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  • Rats!

    Hubby saw a mouse and the guy who cut the pasture saw several so we picked up a couple barn cats (we now have 4). However the other night when closing up the barn, hubby noted the chickens raised a fuss and when he went in there, he saw a rather large RAT scurry away.

    Rather not get another dog (plus wouldn't it need training of some kind before turning it loose?). Any other suggestions to get rid of a decent sized RAT in my barn. Gives me the willies (not to mention just the grossness of it!).
    "Of course it's hard. It's supposed to be hard. It's the Hard that makes it great."

    "Get up... Get out... Get Drunk. Repeat as needed." -- Spike

  • #2
    If it's not a Rodent Of Unusual Size, a good sized tough mousing cat can get it.

    Otherwise put out traps for the really big'uns.
    You jump in the saddle,
    Hold onto the bridle!
    Jump in the line!


    • Original Poster

      Thanks. Hubby just came in and said he saw more than one. NOT amused.
      "Of course it's hard. It's supposed to be hard. It's the Hard that makes it great."

      "Get up... Get out... Get Drunk. Repeat as needed." -- Spike


      • #4
        We used D-Con because the cats will hunt moles, voles, mice, rabbits and birds, but will not touch rats. The D-Con did the job, and the cats left it alone. Put it in areas that are out of reach to cats and dogs.
        "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein



        • #5
          your cats may need time to settle in, learn the hang outs for the rats, etc.........are they good sized cats?.......we have a large variety of sizes, and the small cats always stay away from the rats................but, over the course of time, our rat population has disappeared, thankfully..........i even had one come into the kitchen via dryer vent...my trusty JRT got it, but what a terrible commotion, and she got a bad bite on the nose............
          any dog that is prone to have a good prey drive will go after the rat, but will it also chase the cats and chickens...THAT is the rub......
          i am always scared to use bait.........the glue traps are worthless, plus a cat or dog could get stuck on them.....

          know of anyone with a good barn ratter dog that you could borrow?


          • #6
            My very cat savy friend has told me numerous times that MOST cats don't go after rats. I to got a cat for my barn and she has yet to touch one!! She will bring down a bunny, a mouse, or a bird, but never a rat.

            I have put poison out with good results in the past. Cat never touched it or a dead rat.

            Now my rat pop is very much under control thanks to the group of corn snakes hanging around the last 2 years. I don't mind non-venomous snakes at all, but every time I almost step on one, or have one scurry when I lift a pallet I still jump!!! The large adults(rats) have fallen prey to the foxes as well. Messier than the snakes since they like to leave a few parts.

            Cat just lays around and watches the others do her work! I still don't get why she will get a rabbit that's bigger than a rat and no rats! Maybe bunnies are tasty.
            Check us out on Facebook at EVER AFTER FARM


            • #7
              I had an infestation a few years ago--destructive buggers! I got rat bait boxes, smeared peanut butter on the posts to get them to get used to going in them & then spread peanut butter on the bait blocks. It took a lot of repetition to get them out. I did a bunch of reading on habits and feeding before I made a dent in them. The cats did nothing in the way of
              control & my dogs couldn't get to them in their burrows.

              I'm for live and let live, but they need to live elsewhere...


              • #8
                Not the first time I've heard of cats not catching rats. Rats see decently well and are harder to catch then mice. They can be caught.. but it's not a sure thing.

                Barn here has lots of nooks and crannies. The jrts and the cockers go rat hunting. They kill some, but more disappear into bedding and holes before they can be caught. We've taken to dropping ratoxin packs into spaces the dogs can't get into. We looked into the toxicity of it if the rats died and were found later by dogs and there was little risk. We just needed to place the poison where the dogs have no chance of getting it.


                • #9
                  Was told for every rat seen, estimate 10 more.

                  Got plenty of cats, but at one point did have rats try to take over. (Watching them play "rat jamboree games" in front of my barn while my farrier was packing up was my clue I was out of control)

                  Had to call in the experts - they showed up in white vans, put out black boxes, which they checked & supposedly resupplied every few days, and in a couple weeks, no sign of a rat, and no sign since!

                  Felt kinda bad for the rats, but it seems when they decide to move in, tough measures are the only way to move em out!!



                  • #10
                    Our cat was useless when it came to hunting rats. For the past couple of years, we have had a wonderful fox. I have not seen a rat since she arrived. Every day, she sits on the hill above our barn, scouting the barn area to be sure no rats have returned. I hope she stays healthy and active.

                    I don't know if there is anything you can do to attract a fox. Perhaps some rehabber could help you move one into your barn area. Of course, they do eat chickens after they finish off the rats.


                    • #11
                      Get a Rat Zapper from amazon. Awesome little device.

                      Hindsight bad, foresight good.


                      • #12
                        We have one. Testimonials looked great. Didn't work for us at all. Load of rats, none would touch it. Followed the directions no dice for us.


                        • #13
                          We've found it very effective on mice and rats.
                          Hindsight bad, foresight good.


                          • #14
                            The rat zapper was pretty effective for the mice, but I'm not sure we caught many rats.

                            The population kind of exploded and we got the BO to purchase some of the bait stations and we went through a fair amount of bait and saw several dead rats. There was also a really bad smell in the amateur tack room for a few days that we attributed to a dead rat. There now seem to be fewer of them. We stopped with the poison b/c one of the amateurs got upset, not with the smell but with the fact that we were massacring innocent animals.
                            The Evil Chem Prof


                            • #15
                              I used large rat traps that I put peanut butter on. I had to drill a hole in the corner of the traps and used bailing twine to tie them to something. I was told to do this by the feed store owner as he said a big rat, if alive could drag a trap off. That worked well. My 80lb catahoula/husky mix ended up being the ultimate exterminator though. He can smell them and was relentless in the hunt.
                              "Sometimes you just have to shut up and color."


                              • #16
                                I have a small barn, a shed row on a bed of stone dust. Rats were tunneling from the outside, under the walls and making tunnels under the stall mats---very gross. I put rocks in all the holes, and a nice hawk moved in, and no rats last year. Keep you fingers crossed for this year. You have my sympathies. Rats are gross.


                                • #17
                                  Ick Eww Uggh Yuck.

                                  You have my sympathies. They started developing land across the street and down the road from me a couple of years ago, disturbing a swamp (filling it in I think) and all of a sudden I had rats. My barn is/was spotless. I had never had a problem in the ten years that I had been at my farm. I never saw one, but had some disturbing tunneling around the walls of the barn. Moved the horses to the big pasture out back, pretty much quarrantined the barn and set poison all over. They are nasty vile things, and I had no intention of having them set up home in my barn. A week later found a HUUUUGE dead one in the front doorway of the barn, and needless to say, I was not surprised that the barn cat wouldn't tangle with it. My Shepherd probably wouldn't have even tangled with it. Poison. Problem solved. Ick. My sympaties. Yuck.
                                  ~Rest in Peace Woody...1975-2008~


                                  • #18
                                    If they're the large brown rats then no, most cats won't screw with them. Even if they catch larger animals like rabbits, rabbits don't fight back. Rats do.

                                    A safe poison, traps or a BB gun.
                                    (if you don't want to get a Jack Russel Terrorist)

                                    Or do you know anyone with a working JRT that can come over a few times and let the dog work yoour barn?

                                    Although if you've seen multiple rats, I'd go with bait.

                                    Nasty buggers to have, I wouldn't be pleased either.
                                    You jump in the saddle,
                                    Hold onto the bridle!
                                    Jump in the line!


                                    • #19
                                      We put out kill traps with peanut butter. We got one in each trap the first night, but the plan is on hold while my husband is out of town. I'm okay with the killing in theory, but I don't want to deal with the bodies.


                                      • #20
                                        We recently bought our farm and completely renovated the house, we had a nest turn up under a shed, only found out after we caught one in a mouse trap in our mudroom!!!! EWWWWW! poison was the only thing that could get rid of them at that point, they live in HUGE groups! Hubby had to go out every morning for a week and pick up dead bodies before we let the dogs out. I don't even want to know what his final count was :P