Hillingdon has been named as the west London borough with the largest rat problem. According to data collected from eight councils in the west London area, almost 3,500 complaints of rat sightings were made to local councils over the last 12 months.

The Rat Stats: West London

The statistics detailed the number of calls made to local authorities in west London to report rat problems over the past year. The boroughs were ranked from the most number of calls to the least, with Hillingdon sitting at the top with nearly 1000 calls, and Kensington and Chelsea at the bottom with only 161 calls. Westminster declined to provide information.

Hillingdon 930
Ealing 733
Hounslow 647
Harrow 464
Brent 356
Hammersmith and Fulham 183
Kensington and Chelsea 161
Westminster No data available


The constituency of Hayes and Harlington has been dubbed the ‘rat capital’ of west London, with more calls to reports rats made here than in the whole of Kensington and Chelsea from January to November 2016.

Hounslow ranked third, after Ealing in second place, at the same time as news reports were published telling of huge rat problems around Hounslow flats due to bins not being collected for five weeks.

Tips on Rat Control From Top Dog Pest Control

These statistics come as no surprise to Top Dog Pest Control, given regular call outs to these areas of west London. Here, our rat control experts have put together some top tips on rat control.

  • Early detection is key. Signs that rats have gained access to your London property can be droppings, evidence of gnawing and scratching sounds behind cupboards, under floorboards or inside walls. Signs of rats around the exterior of your property can include burrowing, tracks and evidence of nesting.

  • Holes in the exterior of your property need to prevent rats from using them as entry points. Usual areas for holes are faulty or old airbricks, around piping and beneath or beside doors.
  • Keep all food in the kitchen in sealed containers where possible to limit smells.
  • Clear away food leftovers immediately.
  • Make sure all bins, inside and outside, are fitted with tight fitting lids.
  • Check tenancy agreements to determine who is responsible for keeping common areas clean and calling in pest control if a rodent issue does arise.

Danger of Rats

Rats are not only unpleasant to have around your London property, but they carry many dangers along with them, including a variety of serious diseases. Once rats have gained entry to a building, contamination of food with droppings, urine or hair is very likely, which can lead to humans contracting the potentially fatal Weil’s disease.

Structural damage is also a risk as rats gnaw on anything from plastic to wood and even some types of metal. Left untreated, your London property could face extensive damage that is costly to repair.

Author: This article was written by Dean Mannion, Senior Pest Control Technician for Top Dog Pest Control who provide London pest control services. 

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