Rats bite sleeping Swift Current residents
Amid reports of people in Swift Current, Sask., being bitten in their beds by rats, a health region has called on citizens to fight back.
On Tuesday, the Cypress Health Region issued an advisory saying it too has received calls about rats infesting Swift Current, a city of 15,000 in the southwest part of the province.
"The calls range from rat sightings to bites in people's own beds," the region said in a news release.
'It is imperative that we all get involved and take steps that are necessary to eliminate rats in Swift Current'—Cypress Health Region
The health region said because of the many diseases rats carry, it's worried about the health hazard. Efforts by the city alone will not be sufficient to solve the rat problem, it said.
"It is imperative that we all get involved and take steps that are necessary to eliminate rats in Swift Current," the region said.
A petition started by Safari Inn owner Ike Reimer is being circulated urging the city to take a more aggressive stand on fighting the problem.
He now keeps a can of bear-spray handy, ready to blast any rat that crosses his path.
"We have to do something," Reimer said. "It's not them running around. They're starting to do some real damage."
A town hall meeting to discuss rats has been set for later in the month.
The health region has advised people to take steps to control rats, including not putting out their garbage until shortly before pickup. They're also being told to seal all holes and cracks in foundations to shut the rodents out.
Rodent bait can be effective, the region said. However, rats may not take the bait if there are other tasty meals available.