Stacked hay in agricultural stall at farmhouse

Rats Call Horse Barns Home

Horses are beautiful animals. In Morris County, when you drive through the country and see these majestic creatures grazing in a field, it is an amazing sight.

When the horses are brought in from the field they reside in a horse stall. This is where they are not so beautiful. The horses eat, sleep, and go to the bathroom in their stall. Horses are messy eaters, and the feed they spill while eating creates an excellent source of food for rats. The stalls are also a great place for rats to hide and nest. There are food and shelter inside a stall. Rats readily co-habitat with horses. The most common rat found at farms in Morris, Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren counties is the Norway Rat. These rats live in the ground in burrows. These rat burrows can be found in horse stalls and adjacent areas. The reason why they live in these areas is because there is a lot of food.

How Do I Treat Rats?

Treating rats in this environment can be challenging. Since there is a lot of food available rat baits are not very effective. Think about it, if you were a rat would you eat rat bait or tasty horse feed. We use some rat baits but we primarily use a powdered rodenticide. This powdered rodenticide is applied directly into the rat’s burrow. The reason why the powdered rodenticide works so well is rats are very clean creatures. They are constantly grooming themselves. Put another way, if someone put a powder in your home you would clean it up. The rat does the same thing and by cleaning the burrow they ingest a dose that will kill them. Another advantage of this method of rat control is the powder, when applied correctly, will not come in contact with the horses, pets or people.

The best reason to not have rats in your barn is the damage they create. We have a customer in Bedminster who built a beautiful barn. They brought a crew in from Kentucky to recreate a typical Kentucky horse barn. The barn has highly finished wood decorated with brass fixtures. When rats appeared they began chewing holes in the doors and wood siding. The customer was obviously upset. We developed a treatment plan that eliminated the rats. Once the rats were gone we put the farm on a monthly rodent treatment plan. Farms are going to get rats. We offer a maintenance plan so that rats will not get out of control. We offer advice on how to prevent rat infestations. Two simple preventative measures are to keep feed in metal containers and store the manure pile away from the barn.

If you need a rat treatment or have questions on how to reduce the chance of getting rats please contact us or email us at info@permakillexterminating.com.