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How Dangerous Can A Squirrel Really Be?

brown squirrel sitting on a branch

There are some pests we can look at and instantly determine that they are a threat. If you're seeing yellow jackets flying around your home, you know those insects need to go. If a skunk scurries across your lawn and disappears under your porch, no one has to tell you that skunks stink to have around. However, there are some pests we actually encourage to be in our yards and squirrels are one of them.

There is no doubt that squirrels are cute and, for most of us, it is cool to see a squirrel come up close to the house. A squirrel bounding along a deck railing will have you and your kids stopping to watch them through the window. You may be the type of person who likes to put food out to lure them in close. Why wouldn't you? They're fun to watch. You may even sit on your porch, deck, or in your backyard and hope to feed them from your hand. We understand, it's not like squirrels are wolves, bears, or lions. They're harmless, right?

Reasons You Don't Want Squirrels Near Your Home

  • Squirrels are wild animals and wild animals are unpredictable. If they feel threatened or are protecting their young, they can attack.
  • The more squirrels you have in your yard, the more chances you have that one of those squirrels will chew its way into your home.
  • Inside a home, a squirrel will leave feces and urine everywhere, and present a hazard to anyone who corners it.
  • If they chew through electrical wires, they can cause power outages inside a home and can also cause fires.
  • If they chew through plumbing pipes, they can cause leaks, which can eventually cause serious water damage inside your home.
  • Squirrels carry fleas, ticks, mites, and other parasites. When they get into a home, they don't usually come alone.

Are Squirrels Dangerous?

Most of the time, they aren't. That's one of the reasons we don't mind having them around. If you approach most squirrels, they'll run away. However, squirrels have been known to attack children, pets, and adults. There are many documented cases of squirrels attacking and inflicting wounds. Also, while rabies is rare for rodents, it is possible for a squirrel to carry rabies. It is also important to understand that rabies can cause squirrels to attack people. The rabies virus can make wild animals that are normally docile become aggressive and territorial.

How Do You Get Rid of Squirrels?

You don’t want to just wait for them to leave on their own; if your home offers the right elements for squirrels to happily thrive in your environment, they have no reason to leave. It can be difficult to get rid of squirrels in your attic, but it’s not impossible.

  • First, you need to locate the area where they are getting in. In these areas you can install a one-way exclusion door so that when they exit your home, they can’t get back inside.
  • You can also install cage traps on the roof and areas under eaves, but these methods are not fully effective.
  • There are also DIY chemicals and other treatments available at hardware stores, but these can be dangerous to your health and that of your family if mixed incorrectly or applied carelessly.
  • The best way to get rid of squirrels in your home is to contact the knowledgeable pest control and wildlife removal professionals at Rottler Pest & Lawn Solutions. Our wildlife management technicians can locate the areas of entry and help eliminate the squirrels within your home quickly and effectively.

We understand that it is fun to have squirrels in your yard. We're not saying you need to get rid of all those squirrels. We'd just like to encourage you to exercise caution. They can present a danger, especially if they get into your home. Always call a wildlife professional like Rottler to safely remove them when they get in. Wild animals and the parasites they can carry are a threat we should always take seriously--even when those wild animals are cute little squirrels.

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