Councillor Amy McQuaid-England City of Oshawa and Region of Durham

City Should Tackle Rat Problem

Amy will be moving a motion at the Corporate Services Committee on October 2 to have the city address its growing rat problem.

The motion calls for the city to immediately start to track inquiries and complaints made to Service Oshawa about rats. It also asks for staff to create a communication plan to help residents understand they can call Service Oshawa when there are dead rats on their property to receive assistance for proper disposal to limit the potential spread of disease. Lastly, it asks staff to investigate potential ways to assist residents and neighbourhoods that have significant rat problems by exploring models other cities use for rodent extermination and for the cost of this to be presented in the 2018 budget submissions.

While Oshawa isn’t overrun with rats currently, without action, the problem could become worse. Experts say that two rats can grow to 15,000 within a year. These rodents can carry mites and fleas and spread diseases such as salmonella and leptospirosis.

Right now, the city doesn’t have a record of the Service Oshawa inquiries and complaints related specifically to rats. This means council doesn’t have any data on areas where rat populations could be growing and become a much bigger problem in the future.

If you’ve experienced a problem with rats, it’s important to let council know your concerns and experiences. You can send an email to and CC detailing your experiences and request that it be added as a correspondence for the next Corporate Services meeting. If you’d like to speak at the meeting (Monday October 2, 9:30 a.m.), please ensure you ask for a delegation request.