It’s winter here in South Carolina and that means there are plenty of critters who would love to have a nice warm place to shelter for the winter. The problem is when they seek shelter in your home! Unwanted animal roommates could include bats, squirrels, raccoons, mice and even an occasional opossum. If an opossum happens upon a way in created by another animal, they might take advantage of it for a few days before moving on. The rest of our critter intruder list are happy to spend the entire winter in your attic, basement, shed, crawlspace or inside your walls.

Why is This a Problem?

First, critters who make their way into your home create a pathway or entry way for other animals and also various insects to also take up residence in your home. Secondly, most of these critters (excluding opossums) can carry diseases, particularly if you come in contact with their feces or urine. When the feces or urine dries, particles can become airborne and make their way into the main part of your home and make you sick. Lastly, they gnaw on sheetrock, storage containers, contents of storage containers and can even gnaw on wiring inside your walls, creating a fire hazard. Some will even gnaw on wood beams and can impact the structure of your home.

An Ounce of Prevention

The best way to deal with a winter critter problem is to prevent it. Seal well around doors and windows. Check for cracks and areas needing repairs along gutter attachments by the roof and check the security of your chimney screen to prevent animals from just dropping in. Check around the outside of your home for space around faucets and vents and make sure to seal up any holes or space around those openings you find. Inspect your attic and crawlspace to ensure you don’t have any unwanted critter roommates that could cause problems.

If you discover unwanted critter roommates, it’s important not to try to handle wildlife yourself. Many wildlife can be aggressive when they feel threatened and can have infectious bites. For example, raccoons can carry rabies among other diseases. When you find an unwanted critter in your home, it’s time to call Pee Dee Wildlife Control. They have the experienced professionals to remove and relocate the animals as well as help remediate any infectious materials left behind like feces and urine.