It's a reality that ever pet owner has thought about. You see your dog or cat digging for something and suddenly an enormous rat defends itself by biting at your pet. When your beloved pet is bitten by a rat it's time to immediately call the vet and set up an appointment as soon as possible. This is because the numerous diseases that rats carry and that there's a much better chance that your pet will survive the encounter if you catch it early.
These diseases don't even need to be transmitted from a bite, more commonly, they spread from the mere ingestion of bacteria in the rats fur and feces. Ticks and other parasites that rats carry can also be the culprit behind the diseases.
Considering these different risks is enough to make you look at every rodent you see with a suspicious eye. Some people are naturally afraid of rodents of all shapes and sizes, and after learning about the serious diseases from rats, it's safe to say that this fear isn't without good reason.
When it comes to dealing with rats, a professionally-designed trap is the best answer. Knowing that you've put the right tools in place to counter the risk that rats pose to your pets can give you peace of mind. But much more importantly, it can potentially save an animal's life.
Here are some of the most common diseases that rats can transfer to pets that owners should watch out for.
Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, or HPS, is a highly contagious and sometimes deadly disease. It is spread when a person or animal is exposed to infected deer mice urine. It can also be carried by some species of rats including cotton rats and rice rats. Besides having a quality trapping mechanism for pest control, diligent cleanups of areas where rodents are likely nesting can do a lot to minimize the danger. Always wear gloves when disposing of dead rats and mice.
The bacteria Leptospira has the ability to infect humans and many different types of animals. Although it is most common in tropical or temperate regions, this is a disease that can happen anywhere in the world. It's difficult to always know if a pet might be infected with Leptospirosis as it sometimes presents no symptoms. In other cases, your pet might be noticeably ill and fatigued. This is another disease spread by the rodent's urine — or the urine of any of the handful of other wild and domesticated animals capable of carrying it — and animals usually encounter this infected urine when sniffing around in the dirt.
In this case, it's impossible to know where these animals' urine might be, let alone whether they're infected or not. This emphasizes the need to nip the problem in the bud by trapping the culprits head-on.
While it might sound like a thing out of ancient history, the Bubonic Plague is very much real and can pose a danger to your animals. As a result of the germ Yersinia pestis, this disease is most commonly spread by fleas. A flea will feed on an infected animal and then move on to you and your animals, thus spreading the disease to you. One of the most notable symptoms of Plague is the abscesses and sores that appear in glands of the legs and arms. This is not only a danger for a pet to get it but also for the pet to pass the Plague on to their owners.
Francisella tularensis is the germ responsible for this bacterial disease. It's most commonly seen in wild mammals, so it's an important disease to be prepared for and to avoid if at all possible. Animals are most likely to contract the disease when there's a dead, sick, or wounded animal nearby that is contaminated. A bite can also spread Tularemia, but a less expected place where it might come from is in the water or food supply for your or your pet. Raw meat can be contaminated with Tularemia as can untreated water in areas where Tularemia is common in the wildlife.
Another disease that has proliferated all over the world, the aptly named Rat-Bite Fever can indeed come from a scratch or bite when a rodent is infected. From the germ Streptobacillus moniliformis in the North American variety and Spirillum minus for the African and Asian strains, you or your pet can also just as easily contract this fever by drinking water or eating food that has been contaminated by rat feces. That's why it's just as important to keep your pet's food and water stored in a safe place as it is your own.
Named after its prevalence in monkeys, this disease can be transmitted just as easily through rodents and other small mammals. It can be transmitted through a scratch or a bite, but it can also happen when a person or animal is exposed to an infected rodent's blood or bodily fluids. There is yet to be a cure for Monkeypox, but a vaccine can dramatically reduce the risk of infection.
Keeping rats away from your pets can help keep them happy, healthy, and above all, safe. The top pick for pet owners with a rat problem is the unrivalled Goodnature A24 Rat and Mouse Trap. It's advanced and innovative design ensures that the trap traps every time and that it does so in the most quick-kill way possible. The A24 is free of toxins, and kills the rodent as instantaneously as possible so there is never any suffering involved.