Good humor makes all things possible.
-Charles Schultz-

With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.
-Shakespeare-The Merchant of Venice-

Friday, September 28, 2012

Oh, rats

I have long been aware that Prince Charming isn't coming to my house anytime soon.

But imagine my horror when I glanced up at the porch light this afternoon to see what Lottie was hollering about.  I am so naive, I thought I'd see one of her idiot lizards.

It was definitely not Prince Charming.
It was not a lizard.  
It was a mouse.

 Lottie had apparently chased it up the wall onto the light fixture, and from there it tried (and failed, thank my stars) to squeeze into my attic.  Nightmare alert: mice can climb stucco walls, did you know that?  Lillie and I brought the cat inside and jumped up and down and screamed tried to decide what to do.  I posted its creepy crawly picture on Facebook and asked the team for their best advice.

Among the comments was this unpleasant news.  My furry intruder is not a mouse.  
It is a rat.  

A baby rat.
Baby rats most definitely have parents, siblings and cousins.  
Google agreed that I probably have entire families of rats running around my property.  There is a lot of that nasty ivy nearby, and rats LOVE ivy.  Google says it is only a matter of time before I have rats in my walls and attic.  I recently noticed what I thought were mole hills around my house but are, apparently, rat burrows.  Maybe I'll stuff snail bait down the busiest-looking holes--I recall, way back when I lived in an old house in San Jose, whenever I scattered Snarol there would always be a few dead roof rats lying around in a day or so.   I'll go to OSH and figure out which kind of actual rat poison seems the safest for every non-rat creature in the vicinity.

I would love to imagine that this little rodent lives alone and has no friends or relations. 
Well,  I wasn't born last night. 
 Looks like there's some pest control on my agenda.

Rats are sort of the herpes of home-ownership.  
You might control them; you might not see a rat for years; but they're never really gone forever.

Have you ever had rats?


  1. We have lots of field mice, which are cute, but equally as bad to have in the house. Chewing wires and stuff. We've never had a rat --in fact, the only rats I've seen are pets. Which I don't get, although Emma's classroom has them as pets and she says they're great.

    Just be careful with the poison --you don't want your cat to eat a poisoned rat :-(

  2. I had an adorable black and white rat as a pet when I was little and she was sweet and clever. Norway rats (Google suggested that I have Norway rats) are creepy and disgusting and make me feel like I live at the dump, albeit a Norwegian dump. I'm working up my extermination plan.

  3. I read that peppermint oil (not extract, but oil) repels seems that lots of people have had success with it. Some soak cotton balls with it, undiluted, and place them in strategic places. Others mix it with water or another (cheaper) oil and spray the mixture on fences or whatever. My rats aren't deterred in the slightest, unfortunately. (But it does smell really, really good, so I spray it around my office when the air gets stale.)

  4. OH ICK! We've only had rats outside...but INSIDE! I'd be freaking...

  5. Oh man! The sight of a mouse creeping in the corners of your house really gives you the shivers, don’t you think? Ugh. Also, rats can be a threat to the plumbing system and foundation of your house. Anyway, have you thought about calling a pest management service provider? It could be a good investment for the welfare of your house, and it can give you and your family peace of mind.

    Lucile Lynch