Getting Rid of Rats

Rats and other rodents can spread diseases directly or indirectly to people so it's important to eliminate rat infestations. They are a community issue, not an individual problem. Everyone must do their part. There are three basic steps to keep rats away from your property and your community:

  • Don't feed them

  • Don't give them a place to live

  • Contact pest control professionals 

Basic Information about Rats

Diseases can be spread directly to people through the handling of rats and through contact with their feces, urine, saliva, or bites. In addition, diseases carried by rats can also be spread indirectly to people through ticks, mites or fleas that have fed on an infected rats.

Rat Hot Spots

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Burrow holes that are 1.5 to 3 inches in diameter alongside walls and foundation, below shrubs, wood piles, sheds or other areas that provide shelter.
  • Grease tracks alongside walls, runways in grass or underneath fences, or gnaw marks on surfaces.

  • Don’t feed them. Get rid of or secure all food sources, Including trash, dog poop, pet/bird food, and vegetable gardens
  • Don’t give them a place to live. Rats prefer to dig their burrows under cover of overgrown plants, brush piles and debris.
  • Don’t let them move inside. Seal all possible points of entry with silicone caulk or other hard materials.  Check gaps under doors.

  • Contact a pest control professional for best results.
  • If you try yourself, only use traps designed for rats and keep all traps and poisons away from areas where pets and children can access them. Follow all directions on the label.
  • To dispose of dead rats, wear disposable gloves, use a shovel to put the rat in a garbage bag and tightly seal, and dispose of in the trash.
  • Make sure to clean up infested areas to prevent attracting more rodents by following CDC guidelines at

  • Contact Franklin County Public Health
  • (614)525-4762
  • Complete an online form