When I moved back home from college, the boxes I shipped back got infested with mice. One of them found its way into my bedroom and I caught it gorging on Halloween candy. We ended up catching about six more mice in the garage with sticky traps. When I moved upstairs to my own studio-type area, I got another mouse. I've had two mice up there since I have lived there. Mice aren't that big of a deal because they are small and kinda cute, but the fact that they are running around in my pantry and eating my Japanese Kit Kats pisses me off, and grosses me out.
So it didn't surprise me when one day I grabbed my BRAND NEW bag of rice, and noticed this.
Yep. Something had chewed into my bag. The thing is, though, the hole was way too big for a mouse, in my opinion. The next day, I discovered droppings in the pantry, and on the windowsill in my bathroom.
These weren't mouse droppings. They were large. Great. I had a rat running around my living space, crawling in my pantry, eating my food, and using my bathroom. That disgusted me to no end. Rats are huge and gross and carry diseases! I don't want that in my house. I knew it was somewhere in my pantry. I opened the door, and a flash of fur flew past my face. It was a lot of fur. It was definitely a rat.
So, me and Kevin did what we always did. We knew we were dealing with a rat this time, so we bought extra large sticky traps and laid one out at the bottom of the pantry, baited it with peanut butter, and went to bed. The next morning I woke up, and the sticky trap was laying in front of the pantry door. That rat bastard had pushed the trap out! In my mind I imagined him looking at the trap, scoffing, and kicking it away with his dirty little rat foot. I opened the pantry door and stuck the trap back in there and left for work. A few hours later, I get the following text from Kevin:
Clearly, we were not dealing with a stupid rat. I had no idea how clever rats actually were, and I was a bit shocked by this revelation. It turns out the rat and taken the trap and stuck it under the fridge, about eight feet away. Kevin was now taking this personally, and he wasn't fooling around.
He cleared out the boxes and laid three traps. Let's see this rat avoid three of them! For good measure, we removed all of the edible food products from the pantry and put them in a container. In our minds, the rat wouldn't have anything to eat and would have to eat the peanut butter.
Nope, the rat just ate the shelf liner. He ate my freakin' shelf liner. This mean's war.
After asking my friends on Facebook what they've done to combat rats, the general consensus was that sticky traps don't work on rats. The classic snap trap is what you need, and if that didn't work, a cage. And if that didn't work, the bucket contraption was my last resort:
So we settled on a snap trap. We laid it smack in the middle of the shelf that the rat seemed to favor, and hoped for the best. About 10 minutes after we crawled into bed and turned out the lights, we heard a snap.
I walked to the kitchen and looked through the partly opened pantry door, and saw something fuzzy and glowing.
I wasn't sure if it was dead, but Kevin opened the door and confirmed it.
Look at the size of that thing!!! This thing was running around my pantry and living space for THREE DAYS. This went on for THREE DAYS, guys. I was completely disgusted. I had told my mom after the second mouse, that if I get a third one, I'm getting a cat. This time, it was a freaking rat. A rat is a way bigger deal to me than a mouse. There was no dissuading me otherwise at this point. So a few days later, I ended up getting this thing:
Her name is Bentley, and she's pretty damn adorable. She's still a kitten (she's about six months old now), but we've been finding cockroach carcasses all over the place, so I think she's turning out to be a pretty good hunter! So next time a rat thinks that it can barge it's way into my home, I'll be ready with my adorable fuzzy murder cat.