Roof rats can be carriers of diseases. They can transmit these diseases through physical contact, bites, by contamination or by fleas that are feeding on the rodent.
Historically, infected fleas have transmitted serious plagues from rats to humans. Bubonic plague was a scourge in Europe several times throughout history. There are still outbreaks of plague in the United States and around the world today. Trichinosis may be contracted through eating undercooked meat of animals that have fed on rats. Rats contaminating food or food preparation surfaces can transmit food poisoning. Rats can also transmit rat bite fever through bacteria in their mouth.
Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome is transferred via inhalation of rodent urine, droppings or saliva. Although roof rats have not yet been connected to HPS, everyone is advised to use caution when dealing with an infestation. It is best to contact pest management professionals for an inspection and evaluation.
Roof Rats & Disease Video