Diseases that Rats and Rodents Hold

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Pests are known to carry diseases, especially rats and rodents. Here are some of the diseases these pests hold.

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Pests are known to carry diseases, especially rats and rodents. Here are some of the diseases these pests hold.

How Do Rats and Rodents Spread Disease

There are disease concerns with rats and other rodents. There are two ways that rodents and rats can spread disease.

  • Direct transfer of disease - Rats pass a disease directly to humans, mostly through a bite. If a rat or rodent has bit you we suggest to seek medical attention.
  • Indirect transfer of disease - Rats and rodents bring other pests with them. This includes ticks, mites, and fleas that can pass diseases from an infected rodent to a human host.

Here are 7 common disease that rats and rodents hold. Some of these disease are more common in Las Vegas than others, but all disease that we will cover have been associated with rats and rodents.

Rat bite fever From Rats & Rodents

  • Rat bite fever comes from rat bites.
  • More than 10% of rat bites can result in Rat Bite fever.
  • The bacteria are carried by rats in their mouth and nose.
  • The rat itself is not ill, but they carry the bacteria in their nose and mouth.

Leptospirosis From Rats & Rodents

  • Leptospirosis is caused by bacteria called Leptospira that infects humans and their pests.
  • There have been cases in Las Vegas, although symptoms are typically mild.
  • Some people infected with leptospirosis will have no symptoms at all, and some people will become severely ill.  
  • Cattle, pigs, dogs, raccoons, rats, and rodents, carry the Leptospira bacteria

Salmonellosis From Rats & Rodents

  • Salmonellosis is a bacterial infection of the intestines.
  • Infection can happen when a person eats food or drinks water or milk that has been contaminated by rats and/or rodents.

Monkeypox From Rats & Rodents

  • Monkeypox is a disease caused by a virus found in monkeys and other animals such as rats, mice and other rodents.
  • People get monkeypox from getting bit by an infected rat or rodent.
  • There is no specific treatment for monkeypox; but there is a vaccine available that lowers the risk of getting the disease.

The Plague From Rats & Rodents

  • Caused by a flea bite that has fed on a wild rat or rodent (indirect transmission).
  • Can cause large sores on the arms and legs.
  • It can infect humans, dogs, cats, and other pets.
  • The Plague is not common in Las Vegas.

Tularemia From Rats & Rodents

  • Tularemia is a bacteria that is also found in animals (rodents,  rats, etc.).  
  • People and their pets can become infected through bites or by being exposes to blood or raw meat.
  • Tularemia can be directly or indirectly transmitted. Ticks and fleas are known to spread the disease.
  • Similar to the Plague, it is not very common in Las Vegas.

Salmonellosis From Rats & Rodents

  • Salmonellosis is a bacterial infection of the intestines.
  • Infection can happen when a person eats food or drinks water or milk that has been contaminated by rats and/or rodents.

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