Dealing With Rats Outside Your House

Category Rats
Rats are very much at home around people, even if we wish they would find a new home. This is a page about dealing with rats outside your house.


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July 24, 2013

Help me please. I live on 5 acres. We just moved here about 8 months ago and I have never seen so many rats. They are big rats. I parked my truck and went out about a week later to start it and it wouldn't start. I lifted the hood and a big rat was looking at me. After looking at the truck better I realized, they have been getting into my goat feed and storing it in the truck. I have been using rat poison that you use at chicken barns, but everyday I check it they have eaten all of it. I will go out every day and check the poison and it's gone what do I do what kind of poison can I use to kill them?

By Lawanna


July 25, 20131 found this helpful
Best Answer

I would use the kind of poison that gets rid of the vitamin K in their system. I am not sure what it is called.


If you have a friend with a ferret, get some of their ferret's droppings and put around so the rats can smell it. I know what kind of rats you mean, I have seen them as well.

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August 6, 20130 found this helpful
Best Answer

Get professional help fast because exterminators have poisons that the average person can't get because of the law. They know the best places to put the poison.

You have such a bad infestation you can't do it by yourself. Where are you keeping the container of goat feed? Perhaps you need to put it somewhere else. Get a rat proof (metal) container with a good locking system. Good Luck.

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October 6, 2012

What can be used to get rid of rodents (mice, rats, coons, etc.) entering your yard?

By Roxann M


October 8, 20120 found this helpful

If you don't want critters in your yard then you have to remove whatever they are feeding on. Make sure all feed that goes to animals is securely closed and that there is none laying around.


Secondly, make sure your trash can is securely closed. If they can't find food they will move on.

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August 12, 2009

I live close to woods and fields, and sometimes get rats as visitors in our home. Any ideas for how to keep them outside.

By RUTH from Rogersville, AL


August 12, 20090 found this helpful

Sounds simple enough, but get a cat. This worked for us! Make sure it's one with a good "hunting" instinct. The Humane society is overrun with both kittens this time of year & also adult cats because so many have to move out of their homes right now. I'd recommend an older cat that has a high play/hunting instinct. (read the paperwork on it's cage & also see if he/she likes to play & chase things).


I not only don't have mice or rats anymore, my yard (which was TOTALLY over-run with moles) is now mole free! I don't know if it's the smell of my cat that keeps them away or if he (the mad hunter) does.

They also have those electronic, ultra-sonic repellent things you plug into your outlets that send out a high frequency sound that humans can't hear that's supposed to keep rats & mice away. Supposedly it doesn't bother your other pets like dogs & cats, but who knows if this is really true!

Here's one (look around the prices vary):

Here's a rat Zapper (it kills the rats): (Affiliate Link)

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August 12, 20091 found this helpful

Any holes that you may have in your house, i.e., dryer vent, small hole in the sheet rock, they may have chewed into the laundry room, under the door, plug it with steel wool. That will keep them from coming back in. If you don't have small children, you can get little poison pellets, and roll them in peanut butter, leave them out in tiny plastic cups or lids wherever you may have seen the mice, the mice will eat them and die...they love peanut butter, way better than cheese!


Hope this helps, good luck!

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August 12, 20090 found this helpful

Find and plug any holes in walls of your house that they might be getting in from. Also, keep garbage neat and tidy and yard neat and tidy and free of miscellaneous stuff hanging around like old wood and old cars and such.

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August 13, 20090 found this helpful

And, of course, the obvious don't feed the birds!

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August 15, 20090 found this helpful

Rats tend to live where there are old buildings and lots of food. A general cleanup of the place might be in order. And get a cat, probably two. It takes a good big hunting cat to kill a rat. You don't want a kitten at this point.

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August 20, 20090 found this helpful

I would guess over 80% of my rat work come from people with outdoor cats around. Rats usually won't be living in the home but since it is part of their territory they will tend to investigate it looking for food or maybe a future place to nest.


Placing bait stations with proper bait in them around the perimeter of the home will help keep the population down in your area and will keep other non target animals away from the toxin. he lower the local rat population the less likely you will get a visitor.

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August 22, 20090 found this helpful

Rats love coke but can't burp. Place a small amount of coke in small bowls where you think they are every night for a few days. They will drink it up and go away to die because the co2 blows them from the inside.

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June 11, 2005

I was lying in my hammock this afternoon, and just gotten comfortable when I heard a rustling sound above me. I thought it was birds, and I looked up just in time to see a big rat run across the patio cover and down a tree! How can I get rid of rats? I have dogs that use the yard, too, and I can't do anything that will poison them.

Linda from San Diego


By guest (Guest Post)
June 12, 20050 found this helpful

I saw one in a tree at the corner of my yard, too, but blue jays scared it away. I doubt they will hang around if you have dogs.

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June 12, 20052 found this helpful

I have a rubbermaid container, with a hole in the bottom corner that is just big enough for the mice or rats to get into but small enough that my cat and my two dogs cannot get into. I put rat poison inside it in a glass casserole dish... keeps the poison in one spot and not all over the bottom of the rubbermaid container...or out the hole. The poison is the kind that has warferin in it, thins their blood and as they eat the poison their blood gets thinner and thinner. No smell to them after and I have never had the dogs do anything with the dead rat/mouse. I have mine in the garage. You could put yours near or under your patio and no one but you would know what is in the container. The rubbermaid container has a lid, easy for you to get off and refill the poison and also the rain cannot get the poison wet. Mice and rats love to crawl into things/holes and here at my acreage the container works great.


Yes, even if you have dogs, you can still have mice and/or rats.

You can also tell if the mice or rats are eating the poison...just make a mound of poison in the container and check when you open the container to see if the mound has been disturbed.

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By sandy (Guest Post)
June 13, 20051 found this helpful

i live in a condo. i have been told that rats feast on dog feces. it is the law and common sense to pick up the poop, but i know for myself, as i am handicapped) it doesnt always happen. but they doo like doo. so that is one thing you can doo is to pick it up.

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February 26, 2007

How do I get rid of rats in my backyard?



By Ellie (Guest Post)
February 28, 20070 found this helpful

Hi John. Rats like most of us are looking for shelter and food, so first, make sure there are no food scraps around and that rubbish bins are tightly sealed. Clean up any junk.. old piles of lumber, tin, or anything they can make a nest under. You could get cats or a rat terrier.. presuming you don't have these already. Be careful with baits, epsecially if you have pets of your own, or neighbours pets get access to your yard. If it's really desperate call a professional!

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By Christine (Guest Post)
February 28, 20070 found this helpful

Short of laying traps or calling an exterminator, get a cat or two. It will make a big difference.

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By bd (Guest Post)
February 28, 20070 found this helpful

Hi John,

I had this problem a year ago and now they're gone. If you feed the birds, make sure to clean up under the feeders every day and make sure no food or garbage is near any of your outside walls. Rats will travel along a wall to find food. Make sure not to put out poison that any other animal, bird, or child can get to. If you have a crawlspace, there are rat traps with bait that can be placed underneath. I think it's best to use a professional service for this to do it safely. Insist on a product that doesn't poison other animals or hawks secondarily - it is available. Within one week, I found dead rats after doing this. Good luck with getting rid of the rats!

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March 2, 20070 found this helpful

Do not ever think a cat is a match for a rat. Maybe a tiny field mouse but check with your Humane Society to see the damage a rat can do to a cat.

Call the exterminator, they will rid your yard of those pests, they did mine and I live near the river and close to many restaurants. After the exterminator's visit, the rat has not been back.

Northern Virginia

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June 14, 2017

Rats love to find families that have outside pets giving them a good source of easy to get food. Care must be taken to rid yourself of the rats without harming your rabbits, chickens, or other pets. This is a page about getting rid of rats around rabbits.


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June 12, 2017

Rats can definitely be a danger to the birds in your outdoor aviary. This is a page about keeping rats out of an outdoor aviary.

Rat Trying to Get in Aviary

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Utopia would a place where everyone had a reverence for life. An acceptance for all variations of peoples. I say 'variations' because I do not accept that there are races within the Human species, only variations on an original theme.

This acceptance would extend to most all forms of life. In Utopia, we Humans would co exist with the mountain lion, the black widow spider and the deadly black mamba, because in this paradise, we would have learned how to live along side these creatures in such a manner, they posed no threat to us.

Although we may one day know how to deal with these creatures in such a way we won't need to kill them to avoid the danger they present to we Humans, Utopia will never be. It's just a pipe dream.

Many of the Native Americans had beautiful concepts regarding 'Animal' life around them. The horse was not thought of as an animal. The horse was a brother. And when a racoon was caught and slaughtered to feed hungry children, a prayer seeking forgiveness for taking the animal's life was offered up. Beautiful concepts, all gone with the wind.
Love (accept and respect) thy neighbor

Variety truly is the spice of life. I never understood why some cultures refused to permit any outsiders into their mono cultures. Even peoples with the same lineage separate themselves into clans. Not uncommon at all with early settlers of the Ozark mountains.

"Can we all just get along" I say we can. But only when we have learned to accept that other people's customs give meaning to their lives. They don't want to be deprived of those very things that make them who they are. I live in a multi cultural neighborhood. I am glad I do. It adds variety and spice to my life. I would though, choose that the eventual blending of those different cultures come about as a natural course of events rather than any one's customs being forced on another.
The Rat Prevails

My long time neighbor is an early riser. He goes to Bojangles for a cup of coffee, brings it home and enjoys it while sitting in his back yard. His back yard adjoins the back yard of fairly new neighbors living in the next block. Sitting in his back yard gives him a front row center view. Being the inquisitive (nosy) sort, he takes full advantage of that position.

I learned from him that the new neighbor husband was running an unlicensed garage in his back yard, having no respect for local laws. I learned that the neighbor wife ran a mobile catering service. Sandwiches were prepared in the home and sold from the back of the catering truck at various industrial sites.

I also learned that unsold sandwiches were kept in the truck overnight. Before loading new sandwiches onto the truck next morning, the old sandwiches were thrown into the back yard.

My neighbor said, 'Doug, you wouldn't believe it. Sometimes I sit here in the morning and count as many as fifteen big, and I do mean 'Big', rats in their back yard. They're after those sandwiches the people throw out'.

The neighbors eventually did vacate. They chose to return to their home country. With the house empty, my inquisitive neighbor went in and looked around. He said, 'Doug, you wouldn't believe it. That house was covered with roaches. I mean 'covered'. They were everywhere on the floor. They were climbing every wall and were all over the ceiling. You just wouldn't believe it unless you saw it for yourself'.

Now, I know why those catering trucks are called Roach Coaches.
What's Mine Is Yours

Well, People, that's a lot of rats suddenly deprived of a hearty breakfast every morning. Wanting to eat just like anybody else, they set out to find food elsewhere. For a gracious lot of them, that elsewhere was Doug's place. Not a greasy spoon diner on 42nd Street, but Doug's home!

I have trapped so many rats inside my home in the past month, I have lost count. Granted, they do not frequent that coveted area I covered with boric acid, but I can't put boric acid everywhere!

A few pairs of doves like the area around my home, so I buy and distribute seed just for them. I even throw some onto bare spots in my field. That's just what I did today before setting out on a 4 hour errand.

When I returned, I looked out at the field. I thought, 'Gosh, that squirrel has a funny way of walking'. Well, Y'all, it wasn't a squirrel. It was a big rat. I'm sure it was another big rat accustomed to being fed by my departed neighbors. It had found the seed I had put out for the doves. One rat eating my bird seed. It's no big deal, forget about it, Doug. Let it go.

But wait. There seems to be a menagerie here. Squirrels coming and going. Many birds around. And that rat. What's this? The birds, even the little ones, were swooping down to peck that rat, hoping to scare it off. During all that commotion, I learned there was not just one rat. I had to get my camera. I have never seen so many rats congregating in broad daylight. Within five minutes, I had trapped two.

I use to put out traps for the occasional rat. I quit because sometimes I would get a bird. Now, I must put out traps, lots of traps. Guess I'll have to put them out at night and take them in before Sunrise. I won't harm the birds if I can help it.

To my departed neighbors: Had you had respect for our laws regarding food prepared for sale to the public, this neighborhood would not now be infested with rats. Fortunately, with all the boric acid I spread around, your roaches have not become my roaches. As for your rats: It may be your custom to tolerate rat infestations. It is not my custom. It seems you had no respect for my customs. I just wish to hell you had taken all your rats back with you!

The situation has gotten so bad, I have enlisted the help of the Councilman for my ward. The last four pictures were taken 2 days after I wrote this article.

Link: Keeping Rats And Mice Away - Part 1

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