Angie's List: What to do if animals invade your house

Updated: Nov. 30, 2017 at 10:15 AM EST
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CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Kathy Pribble doesn't have a thing against squirrels but she does think they ought to live outside.

"I walked in the house and I immediately knew that there was something amiss. I have two cats, but they don't knock over my vase of flowers, they don't leave trails of things through my house," says Homeowner Kathy Pribble.

If animals invade your house, you have a couple of options: 1: You can call an Animal Control expert to extract it Or 2: You can try to contain the critter yourself.

"I dusted, ran the sweeper in the TV room and then I was ready to tackle the Fig Newtons on the floor in the kitchen. As I left this room I looked back and the pillows, one happened to be cock-eyed and I decide I was going to go over and straighten it. When

I lifted up the pillow I could see a squirrel asleep underneath the pillow and I thought I was going to have a heart attack," says Pribble.

Every year, animal control experts say there are home invasions from bugs, raccoons, mice, squirrel, even bats and snakes.

"Wild animals in your house are funny unless they happen to you. Years ago, I had a member story where she was getting in the shower and she looked down and said, 'Oh, there's a leaf in my shower.' She reached down and it was actually a bat. These animals can be dangerous and destructive, so knowing what to do in case of that problem is important," says Angie Hicks, with Angie's List.

Getting the animals out of your house is just the first part of dealing with an animal invasion.

"Animal proofing is like buying insurance. You are insuring and your risk is going down that you are going to have animal entry. Once animals get in they are going to make a mess and it costs a lot to clean up so in the long run buying insurance for your home pays," says Cory McClung, with Wildlife Removal & Repair Contractor

Animals can be really clever about finding ways into your home. The tiniest holes may be enough for them.

"Some of the common entry points that we do see is the roof line of the house where the animal can tear the wood back and enter the attic. Also soffits, crawl space vents, any weak place on the structure that they can enter," says McClung.

Pribble counts herself lucky there wasn't more damage to deal with.

Other homeowners haven't been so lucky and have to pay thousands to repair chewed through wires or other damage.

Should you fall victim to an animal invasion, do your best not to panic. Even if you're afraid of the rat or bat or snake or whatever it is that's sought shelter from the storm.

Get to a safe place and do your research because hiring a pest removal company can get expensive. Be sure to close up those entry points once the animals are out of your house.

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