Throughout history, rats and mice have been responsible for transmitting a number of diseases to humans, such as plague, rat bite fever, murine typhus, leptospirosis, and salmonellosis. By assisting residents in helping reduce rodent populations, the Board of Health is able to minimize the disease potential created by their presence in and around our homes. We can also help prevent damage to property that often results from rodent activity. Property damage from rodents' gnawing may range from holes in floors and walls to damaged electrical wiring that may cause a fire.
The effective reduction of rodent populations often requires homeowners and communities to work together to eliminate sources of food, water, and harborage. Food sources that often attract rodents to an area include garbage, dog food, dog feces, and bird seed. Potential harborage locations include compost piles, accumulated debris, areas along waterways, in storm or sanitary sewers, and under structures such as garages and sheds.
Things we do
- Sanitarians respond to rodent complaints filed by general public
- We conduct surveys to identify potential rodent harborage locations
- Since our sanitarians are licensed by the Ohio Dept. of Agriculture as commercial applicators, they can apply an EPA registered rodenticide when necessary to help control an identified rodent infestation
- We routinely provide rodent-proofing recommendations that may help a homeowner or tenant eliminate conditions that serve to attract and sustain rodents
- CCBH works closely with local community officials to help address property conditions that may be contributing to a rodent infestation
To help prevent or reduce rodent activity, the Board of Health offers the following recommendations:
- Properly store all garbage in sturdy containers with tight-fitting lids. In commercial settings, dumpster lids must be kept closed and drain holes must be screened or sealed.
- Store dog food and other pet food in secure containers, preferably indoors. Remove dog feces from your property as frequently as possible.
- Do not place food for birds, squirrels, etc. directly on the ground. Utilize bird feeders that minimize the spillage of seed on to the ground.
- Turn compost piles regularly and do not compost food products, such as meat, bones, fats, and oils.
- Eliminate needless debris in your yard.
- Elevate firewood at least 18 inches off of the ground. Seal off possible routes of entry to your home or garage. A rat can gain entry through an opening as small as 1/2 inch.
Joe Lynch, RS, MPH
(216) 201-2000 ext. 1241