Don't Use Poison.
We do not advise using poison to get rid of rats, especially in a residential building that also is home to other animals, including pets, children or the elderly, or those who are suffering with an existing medical condition.
You have no guaranteed outcome when using rodenticides, and you definitely have no control over where the rat or rat carcasses end up. In fact, what you might end up doing when you use poison to get rid of rats is create a bunch of mini walking time bombs. Why? Because growing immunity to rodenticides among rats has resulted in rat predators consuming carcasses that contain excessively high levels of rodenticides. Even seemingly fit and well — alive — rats can have many times the amount of rat poison in the body that would usually kill them off. Natural predators of rats include birds of prey, coyotes, foxes, wolves, raccoons, opossums, snakes, etc. These animals are all in grave danger. We have seen countless cases of wildlife being killed off — a direct cause of secondary rat poisoning.
21 Tips for Using Poison
If you want to use rat poison in your home, below are 21 important tips that you should know, to ensure that you are using it effectively, safely, and without killing anything off by accident:
If rats aren’t going for your snap traps or poison boxes, you may need to go through a lengthy pre-process. This will include putting the bait boxes down without poison to begin with, and without food too. The idea is to allow the rats to acclimatize to the new object in their surroundings. After a while, add some food to the mix. This will encourage the rats to clamber in and out of the poison box, taking the food freely, without anything untoward happening. Rats tend to take a bit of food, test the waters, and then go back for more if it seems safe enough and tasty enough. That’s why poison doesn’t work for rats in a lot of cases — they won’t like what they taste or feel some effects (rare) and won’t go back for more. If you incorporate other foods in — without poison — the rats will become more comfortable with taking food when it does contain poison … Hopefully.
So . . .
Think about it; $20-30 for poison, replenishing every few weeks, doesn’t work, repeat process for 6 months or so … ? The figures soon start rising, don’t they? That’s before you think about the kind of damage that the rat colony will have caused in the time you have let them stay in your home, and the cost of repairing that damage.
What to Do When Rats Don’t Eat Poison
Isn’t it frustrating when you finally make your mind up about a method of rat extermination and control, only for it then not to work when you put your plan into action? This is the reality faced by homeowners up and down the country on a daily basis, with rats getting smarter, shrewder, fearless, and seemingly more acrobatic as the years roll by.
When you’re using a chemical-based rat control approach, you want it to work as quickly as possible. The longer you have poison lying around the building, the higher the chance that something will go wrong — a kid will become curious about the item and get closer to learn more, or a pet gets close enough to take a sniff … and maybe a lick.
What happens when you use poison and it doesn’t seem to work? What should you do then?
Find another method of rat removal and control. We do not use poisons when removing rats from commercial or residential buildings. We don’t recommend using poison to get rid of rodents, either. You could try your hand at snap traps — these will kill rodents more effectively than poison and are slightly more foolproof. (It must still be remembered that there is no 100% guaranteed way to prevent any wild animal from getting into your home. Only sealing your home so that nothing can penetrate can bring you close to rat-proof.)
Move the poison boxes around. If you have put bait/poison down along a wall that rats wouldn’t normally run along, they won’t go anywhere near it. You must remember that your home is filled with potential food sources, so missing out on just that one won’t be the biggest deal in the world.
Change the bait/poison and/or placement of poison and then try again. Bait isn’t usually that important for rats; they’ll eat anything. You shouldn’t leave poison out for longer than around three or four weeks, though. It will start to lose effectiveness and when you do finally find a place that encourages the rats to eat from it, it won’t have the opportunity to work as well.
How will I know if rat poison is working?
There will be dead rats hanging around to start with, or a bad smell that could be caused by decomposing rat carcasses. This doesn’t always mean that those rats have died as a direct result of your poison, however.
Poison is usually dyed with a certain color, such as orange or green. This will change the color of rat feces — it will have a slightly orange or green tinge to it if it eats enough of the poison. If you can see that the rat feces has changed color slightly (but don’t get too close) but they still aren’t dying, there is a chance that you are experiencing rats with a high immunity to rodenticide. It’s a growing problem and yet another reason why relying on poison is simply not a good idea.
You will also more than likely notice that the poison amount has gone down in the bait box. This isn’t always a sign that rats have eaten it, however; other animals, including pets, may have eaten it.