So, I was re-arranging the coop yesterday and I have a Dog House in the coop. I had moved it and was surprised to see a Momma Rat & babies staring back at me. Of couse I wasnt prepared for any of this and only managed to grab 2 of the babies and get them out of the coop. They were more like teenagers and still moved pretty quickly burrowing in the 6-8 inches of pine shavings. The mom was long gone. I have been reading up on things to try to get rid of them but would like to know what has worked well for others. I do have cats that do catch mice & rats (they thought to come bring it to me, yuck) but since these are living in the coop, they cant get to them. Heck, they have everything they need right there, food, water, warmth! I do have to tell you we converted a stall in the barn into a coop. It has a cement floor. I am sure there must be a place the Mom is getting in and out but I want to keep them out. I have chicks that will soon be ready for the coop and do not want to put them in until they are out of course. I will have to look for spaces the rats are getting in through to the coop area. Do those electronic repellent things work? That would be the ideal solution but I really have my doubts they really work. (A friend swears they do) Poison is not an option because of the chickens free ranging and of course the barn cats. If I can locate these little buggers again, and get them out, does the Cayenne pepper work? I would have to get them out first because if I sprinkle it around, it would keep them in, I am sure. Do the chickens go after the cayenne pepper and will it harm them in any way if they eat it? Also, the buckets with the hole big enough for the rats to get into is another great idea, because the chickens cant get to the poison inside either. Do you think I can keep these in the coop to attract the rats that are in the coop without any harm to the chickens? Gosh, I just dont want to have a chicken accidentally get into something and that is why the poison scares me. Any other ideas???? I also forgot to ask if the brillo pads will hurt the chickens? I had people had used these to keep rats out but would they hurt a chickens if they pecked at them?