There is no doubt about it; rats are everywhere. Rats like to keep to themselves and remain hidden. This brings about multiple problems, not least that you can often hear a rat without seeing it. You may notice food going missing, chew marks in packaging, and droppings in dark places. The only thing worse than not seeing a rat is seeing one; there is nothing worse than seeing a rat scurrying across your kitchen or living room.
A good rat poison can take care of the rats for you. Having rats in your home can be a real nuisance, and they can be dangerous when cornered or frightened. Rats do not set out to harm anyone, they are mainly looking for shelter and food, but if confronted by another animal or person, they can try and fight their way out. Fighting their way out can mean bites, and that is never a good thing, for an animal or a human.
Table of Contents
- How Does Rat Poison Work ?
- Choosing the Best Rat Poison
- 4 Best Poisons on the Market
- Rat Poison Tips
- Home Remedies for Taking Care of Rats
How Does Rat Poison Work ?
There are two main types of store-bought rat poison. Anticoagulants stop blood from clotting and promote internal bleeding. Non-anticoagulants work in a different way, but there are far too many ways to describe them in a few words. Just know that non-anticoagulants do not cause rats to bleed internally.
Within these two categories, the types of rat poison can be broken down into two more categories. Single-feeding poisons will kill a rat after one feeding. Multi-feeding poisons will need a rat to feed multiple times before it will kill it. When choosing between the two, you should know that single-feed are more poisonous and toxic, while multi-feed are less poisonous and toxic.
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* Anticoagulant vs. Non-anticoagulant
Anticoagulant chemicals such as warfarin, chlorophacinone, diphacinone, difethialone, bromadiolone, and brodifacoum will cause a rat to bleed from the inside. Non-anticoagulants work in a different way.
Bromethalin affects the central nervous system. When the cells stop producing energy, they begin to swell, and pressure is put on the brain. The result is paralysis and then death
Cholecalciferol is otherwise known as vitamin D3. This vitamin helps the balance calcium in the body. Too much of this vitamin can lead to too much calcium in the blood. This affects the central nervous system, as well as the internal organs, eventually resulting in death
Zinc phosphide turns into phosphine gas when exposed to water and acid. This gas is toxic to the brain, kidneys, liver, and heart
Strychnine (a restricted toxin) produces muscle spasms in rats. Breathing paralysis and death is the result
Choosing the Best Rat Poison
There are a few things which you should think about before you purchase your rat poison (or mouse poison), things such as the size of the product, the ingredients, and the delivery system, and all things which should be considered.
Your urgency will determine your methods. If you need to get rid of rats quickly, then a store-bought rat poison is the way to go. If you do not need to get rids of rats a quickly as possible, then there are other methods (check out our home remedies later in the article). Some rat poisons will take care of your rats instantly, while others can take several days. The longer-acting poisons are designed to hit the rats hard and provide a more permanent solution to the problem. For little activity, an instant-acting poison is best. For a more widespread problem, a slower-acting poison is better.
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The amount of poison needed will depend on how big your problem is. The more rats you need to take care of, the more poison you will need.
The ingredients should not be taken lightly. If you live with small children or pets, then you should choose the least toxic poison possible, even if you are using an enclosed trap. Try to find a poison with an antidote should an animal or person consume some by mistake. Many rat poisons have an attractive smell and taste, so be careful.
The type of poison should also be considered. Some poisons are designed for rats, some are designed for mice, and some are designed for both. Make sure to read the packaging and choose a poison which will do the job you need it to.
The delivery system will depend a lot on the type of rodent you have in your house and the type of poison you are going to use. Some poisons will come with their own delivery system. Others will need a delivery system to be bought separately.
The place for the poison should also be considered. You do not want the poison to be sitting in a place which is easily accessible for children and pets, but you also need to have it in a place where the rats will consume it. You should also put it in a place which will be easy to get to should you need to dispose of a dead rat. Dead rats can be messy, so consider the placement and the route for the rats.
4 Best Poisons on the Market
There are many poisons on the market. It can be hard to know which are good and which are less effective. The hard work has been taken out of the equation for you. Here are some of the best on the market.
The main selling feature of this poison is that it is extremely toxic. This has an upside and a downside. Being one of the most poisonous rat poisons on the market, it is extremely effective in killing rats. The downside is that it can be dangerous when around pets and children. The poison comes in the form of pellets. When the rat consumes the pellets, it is gradually killed. One feeding should kill a rat though, and this poison has the power to kill multiple rats without a massive amount of poison. This poison is deadly, but it is easy to use, and it can be used on mice and rats.
Another rat poison which has a high-toxicity level. This poison comes in the form of small blocks. The great thing about this poison is that it comes with an antidote. If a child or animal does consume the anticoagulant, the antidote can be administered. Medical help should always be sought after to ensure the safety of the child or animal. This is a great poison to use in bait traps, and will generally kill rats the first time they consume the poison. The blocks are made of food grade ingredients, so the rats will be incentivized to eat the poison. A powerful rat poison with an antidote should the unthinkable happen.
Another block-type rat poison, and one which can be used to kill rats and mice. The main selling feature of this poison is that it is so fast-acting, that rats will not have time to get back to their hiding place before the poison kicks in. You will need to use this poison with a bait station. The bait station holds the bait in place and does not allow a rat to take the poison back to its home. You want to be able to dispose of the rat and not let it get into your walls or under your floorboards.
Another effective poison for both rats and mice. The main selling feature of this poison is that it has been specially designed to be an attractive food source for mice and rats. The poison tastes great to rats, but also has hard ridges, making it hard to eat a lot. They eat just enough to kill them, without a lot going to waste. You will want to use a bait station for this poison and always try and put it in a place where rats can get to easily but have a hard time getting back to cover once they have consumed it. Always use gloves, to both protect your skin from the poison, and so that you do not transfer your scent to the poison (which could scare the rats away).
Rat Poison Tips
Handling rat poison is not a task to be taken lightly because it is dangerous and can be lethal to humans and animals. You should take some steps to ensure your own safety as well as that of others. Here are some simple tips you can follow to ensure that you remain safe.
Store poison safely when you are not using it. Rat poison should be in a sealed container and kept out of reach of children. If you can store the poison behind a locked door, then all the batter. The poison should not be stored near food or water, or water sources. Do not keep the poison in any place where there is a chance of contamination
Traps and bait should be placed where children or pets will not access them. The traps should be in a place where the rats can get to them, but the safety of your household should be the top priority
When handling bait, you should always wear gloves. This stops any of the poison transferring to your skin and other areas of your body. It also stops your scent from being transferred to the bait, which can scare rats away. You should always wash your hands thoroughly after handling bait, to ensure that no poison is left on your skin
If an animal or child eats some of the poison, you should use an antidote immediately if the poison comes with one, and you should also consult a medical professional immediately
If an animal consumes a dead rat or mouse, which has been poisoned, then you should consult a vet immediately
If you are hesitant about using poison, then there are other alternatives out there.
Home Remedies for Taking Care of Rats
Mothballs can be used to deter rats. Placing them in attics or basements can help to keep rats away. Be careful, though, as they can be harmful to humans. The smell itself is harmful, so place them in areas which rats are using, but not in areas where humans are.
Peppermint oil will also deter rats. They detest the smell of peppermint oil and will not go near it. You can take some cotton and dip it in peppermint oil, placing it in areas where rats are in your house. The great thing about using peppermint oil is that it is not harmful to humans and can actually be an attractive smell to have around your house. A great long-term solution is to plant mint plants around your house to deter the rats.
You can also use other natural remedies. The smell of pepper makes it hard for rats to breath. Rats are put off by the pungent smell of onions. Rats will also eat bay leaves, which will lead to their death.
If you want to strike fear into the hearts of the tiny beasts, then you can use human hair or an owl feather. The sight of these will deter rats from entering.
Using materials such as steel wool and foil to plug holes will make it impossible for rats to enter. Even if they can smell food inside, they cannot bite their way through the metallic materials.
There are many ways to take care of rats. Traps will work but are time consuming, and you have to check them regularly to empty them and reset them. They also have the downside of only being able to hold so many rats. They also take care of rats as they enter and do nothing about the source.
Natural remedies work but are just not as potent as rat poison. Poison is the most effective method of ridding a lot of rats in a short period of time, and if you handle the poison correctly, then you will also be able to dispose of rats safely.
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