Rat Bites: Dangers, Symptoms & Prevention

Rats are commonly found wherever humans live, especially in communities with robust sewer systems. The rodents have prominent front teeth that are powerful enough to bite through wood, aluminum, and concrete. Wild rats are not use to human contact and will bite when handled or when people attempt to feed them by hand. The nocturnal creatures have also been known to bite sleeping people, particularly children and infants, on exposed body parts such as fingers, hands, toes and the face when foraging for food.

Symptoms & Dangers of Rat Bites

Immediate symptoms of rat bites include pain, redness, and even bleeding. Rats' incisors are strong and usually break skin. In these cases, humans are at risk of contracting serious illnesses such as typhus, leptospirosis, plague, and rat-bite fever. Symptoms of rat-bite fever can occur anywhere between three days and three weeks after the initial bite, even after the wound appears to have healed. Symptoms include fever, nausea, headache, sore muscles, aching joints, and bumpy rashes on hands and feet. The disease is usually treated with antibiotics, like penicillin, but can lead to deadly side effects like meningitis, pneumonia, heart problems, and abscesses of the internal organs if medical attention is not sought.

Prevention Rat Bites

The best way to protect yourself and your family from rat bites is to eliminate rat infestations as soon as they appear. Never approach, feed, or attempt to grab wild rats. Residents who have detected the presence of rats in or around their homes should contact the wildlife removal experts at Critter Control to eradicate the rodents.