Identifying Your Rodent Pests

Noticing that a tiny creature has been gnawing at your pantry goods, leaving excrement, or pittering and pattering around your home is the first step in identifying you have a rodent problem. But how do you know if it’s rats or mice that are living at home with you? Well, the first thing to be aware of is that mice are more curious where rats are more cautious. If you do see a rat, it could either be a Norway rat or a roof rat, which are common perpetrators of rodent problems.

Rats have poor eyesight, so they leave a trail of urine and droppings to find their way around their environment. These droppings create odor problems as well as spread diseases like salmonella. When calling Noble Way Pest Control in Sacramento, we will not only get rid of your rodents, but also clean up the excrement left behind by these pests. 

  • Norway rats – These little guys are also referred to as the sewer rat or wharf rat and tend to burrow at the lower levels of a structure. They are colorblind, but have keen hearing, smell, touch, and taste. They are very capable of running, swimming, jumping, and climbing, making them very agile. They have bristly brown fur with black hair dispersed throughout. They have small eyes and ears with a heavy body and a short tail. These kinds of rats prefer food with high carbohydrate and protein content, but they will eat almost any type of food, because, after all, beggars can’t be choosers. Norway rats leave droppings that are about ¾” and have blunt ends. New bite holes from these rats will be rough, where older bite holes are smoother from wear and are greasy.   
  • Roof rat – Also known as the black rat, these rodents are better climbers and are often found in the attics of homes and businesses. They are long and thin rodents that have large eyes and ears as well as a pointed nose and scaly tail. Roof rats prefer to eat grains, fruits, sweets, peanut butter, and nut butter, but will tend to avoid meat and fish. They are normally picky eaters due to their natural suspicion of new food in the environment, but will still usually eat what food is available in their environment. The droppings of the roof rat are ½” and pointed and are smaller than the dropping of a Norway rat. Common signs of the roof rat include gnaw marks, nests, damaged electrical wires, and noises in your attic or walls. 
  • Mice – They may look a little cuter than the other pests, but they are just as destructive and elusive. Mice are small and round with a dusty gray coat and cream-colored belly. Mice have pointed muzzles and large ears. Their size lets them enter your home through smaller spaces and they reproduce just as quickly. Mice carry the same diseases and dangers as Norway rats and roof rats, but are harder to detect due to their size. Once inside your home, mice will eat almost any human food, but prefer grain-based products. 


There are three major things that you should do to prevent rodent infestations in your home. These are:

  • Seal
  • Trap
  • Clean

Sealing can be as simple as plugging holes with steel wool or simply doing some patchwork. If you see a hole where an unwanted guest could enter through, it is best to cover it. You can also remove any nesting material from your property, like leaf piles.

While we recommend hiring a professional exterminator service to completely rid your house of rodent infestations, you can purchase several low maintenance mouse traps in the meantime to get a head start.

The last good habit to practice is to clean up any food in and around your house. Sweep food up off the floor, wipe counters of any food, and don’t leave any opened foot package or contained in your cupboards.

If you suspect that your home is infested with rodents, contact Noble Way Pest Control today. We will come and inspect your home and recommend a proper course of treatment before getting rid of these furry pests for good. Speak with a representative today to get more information about our rodent control, pest control, and bed bug control services.