5 Health Risks of Rats in the Workplace (Disney Didn’t Do Us Any Favors)

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5 Health Risks of Rats in the Workplace (Disney Didn’t Do Us Any Favors)

We get a lot of calls for Rodent Pest Control in Businesses, so I thought I would write a little blog about the Health Risks of Rodents in the Workplace.

The Rodent Health Risks on everyone’s mind is Hantavirus, but there are about 70 known diseases transmitted or carried by rodents that can endanger or even kill humans. These diseases are spread to people through contact with the feces, urine, or even through bites and scratches. Following is a list of some of the most common diseases associated with rodents (in particular, rats and mice).

Murine Typhus

This is transmitted by the fleas that infest rats. In tropical regions, it is a year-round concern, but in temperate climates, summers are what to watch for. Symptoms are flu-like and include high fever, headache, dry cough, vomiting, nausea, and joint pain.


This deadly disease is transmitted through rodent feces, urine, and saliva, usually by inhalation of contaminated dust. It can lead to cardiovascular shock and kidney failure. Death follows if not treated early. This is what killed three people in Yosemite in 2012. Prevention of Hantavirus depends on vigilant rodent control.


Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease transmitted through rat urine. Symptoms include severe headache, high fever, vomiting, yellow skin and eyes, liver and kidney failure, muscle pains, abdominal cramps, a rash, and heart ailments. Most cases of Leptospirosis end in death.


Salmonella is usually transmitted through food contaminated with animal feces. Salmonella is usually not fatal. Symptoms are stomach cramps, diarrhea, fever, and vomiting.

Rat Bite Fever

As the name implies, Rat Bite Fever is transmitted by bites and scratches from rats, and by eating food contaminated by rat droppings.

Rodent Pest Control in Businesses: PREVENTION

So, how can we help avoid contracting diseases at work? The keys are a few simple proactive measures.

Exclusion. Seal up holes outside, on the roof, and under where you work. Keep in mind rats can get through a 1″ opening, and mice only need ¼” to squeeze into a building.
Clean up outside. Remove piles of debris or storage that can be harborage or nesting sites. Keep the dumpster lids closed and keep the garbage areas clean to eliminate easy food sources.
Clean up inside regularly. Clean spills right away and store food in containers with tight lids.
Professional pest control. Regular monitoring and maintenance.

In conclusion, if you feel you need help at your workplace, know that Rocklin Pest Control Services has defined the cutting edge of rodent-proofing commercial buildings. And we employ the most advanced integrated techniques to control rodent populations in the workplace.


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