Ratastic News Week “Cat Sized and Toilet Swimming Rats” Edition

David Bennett

There is a saying that the truth is stranger than fiction, and when we look at rats, we at TBRTC know that’s true!   We’ve got some stories that are strange, funny, and downright disgusting! We couldn’t make this stuff up!  So rather than talk about it here, we thought we’d just dive right in!  Like rats dive into sewer lines and swim, swim, swim right up into your toilet! By the time we’re finished here, you’ll be checking the toilet every time you sit down!  Speaking of which…


Last week’s quiz questionUsually using natural predators are a good way to control rats. What colossal mistake in Hawaii caused both predator and rat to invade?

Answer: Mongooses were introduced to Hawaii to control the invasive rat population. However, rats are nocturnal and mongooses are diurnal. Hawaii now has a problem with both. 

This week’s quiz question: Are you right handed or left handed? Rats too have a preference! Which hand do rats use most often? 


It ACTUALLY happens! Rat swims its way into a writer’s toilet and she gives the world shivers!

We toldyou a long time ago that rats can swim up into your toilet and by gum, it actually happened!  Musophobia is the clinical

term for “fear  of mice and rats,” but we don’t think there’s a name for a phobia about finding a rat in your toilet!   Writer Nicole Cliffe, who is a Canadian writer living in Utah, writing for Slate, SELF, Vulture, ELLE, Catapult, and The Guardian.  She rocked Twitter when she posted that a little while after her kids went to bed one of them came to her husband in the kitchen and told him they “couldn’t poop because there was a rat in their toilet.”  So he took the child to a different toilet, and being a prepared kind of guy, took a plastic bag, double bagged the rat and threw him in the trash and was lauded as a hero by his kids!   The Daily Dot described the responses she got from her  Twitter followers which ranged from disgust to altruistic:  “No. NO. I HAVE LITERAL NIGHTMARES ABOUT THIS AND SOMETIMES HAVE TO GET OFF THE TOILET MID-PEE JUST TO CHECK IF I FORGOT TO LOOK BEFORE I SAT DOWN,” one user wrote.  Another user may not have been joking (is nothingsacred?) when she tweeted: “I instantly regret scrolling through Twitter on the toilet right now.”

— Kate (@goonerkate) July 25, 2019

Some people had the urge to be humanitarian and rescue the rats they found swimming around in their toilets:

“We had a BABY rat in ours! Still alive! Swimming his best! Squealing pitifully for help! My mom rescued him, set him up in a little recovery room & warned off would-be disturbers with this sign,” Miranda Robinson wrote on Twitter.


“We had a rat in our toilet when I was a kid! After that incident, my mom kept her sewing machine on the toilet lid so that any other rats that came up wouldn’t be able to get out. I had to ask her to move it every time I used to the bathroom.”

— Anne Thériault (@anne_theriault) July 25, 2019

“My little brother and I once rescued a rat from the toilet. Tried to feed him cheese aggressively. He bit my brother. We didn’t get adults involved until we confessed “our new pet rat bit him!”
You’re not the only one and it could be worse”— Marianne (@mbrowntrigg) July 25, 2019

Miranda Robinson had a great one about rescuing a rat in the toilet.  She even posted a pic of the sign her mom made when she rescued a baby rat they found swimming in the toilet!

“We had a BABY rat in ours! Still alive! Swimming his best! Squealing pitifully for help! My mom rescued him, set him up in a little recovery room & warned off would-be disturbers with this sign.”

We don’t know how many of you  would be this kind to a rat that surprises you in the toilet, but again, it goes to show the wide variety of responses a rat can get out of humans!  Remember the adage “Look before you leap?”   We advise “Look before you sit,” and if there’s a rat in your toilet, give us a call pronto!  We can help with that!  Because after all, you don’t want to happen to you what happened to an acquaintance one of Cliffe’s Twitter followers: “When I lived in Nicaragua, a friend’s wife got bit on the ass by a rat as she went to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Total long-needle-rabies protocol in the abdomen.”

— Snuffy (@saintsnuffy) July 25, 2019


Ceiling Rat Makes Its Presence Known By Literally Raining on Customers in Pharmacy

If you’re wanting to diet, we guarantee that this story alone will put you off food for days and days! So put down your dinner and come back after you’ve eaten!   If you’ve a strong stomach or a strange sense of humor, by all means read on!  We’ve devoted a lot of time to making people aware that commercial drop ceilings often conceal rat infestations.  Often, people don’t realize it until they either hear something scuffling around up there, or drop into your lap, or… the rat makes its dead presence known  (not by being a ghost! Come on!) by dripping through the ceiling onto…customers…the floor…it’s raining rats!  (See, now you’ve got that song “It’s Raining Men!” going through your head!   You’re welcome!)

Rotting rats in a commercial ceiling rained decomposition juices AND maggots (We TOLD you to stop reading!)   in a pharmacy in Hull, Yorkshire, England.   The truly bizarre thing is, they knew about the infestation, and did what you’re supposed to do:  They called a pest control company. Comments in brackets are definitely our comments, not those of HullLive.   HullLive.com goes on with the weirdness: “During the last infestation, the rats were killed but they were left in the ceiling and the flesh began to rot. The smell was horrendous [Hard to imagine! ] customers kept asking us what it was, and we just had to smile about it.  gets a LOT weirder when they start poking the ceiling (especially when they KNOW what’s up there!!)  ““There were two rats in the ceiling, just above the tiles, and when they started to decompose it began to leak through the tiles. There was a grey/red splodge which was attracting flies all around it. “I actually poked one of the tiles and half a dozen maggots fell to the floor and were wriggling about.”  At this point you don’t even want dessert, do you?   It seems a relief to us all when the pest control company finally comes around and collects the dead rats, “The pest controller says the main issue is the drain which runs under the property and this is where the rats are coming from. He suggested smoke bombs should be placed in the drain.”

In link associated with this story Pete the pest control professional performs an excellent demonstration on the MK4 Fenn trap.


Philly Endures Invasion of Rats as Big as Cats Inviting Themselves to Barbeques and Running the Neighborhood

Philadelphia has been battling rats for a century.  In northeast Philadelphia,  they’re still around and getting bigger and bossier! They’re inviting themselves to barbeques.  They’re taking over the neighborhood in the largest, most organized gang war that Philadelphians have ever seen.   NBCPhiladelphia reports:“Northeast Philadelphia residents living on Howland Street lost count of how many rodents they’ve seen just this summer, though one woman estimated she killed at least 10 on her own. In the last two months, these scampering, furry creatures became so brazen that they practically invited themselves to barbecues, according to one resident. “Medium ones, big ones, diving under cars, running down the street,” neighbor Antoinette Bethel-Danzy said. “They just out here like they run the block.” The terror started sometime earlier this summer when rats the size of cats moved onto Howland Street. Burrows, which can house up to eight rats at a time, appeared throughout the block and seemed to duplicate overnight. “They are huge,” Damaris Rivera said. “They look like cats to me. I’m not exaggerating.”   This time is rat season for the city, which runs from April to about October according to the news report.  But Philadelphia’s environmental health administrator is taking it all in stride. “That’s life in any city,” he said.  Even the news agency there seems nonplussed about it: “In fact, Philadelphia ranks No. 1 in the nation for rats, according to the 2015 American Housing Survey. That’s not an awesome statistic, but at least we’re not associated with the dreaded Rat King.”   Indeed!





RodeXit proofing strip now available in 

  1. 27 yard roll/coils (81 feet) 
  2. 12 yard roll/coils (36 feet) 
  3. 9 yard roll coils (27 feet) 


Be on the look out for venerable door related Rodent entry points, threshold gaps, brush sweeps/weather strips, astragal gaps in-between double doors, aluminum shielding protection strip damage.  


                                                 Short video on RodeXit for Food industry 


If  attending Rat Riddance Rodent and Vector Control Academy this upcoming week in Washington DC, make a point to hello, looking forward to learning abundantly!


Visit us at PestWorld2019 San Diego, California, October 15th– 18th. booths 140 & 142


Tags: Cityrats, Exclusion, Fenn Trap, Fenn Traps, Food quality and safety, Integrated Pest Management, IPM, Mk 4 Fenn Trap, Norway rats, NPMA, NWCOA, NYPMA, Pest management, Pest Management Canada 2019, PestWorld2019, Quality Assurance, Rodent exclusion

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