Rats are more often seen scurrying away from human contact than running towards it. The reason for this is probably self-preservation. Just as no other animal would run towards an animal that they identify as a predator, rats are skittish of humans. Urban rats are far more inclined to approach humans if they think that they may be rewarded with food. Even though they have become used to humans encroaching on their natural habitat, they are still not comfortable cohabiting with us.
Do they really hide?
Many people may think that rats hide from humans. The truth is that rats are nocturnal creatures who are more likely to be spotted outside at night. This is typically the time when most humans are making their way indoors. Thus, it can appear as if rats are hiding from us. Rats are very adaptable creatures. If they live in an area with a lot of human traffic at night, like restaurants and clubs, they will find a way to circumvent this. If they are hungry enough, they will also make their way outside during the day.
Do I have rats?
Even though most rats will try to avoid being seen, there are still some ways to identify whether or not there is a rat in your home.
- Rat droppings are a sure-fire way to detect rats. If you find rat droppings in your home the chances are that they are hiding somewhere.
- Holes. Rats are able to enter through openings the size of a dime. This means that even the most inconspicuous hole may be allowing them entry. On closer inspection, some of the holes will have gnawing marks around the edges.
- Sounds. Even though rats are relatively small in stature, you will still be able to hear them if they live inside your home. The scurrying of their feet above your head or inside your walls will alert you to their activity.
- Flickering lights and alliances that cut out. Rats often chew on electrical wiring while they are gnawing on wooden beams. This leads to malfunctioning electronics.
- Gnaw marks on your food. It is disturbing to think that rats may have been chewing on your food. However, it does happen. If they have found a way into your pantry, they will certainly be looking for a way to reach your cereals. This includes chewing right through the cardboard box.
- Dark, oily smudges on your walls. Rats transfer an oily substance to walls when they rub up against it. If you have some unexplained smudges, you might need to start looking for a rat that is hiding somewhere.
Getting rid of them
Even if you don’t see them during the day, having rats in your home are not ideal. If you want to keep them from becoming a problem, it is advisable to close all openings in the façade of your own that they can exploit. You should also remove any traces of food that is freely available to them. Make sure that there is no exposed garbage and clean your kitchen after use.