Are you familiar with Norway rats? If you have seen Charlotte's Web, you know a little bit about Norway rats. Templeton was a Norway rat. Though his dark gray and light gray coloration in the cartoon might lead you to believe otherwise. Norway rats are often called brown rats because they are usually brown. Brown rats, like Templeton, dig burrows under the ground and scavenge for items to bring back to their burrows. When they enter homes, it is often only for a short time. Once they find some food or an item they believe is important, they bring it back to their underground burrow. If a Norway rat gets inside, it prefers to inhabit barns, outbuildings, and sheds. But there are occasions when a Norway rat will take up residence inside a home or business and it is possible for a Norway rat to live its entire life indoors. These are important facts to know if you want to get rid of Norway rats. Let's drill a little deeper.

a norway rat infesting a garage
norway rat outside a home

Protect Food

If you are finding evidence that rats are getting into your home, it is important to determine if it is a rat that prefers to be outside because there are ways you can gently guide those rats to stop entering your property. The first step is to protect potential food sources.

  • Consider putting stored food in sealed containers. While rats can chew their way through hard plastic, sealed, hard plastic containers keep smells from leaking out. Without those smells, Norway rats don't know there is food inside and they don't have the incentive to gnaw through the hard plastic.

  • Keep things clean inside your kitchen and pantry. Spills create an aroma that attracts Norway rats. Do a deep cleaning to make your interior less inviting.

  • If you have pets or livestock, pick food up after mealtimes to keep Norway rats from getting a bite to eat.  

Get Rid Of Clutter To Get Rid Of Norway Rats

Norway rats prefer to establish their burrows under piles of objects. If you have piles in your yard or something large sitting in your backyard, you will attract these rats.

When Norway rats get into your home, they will feel right at home if they find rooms that have clothing heaped on the floor or toys scattered about. Cleaning up clutter can have a big impact on whether or not Norway rats want to live in your home or just visit from the outside.

Seal Entry Points

After removing attractants inside your home, the next step is to seal your exterior walls. Since these rats target low entry points, you need to focus on basement door and window frames, gaps in the weatherstripping around doors, gaps around plumbing, damaged vents, weep holes on brick building, etc. Fill small holes using a material like silicone caulk and larger holes with foam. Reinforce vulnerable areas with wire mesh.


Now that your interior is less attractive and you've sealed possible entry points, it is time to consider rodent control. Traps can be used to capture and remove any Norway rats that are still inside your home. We strongly recommend that you hire a professional for this. There are several reasons:

  • Rats are suspicious about new items placed in their environment and it is difficult to catch them with traps if you are not trained.

  • A professional knows how to monitor for rodent activity inside your home. If you manage to catch a rat, it may lead you to think that your infestation has been resolved, while Norway rats continue to damage your property, spread illness, and leave ticks, fleas, lice and other parasites around your home.

  • A professional will deal with secondary pest issues and address areas of contamination.

Exterior Sanitation

Norway rats aren't as picky as we are. They'll eat many things we wouldn't consider to be edible. One place they often find a bite to eat is in exposed trash. Make sure you put trash bags directly into a covered container. It doesn't take any effort at all for a rat to chew a hole in a plastic bag. Do an inspection of your perimeter and consider any possible food sources Norway rats could take advantage of and address them. If you put a fence around a food source, be sure to install it at least a foot underground to prevent these rats from tunneling under.

If you live in our South Carolina service area, keep in mind that Aiken Pest Control offers industry-leading rodent control services for homes and businesses. We can help you get Norway rats out and keep them out.


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