Most people think of squirrels as fairy tale creatures that charmingly run up and down neighbourhood trees. While they are certainly cute and playful at times, they can become nuisances if they enter your home.
Squirrels are very curious creatures. They are quite used to being around humans, so they will not hesitate to go through any opening in your home if they feel hungry or adventurous enough to go exploring. They are very small, flexible, and are excellent climbers, so no part of your house is safe.
What Harm Can Squirrels Do?
No matter how cute they are, squirrels are not meant to be pets. They carry ticks and fleas that can jump to your actual pets or your furniture. Squirrels mark their territory by spraying urine on places they inhabit, causing a foul smell.
If a squirrel ends up in your attic, it can cause damage to the protective structures on your roof. They have a biting power of over 7,000 pounds per square inch, so not even asphalt roof shingles are safe from being chewed through!
Getting Rid of a Squirrel in Your House
The good news is that squirrels are very responsive to external stimuli, so there are several humane ways to get them out of your house. Here are five of them:
1. Help It Find an Exit
Squirrels don’t want to hang out with humans, so if you find yourself in a room with one, it likely wants to get out as much as you want it to leave. The first thing to do is do your best to help it find its own way out. Open all doors and windows that lead outside, and close all interior access points.
If you can, leave the room yourself and let the squirrel find its way. Keep all your family members and even pets far away from the squirrel to prevent flea infestations or an aggressive attack!
2. Humane Trap
If you already have a bait trap in your home, set it on the floor and leave it for an hour or two. In the best case scenario, it will walk in without any prompting.
You can also try the blanket method: wear heavy gloves and slowly approach the squirrel with a blanket in front of you. Drop the blanket on the squirrel and roll it up. Be as gentle as you can so you don’t injure it. Bring it outside and let it escape.
If a squirrel has been living in your attic, try to drive them away with the smell of vinegar. Soak rags in cider vinegar and place them all around the attic. This way, they may choose to leave on their own.
4. Loud Noises
Squirrels are easily startled by loud noises. If you think you have a visitor in your attic or chimney, you can frighten it out of the house by banging on the floor or playing loud music.
You can also set up a bright light and leave it in the area at night. The squirrel may feel exposed and leave your house to find its residence somewhere darker.
5. Prevention Is Better Than Cure
Arguably, the most humane way to get rid of a squirrel in your home is not to let it enter at all!
To begin with, cover your chimney and look through your attic for potential entry points. Take down bird feeders and cut down tree branches that drift too close to your roof. Also, make sure to keep windows and doors closed at all times.
If you find a squirrel in your backyard, don’t offer it food. It will only keep coming back and try even harder to get into your house if you give it the opportunity.
Spotting squirrels can be fun when you’re outdoors, but they are a nuisance if they find their way inside your home. Thankfully, there are many squirrel removal methods you can use to drive them away—an open window, a loud noise, or bright lights can easily lead them right back outside. If you are having trouble with a persistent squirrel infestation, you will need to call in professionals to get the job done.
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