Orkin celebrates ‘Rat List’ with commemorative T-shirt


October 24, 2023



Orkin named the Top 50 Rattiest Cities List, with Chicago, Ill., topping the list for the ninth year in a row.

Los Angeles, Calif., moved up to the No. 2 ranking while New York City rounds out the top three spots. Jumping up 10 spots this year is Houston, Texas, to No. 20, and Greensboro, N.C., moves up 17 spots to take No. 50.

New this year, Orkin is celebrating Chicago’s top spot placement by releasing a limited-edition T-shirt. The shirt features a “Top Rattiest City” design made specifically for Chicago, commemorating the dedication of the city as it perseveres in the battle against rodents.

Cities on the Rattiest Cities List are based on the number of new rodent services showcasing the demand and also indicates the efforts that residents and businesses of the top cities have taken to treat rodent issues.

Orkin ranked metro regions by the number of new rodent treatments performed from Sept.1, 2022, to Aug. 31, 2023. This ranking includes both residential and commercial pest control treatments.

  1. Chicago, Ill.
  2. Los Angeles, Calif. (+1)
  3. New York City, N.Y. (-1)
  4. Washington, D.C.
  5. San Fransisco, Calif.
  6. Philadelphia, Pa.
  7. Baltimore, Md.
  8. Denver, Colo.
  9. Detroit, Mich. (+1)
  10. Cleveland-Akron, Ohio (-1)
  11. Minneapolis. Paul, Minn,
  12. Seattle, Wash.
  13. Boston, Ma.
  14. Atlanta, Ga.
  15. Indianapolis, Ind.
  16. Pittsburgh, Pa.
  17. Hartford, Conn.
  18. Columbus, Ohio (+3)
  19. Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. (+1)
  20. Houston, Texas (+10)
  21. Charlotte, N.C. (+16)
  22. Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas (+2)
  23. Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (+8)
  24. Milwaukee, Wis. (-6)
  25. Grand Rapids, Mich. (-2)
  26. Portland, Ore. (-4)
  27. Norfolk-Porthsmith, Va. (+1)
  28. San Diego, Calif. (-9)
  29. Richmond-Peterburg, Va. (+3)
  30. New Orleans, La. (+8)
  31. Cincinatti, Ohio (-6)
  32. Greenville-Spratanburg, Mich. (+10)
  33. Sacramento, Calif. (+7)
  34. Kansas City, Mo. (-5)
  35. Nashville, Tenn. (-9)
  36. Tampa-St. Pete, Fla. (+5)
  37. Orlando-Daytona Beach, Fla.(+12)
  38. Buffalo, N.Y. (-5)
  39. St. Louis, Mo. (-5)
  40. Phoenix, Ariz. (+5)
  41. Champaign, Ill. (-14)
  42. Albany-Troy, N.Y. (-6)
  43. Flint, Mich. (-8)
  44. Burlington-Plattsburgh, N.Y. (+4)
  45. Albuquerque, Ariz. (+17)
  46. Rochester, N.Y. (+5)
  47. South Bend, Ind. (-4)
  48. Syracuse, N.Y. (-9)
  49. Charleston-Huntington, S.C. (-2)
  50. Greensboro, N.C. (+17)

Each fall, mice and other rodents invade an estimated 21 million homes in the U.S. They typically enter homes between October and February looking for food, water and shelter from the cold.

“Rodents multiply swiftly and when an infestation is left unattended, they can cause extensive damage to homes and yards,” Dr. Ben Hottel, BCE, a technical service manager for Orkin, said in the news release.. “Rats are capable of squeezing into spaces through holes as small as a quarter, which makes it especially important to seal cracks from the outside.”

Rodents can cause health issues and also severe structural damage with their strong jaws and burrowing skills. They have oversized front teeth for gnawing, and teeth which are adapted for chewing a variety of items including electrical wires, water pipes and gas lines.

Here are a few common signs of a rodent infestation to tell customers to look out for:

  • Droppings: Rodent droppings are often left behind in places where food is stored, such as kitchen cabinets or pantries, under sinks, inside chewed cardboard boxes, along baseboards and on top of wall beams
  • Gnaw marks: Mice are known to bite through walls, wood and wires. The damage to wiring within walls can increase the risk of a house fire.
  • Nests: Rodents prefer to nest in dark, secluded areas where there is little chance of disturbance. Be on the lookout for shredded paper products, cotton, packing materials and other fabrics, as house mice like to build nests out of these materials.
  • Rub marks: Rats tend to leave dark grease or dirt marks along walls and floorboards as they follow a trail throughout the home between their nest and food.
  • Strange noises: Scurrying in the walls or in the attic could mean a rodent family is present. Rodents are especially fond of attics as it’s an insulated area for nest building.


About the Author

Ellen Wagner is a former digital editor for PMP magazine.

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