a mouse in a house

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The reason why it is so important to take pest control seriously is that pest infestations can be incredibly hard to get rid of, not to mention the fact that they bring health risks and property damage along with them. With pests like rodents, a small problem can quickly grow into a hazard, so it pays to know what steps you can take to spot the signs of a rodent infestation and implement protections for your Pittsburgh property.

Is It A Mouse Or A Rat?

Homes and businesses almost never find themselves with both mice and rats. These territorial rodents mark their territory and take it over quickly, so a rodent infestation is usually one or the other of these two common varieties:


  • Size: Rats are typically much larger than mice, with some species frequently growing to around a foot in length. This larger size gives them longer snouts and bigger haunches.

  • Color: Rats can come in just about any of these colors -- gray, white, black or brown -- the same colors that other common rodents are. It’s better to look for other discernible features than color to gauge what type of rodent infestation you have.

  • Ears: Rats have smaller ears than mice, which are tucked further back along their skulls and have a pinched shape.


  • Size: Mice are usually much smaller than rats, only a few inches in size at their largest. Their long tails trail behind their bodies, making their overall size a bit greater.

  • Color: Mice can be white, gray, or brown, typically with shorter, fuzzier hair than rats.

  • Ears: Mouse ears are unmistakable. Almost comically large, these big, round fleshy discs sit right atop their heads.

The Dangers Of Rodents On Your Property

Despite their differences, rats and mice can present the same harms to you and your property. All rodents have constantly growing teeth that they must file on hard surfaces in order to keep maintained. They all nest and breed quickly, and many are carriers of nasty diseases. Here are just some of the most common dangers of having either mice or rats on your property:

  • Damage: As they file their teeth, rodents cause damage to household fabrics, wood, cables, and pretty much anything else they can chew or scratch on.

  • Disease: Rodents are some of history’s worst purveyors of disease. From plagues to parasites, mice and rats can be infected with all sorts of things you don’t want to be introduced to your property.

  • Allergies: The dander that rodents carry can contribute to asthmatic attacks or allergies in some people, particularly vulnerable folks like the elderly or very young.

  • Odor: Rodents aren’t tidy and it doesn’t take long for their squalor to cause an unpleasant stink in your home or business.

Why Rodents Are So Hard To Eliminate

Even if you manage to spot a rodent -- which isn’t likely as these pests hide in the shadows and forage at night -- the task of actually eliminating their population is a tall order. For one, you have to know what solutions to apply to the problem, which requires a keen enough eye to tell what kind of rodent, specifically, has invaded. For another, you’ll have to find a treatment that not only kills the rodents you spot but also the scores of them that are thriving in the hard-to-reach corners of your property. Rodents produce and mature very quickly, meaning the cost of inaction or even improper action is a worse problem.

The Best Protection From Witt

Rather than take it upon yourself to check all the nooks and crannies that a rodent can hide in, turn to the pros who have decades of experience looking for pests. At Witt Pest Management, our thorough inspections can determine if rodents are already in your property or might soon be a problem. Then, we will tailor a solution and/or help you choose a prevention method that meets your budget and your property. 
Don’t let rodents take over your home or business, trust Witt for full protection.

Tags:  rodent control  |  home pest control  |  mice & rats  |