What does it mean when a squirrel gets in your house?

Answered by Robert Dupre

When a squirrel gets into your house, it can be quite a nuisance. These furry creatures are naturally curious and agile, and they can find their way into your home through small openings or cracks in the walls, roof, or foundation. But what does it actually mean when a squirrel manages to infiltrate your living space?

1. Seeking Food: Squirrels are constantly on the lookout for food sources, and if they find a way into your home, it likely means they have detected a potential source of sustenance. This could be anything from crumbs on the floor to stored food in your pantry. Squirrels have a keen sense of smell and are excellent climbers, so they can easily access food that is left out or improperly stored.

2. Warm Shelter: Squirrels are active throughout the year and need a warm place to nest and rest. Your home may provide the ideal shelter for them, especially during colder months. Attics, crawl spaces, and chimneys are common areas where squirrels make their nests. These places offer protection from the elements and predators, making them attractive to squirrels.

3. Nesting Areas: Squirrels also seek out suitable nesting sites, especially when they are preparing for breeding or raising their young. Your attic or any other secluded area in your home can serve as an ideal spot for them to build their nests. Squirrels construct nests out of twigs, leaves, and other materials, creating a cozy and secure environment for their young.

The presence of a squirrel in your home can have several implications:

1. Damage: Squirrels have sharp teeth that continuously grow, and they may gnaw on various materials in your home, including wood, insulation, and electrical wiring. This can lead to structural damage and even pose a fire hazard if wires are chewed through. Additionally, squirrels may tear up insulation or use it as nesting material, reducing its effectiveness.

2. Noise and Disturbance: Squirrels are active and agile creatures, and their presence in your home can result in a lot of noise. They may scurry around, scratch at walls, or make chirping sounds, especially if they have young nearby. This can disrupt your sleep and peace of mind, causing stress and annoyance.

3. Health Risks: While squirrels are generally not aggressive toward humans, they can still pose health risks. Squirrels may carry diseases such as leptospirosis, salmonellosis, or even rabies. Their droppings can also contaminate surfaces and transmit diseases or parasites. It is important to exercise caution and avoid direct contact with squirrels or their waste.

To prevent squirrels from entering your home, consider the following measures:

1. Seal Entry Points: Inspect your home for any openings or gaps that squirrels can use to gain access. Patch or repair these openings using materials like wire mesh, steel wool, or caulk. Pay attention to areas around vents, chimneys, and rooflines.

2. Secure Food Sources: Ensure that any potential food sources are properly stored in airtight containers. Clean up any spills or crumbs promptly and keep your living space clean and free of food debris.

3. Trim Trees and Branches: Squirrels are excellent climbers and can easily jump from trees onto your roof. Trim branches that are close to your home to limit their access points.

4. Install Squirrel Deterrents: Consider using squirrel deterrents such as motion-activated lights, sprinklers, or ultrasonic devices. These can help deter squirrels from approaching your home.

If you find a squirrel in your home, it is best to contact a professional wildlife removal service. They have the expertise and tools to safely and humanely remove the squirrel from your home and address any potential damage or entry points.

Remember, prevention is key when it comes to dealing with squirrels in your home. By taking proactive measures to seal off entry points and remove potential food sources, you can reduce the likelihood of squirrels finding their way indoors and causing disruptions.