Woman evicted for pet rat infestation

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Feb 9, 2013 in Rat Answers | Subscribe

PORTAGE COUNTY, WI (WAOW/CNN) – A woman was evicted from her mobile home after she allowed hundreds of pet rats to infest it.

Darlene Flatoff was given her first pet rat as a gift, but authorities say the rats have multiplied over the years.

In December, Portage County Sheriff’s officers were told about a severe case of rodent infestation at Flatoff’s mobile home in the town of Plover. They say after warning Flatoff several times to get rid of the rats, she was evicted, and the town condemned the property.

Authorities say roughly 300 rats lived with Flatoff at one time, but now only a few dozen can be seen.

“It shocked me a little bit because usually people don’t have that many rats for pets,” said Miguel Lopez, property manager. “We can tell now that there’s a lot of animals, because they peek through the windows and whatnot.”

According to court documents, Flatoff said the rats were her friends and didn’t cause any harm. Still, sheriff’s officers say that’s no way to live.

Now her trailer sits empty, except for the rats.

Matthew Schneider owns Schneider’s Wildlife Control. He says in his nearly 20 years, he’s never seen anything quite like this.

“The odor was rather potent,” he said. “I mean, I just walked in the front door I didn’t walk any further and the smell was overpowering. When you get to this amount of infestation, they’re going to do a ton of damage.”

Copyright 2013 WAOW via CNN. All rights reserved.

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