Mice and rats often live in our homes for years without showing any signs, their small droppings often mistaken in kitchens for seeds of pieces of dirt.
Where Are Mouse Droppings Found?
Droppings are most likely to be found near food packages, in drawers or cupboards, under sinks, in hidden areas, and along rodent runways. You will find the greatest number of droppings where the rodents are nesting or feeding, so inspect the area around the new-found droppings to determine if there is still an active – or new – infestation. New droppings are dark and moist but as droppings age, they dry out and become old and gray and will easily crumble if touched.
Why Are Mouse Droppings Dangerous?
Mice are carriers of potentially diseases and bacteria. Areas of your home infested by mice will no doubt contain considerable amounts of urine, feces and saliva. Once all the mice have been removed and their continued entry prevented then it is important to clean up the mess. Mouse contamination inside cupboards, behind appliances or on top of counters can very be very dangerous stuff. It is essential that certain safety measures are observed.
Hantavirus is one of the greatest health concerns associated with mouse droppings. The virus lives inside mice feces and when disturbed can become airborne. Humans that inhale the disease are most at risk for transmission. During the cleaning process, every effort should be made to prevent stirring up harmful dusts.
What Are the Signs of Hantavirus?
Early symptoms include fatigue, fever and muscle aches, especially in the large muscle groups—thighs, hips, back, and sometimes shoulders. These symptoms are universal. There may also be headaches, dizziness, chills, and abdominal problems, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. About half of all HPS patients experience these symptoms.
Four to 10 days after the initial phase of illness, the late symptoms of HPS appear. These include coughing and shortness of breath, with the sensation of, as one survivor put it, a “…tight band around my chest and a pillow over my face” as the lungs fill with fluid. HPS can be fatal with a 38% mortality rate.
Dealing with Mouse Droppings
Because this virus that can lead to fatal pulmonary disease is invisible, odourless and colourless, we do not advise dealing with fecal material where there has been an infestation. Saliva and urine can be dangerous as well. It is strongly recommended that you contact professionals like AGS Environmental to deal with this dangerous virus containing animal waste.
CONTACT US TODAY if you suspect mouse droppings in your home.