When most people think of squirrels, they think of cute, fuzzy animals that are totally harmless. While this might be the case outdoors, if you have squirrels in the attic, it’s a whole different story.
Squirrels have sharp teeth and are always gnawing and chewing on things. This means they can cause damage in your home, chew up electrical wires, and even transmit diseases. They’ve been known to carry rabies, and in July of 2020, Colorado health officials confirmed that a squirrel tested positive for the bubonic plague!
While it’s unlikely you’ll get the plague from a squirrel, getting squirrels out of the attic is still a good idea.
If you’re wondering whether you have squirrels in your attic, then you’re in the right place. Here are a few common signs of attic rodents.
1. Unusual Noises
Squirrels are larger than many other common household pests, so you can expect them to make quite a bit of noise when they’re romping around in your attic. They’re most active in the early morning and at dusk, so if you hear scampering above your head or in the walls around these times, you might need to start thinking about squirrel removal.
Squirrels will make the most noise when they’re building their nests. Once they settle in and get more comfortable, they might quiet down some, but don’t make the mistake of thinking this means they’re gone.
If you hear scratching sounds in your walls, this could be a sign that the squirrel has gotten stuck. This is a problem because it could die in there, which will lead to much bigger issues.
2. Damage in Your Home
When they’re looking for warmth and shelter, squirrels will chew up just about everything. If you think you might have squirrels in the attic, head up there and take a look around.
Chew marks on your wires, molding, beams, or entryways are a good sign that you’ve got a squirrel problem. If you’ve got storage boxes in your attic, check them for chew marks as well.
3. Presence of Nests
Squirrels will also chew up your insulation and pull in leaves and twigs to make their nests. Look for destroyed or ruffled insulation and other signs of nest building. If you notice a nest in your attic, then you need to contact a squirrel control expert.
4. Foul Odors
When squirrels are living in your home, they don’t go outdoors to do their business. Eventually, you’ll start to smell their urine and droppings as the odor permeates through the walls and your heating and cooling vents.
You may also notice water spots on your ceilings. While it’s normal to assume this is water damage, it could be a buildup of urine from your new squirrel roommates.
If you catch this quickly, you can usually fix it with some plaster. However, leaving it for too long could result in you having to tear out drywall, which will cost you a lot more.
Is there a really foul smell coming from somewhere in your home? Sometimes, squirrels can die in your attic and/or walls. This will create a different kind of foul odor that you’ll find very hard to ignore.
Another sure sign of a squirrel infestation is the presence of scattered droppings in and around your roof and attic. There’s a good chance you’ll see this before you smell it.
Be very careful if you come across droppings. Squirrels can carry zoonotic diseases, which can be passed to humans. If you breathe dust that has been in contact with squirrel droppings, you could be exposing yourself to things like salmonella and Lyme disease.
Rather than try to clean this up on your own, contact a professional who can trap and humanely remove the squirrels and help with safe clean-up.
6. Holes in Your Siding
Squirrels often enter your home through holes in your siding, soffits, or vents. Each spring and fall, it’s a good idea to inspect the outside of your home. If you notice a crack or hole in your siding, there’s a good chance that a squirrel or other type of rodent has worked itself into your attic.
If you’ve noticed any of the other signs of squirrels in the attic, don’t block off these holes immediately. Doing so will either trap them inside, where they’ll likely panic and do more damage to your home or eventually die, creating odors and other serious problems, or trap them outside where they could be separated from their babies.
Squirrels love acorns and often gather them up during the summer and fall so they have them available for the colder seasons. If you’ve noticed a stockpile of acorns in your attic, you can bet they didn’t get there by themselves. This is a surefire sign that it’s time to reach out to a professional to help you with squirrel removal.
Have Squirrels in the Attic? We Can Help
If some of these signs sound familiar, there’s a good chance that you have squirrels in the attic. Don’t panic though; we can help!
While eliminating squirrels from your home is not a DIY project, a professional can take care of the problem quickly and easily.
Elevate Pest Control will take care of all your residential and commercial pest control needs, including humane squirrel removal. Contact us today to discuss your pest control issue and learn more about how we can solve them for you.