Who you gonna call?
April 11, 2013 10:32 AM   Subscribe

We just bought a house where we suspect rat poison was used in the yard. We have two dogs who love getting into stupid mischief. We want to hire someone who will go through the yard with a fine-toothed comb before we move in and find any rat poison that might be there, and remove it. What would this person or business be called?

I feel like I can't be the first person in history to want this service, but the exterminators I've called are treating me like I'm a pretty innovative thinker...and/or insane. Is this really not a thing I can buy? I'm in Los Angeles, if that helps. Thanks!
posted by town of cats to Home & Garden (8 answers total)
You could take a look around yourself, it's pretty easy to spot.
posted by Cosine at 10:34 AM on April 11, 2013

Sounds like a great business opportunity!

Maybe call your local SPCA? If they don't know of some established business that does this, one of their vet techs or volunteers might be happy to take the project on (for money, as well as love).
posted by rtha at 10:36 AM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

What's your yard like? Could you just mow and bag it?
posted by Mr. Yuck at 10:36 AM on April 11, 2013

Response by poster: The yard is large, steep, and terraced, and has a lot of nooks and crannies. We don't have a high degree of confidence in our ability to spot rat poison, not having any real past experience with the stuff, hence our desire to pay someone else to do it (plus I am extremely pregnant at the moment and not in a position to tromp around the yard for any real length of time).
posted by town of cats at 10:43 AM on April 11, 2013

How long ago do you think the poison was used? The rain may have washed it all away. In any case, the rat poison I've used in the past (warfarin) was a light blue/cyan sort of color.

There is another, water-insoluble kind that is a waxy block sort of affair, but I've never used it.
posted by jquinby at 11:04 AM on April 11, 2013

Could you ask the realtor to ask the previous owners about it?
posted by spunweb at 11:37 AM on April 11, 2013

Did the previous owners set the poison themselves or did they have an exterminator do it? If it was an exterminator maybe you can try to find who did it?

Also, I would trying calling an exterminator as they tend to know where poison might be set up - hot spots for rat activity - and also usually care about keeping household pets and young children safe from poisons.
posted by Crystalinne at 11:38 AM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

If it's outside, just turn on a sprinkler and water the hell out of the lawn. Also take a hose and spray down the edges of the foundations, and any nooks that the sprinkler doesn't reach. You don't need to get every square inch of lawn - there's no point in strewing rat poison everywhere when you can use 1% as much and just get the access points and hidey-holes.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:00 PM on April 11, 2013

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