. It’s often in your best interest to contact a pest control professional to remove all traces of a rat or mouse infestation for your safety.

Rats and mice can both be destructive when they infest your home, although rats are much more so. However, rats will gnaw through plastic and wood, leaving holes throughout your home in walls, floorboards, and any other material they can get their teeth on. They contaminate every inch of your home through urine, droppings, and saliva, and can ruin a food supply very quickly. If you have even the slightest suspicion that you may have even one rat in your home, it’s important to move quickly and take care of the issue right away. A full-blown rat infestation can be a nightmare to deal with. Since rats are aggressive and can be dangerous, dealing with them on your own is not advised. A professional exterminator will have the knowledge and ability to take care of your infestation the safest and most efficient way possible.

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