Having a rodent problem is far from a pleasant experience. However, there are known breeds of dogs that help drive away mice, rats, and other vermin. So what breeds of dogs can help? There are several small breeds known to be excellent hunters, also called ratters. “These little dogs have been used as working dogs for centuries, with the sole purpose of getting into the small spaces and tight corners known for nesting mice and rats,” said Jessica Jane MacMurchy, adoption coordinator at Animal Charity of Ohio.
Before adopting a dog with a thought about pest control, however, you need to remember some key responsibilities. MacMurchy recommends keeping the dog up to date with annual vaccinations including leptospirosis (and an annual booster vaccination). Second, keep proper records of your dog’s rabies vaccine (every three years). And finally, flea and tick prevention is needed for dogs that have a tendency to prey on rodents. “Your monthly flea and tick prevention can not only stop fleas and rodent ticks from spreading to your dog, but they can also have deworming properties,” explains MacMurchy. “Mice and rats are known to carry tapeworms. They can easily be transmitted to dogs.”
There are several other potentially harmful consequences that property owners should be aware of. “Mice and rats can carry poison blocks into their nests that have been placed in the area or on other property,” says MacMurchy. Hence, it is important to avoid pest control methods that can harm your pets.
And in the worst case? “If your pet digests a mouse or rat,” says MacMurchy, “you should consult and see your veterinarian.”