Rodent droppings should not be handled unless absolutely necessary and only with proper protective measures. Particularly after they have dried, feces can be reservoirs of a variety of dangerous diseases and viruses. These dry droppings break apart upon contact and release airborne particles that may enter your nasal passages, causing infection.
Do not handle droppings in your home without first taking preventive measures. A tightly fitted, OSHA-approved respirator with functioning cartridges and rubber gloves are necessary. Avoid sweeping or vacuuming the location, as this may lead to further release and dispersal of virus particles. Sterilization of affected areas with spray disinfectant is recommended.
The droppings, saliva and urine of certain rodent species are known to transmit Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS). Disturbance of the droppings causes the virus to go airborne in a process known as aerosolization. Deer mice are the most common transmitters of HPS.
Although transmission is rare, HPS can prove deadly if left untreated. Rodent control is still considered the most effective prevention of HPS.
Contact a local pest control professional at the first sign of a rodent infestation. Rodents are not only a hazard to human health, but can compromise the integrity of an infested structure through continuous gnawing. Furthermore, rodents breed continuously and populations grow rapidly. The most efficient rodent extermination methods are those administered by trained professionals.