Skip to Content
Serving the Colorado Springs, & Douglas & Teller Counties

Mouse Vs. Rat Infestation: How To Tell The Difference

two mice next to each other

If you’re dealing with a rodent infestation, it’s important to identify what type you have. Learn the differences between a mouse and rat infestation, and contact High Country Pest Control in Colorado Springs to schedule an appointment for rodent control.

Different Types Of Mice & Rats

Mice and rats have different species that are more likely to infest certain areas. By identifying the area that you live in, you’ll be able to narrow down what type of rodent you’re likely dealing with.

The only type of mouse to infest a home is the House Mouse. These rodents can appear in rural, suburban, and urban homes.

Brown Rats or Sewer Rats can infest homes in both rural and urban areas. They like to burrow, living in sewers, basements, and crawl spaces. If you have a rat infestation, it’s most likely a Brown Rat.

Another rat you might find in your home is the Black Rat. These rats are less common, residing closer to waterfronts; however, you may find them in trees or attics.


One way to identify the rodents in your home is to examine the droppings that they leave. Do not handle droppings with bare hands. Rodents carry a variety of diseases, which can be spread through fecal matter. If you come into contact with rodent droppings, take care to clean and disinfect the area and your skin.

Mouse droppings are smaller than rat droppings, but they drop more pellets than rats. Mice can leave between 50 to 75 pellets a day in an infested area. Mouse pellets are approximately ¼ inch long and are pointed at the ends.

Brown Rats will leave smaller droppings in comparison to Black Rats, and the ends of the pellets will be blunt. Look for droppings that are approximately ¼ inch long and have more of a rectangular shape.

Black Rats leave larger pellets. These pellets are about ½ inch long, and their droppings are pointy at the ends. Curved pellets are also a good indication that you’re dealing with Black Rats.

Part of the rodent control services that High Country Pest Control offers is identifying what type of pests you have. If you’re unsure what type of pest is infesting your home, contact us today to schedule an appointment.


Another way to tell what type of rodent is infesting your home is to keep an eye out for certain signs and behavior. You might not realize these signs at first, but keeping an eye out for them will help you determine whether you have mice or rats in your home.

Mice are a little more conspicuous with their activities than rats are. They’re curious and will often explore new areas. This can make them difficult to track because they don’t follow a set pattern. However, they do like to nest in soft materials, so keep an eye out for ruined pillows, chewed up papers, and other destroyed soft materials. Also, keep an eye out for droppings and gnaw marks.

Rats, on the other hand, are much more cautious than mice and will be more discreet with their activities. It can be difficult to identify a rat infestation at first, but they will form a set pattern of behavior, so you’ll start to notice their presence over time. Look for oil stains where they have rubbed their bodies, like baseboards, walls, stair corners; gnaw marks on wood; and droppings.

Pest exterminators are trained to identify the behavior of rodents. Contact High Country Pest Control for rodent control that helps identify your pests.


A few rodents in your home is one thing, but once they start to reproduce, you’ll be dealing with a serious infestation that can cause physical damage to your home and health problems to your family. Learn more about the breeding habits of mice and rats to understand how severe an infestation can become.

If you’re dealing with mice, it’s vital to exterminate them before they start to breed. That’s because mice breed quickly, producing around 10 litters a year, with up to six babies per litter. That’s 60 more mice infesting your home — and that’s just from one female. Mice can produce offspring as young as six weeks old and live for 9 months to a year. This could mean hundreds of mice infesting your home in very little time.

Rats can also breed very easily. Rats will have fewer litters, but more babies per litter. They can produce up to six litters and 12 babies per litter — equaling more than 70 rats per year. Offspring can start to breed as young as three months old, increasing the number of rats infesting a home. Luckily, rats can only breed in the spring, making it the perfect time to eradicate them.

Whether you have a mouse or rat infestation, either could be devastating to the value of your home and the safety of your family. Contact High Country Pest Control in Colorado Springs today to take advantage of our rodent control services.