According to the Department of Health, rodents bite around 100 New Yorkers each year. Does that statistic sound comfortingly low to you? Bad news: the number only takes into account incidents reported to emergency-room doctors and the DoH website. That means we have no idea how many scores of people have done what we would do if we ever found ourselves the victim of a vermin attack, which is immediately black the whole thing out.
There are still plenty of horror stories to go around, though.
Jimmy Tallman of Magic Exterminating said he was called to a Bronx apartment where rats attacked a child. “They were getting into a crib and they bit on a baby’s toes,” he said. Rats sometimes climb right into a baby’s crib and suck milk out of bottles, he said.
Oh, and then there are these little tales:
In 2005, a 3-year-old girl in the Bronx was chomped on the back when a rat crawled through a shower tile, according to reports.
Another time, in Long Island, a rat nosed into a parrot’s cage and ate the bird, Tallman said.
Once again, we’re forced to ask ourselves the age-old question: How soon until the rats chew us all to death and take the city for themselves? Well, the experts say we’ll be allowed to continue to exist in their dark little shadows for a while more, provided we stay out of the way: “They’re just attracted to the food, and gnaw on a human by accident, for the most part,” says exterminator Michael Morales. So, readers, this is another reminder not to leave any snacks lying around your house — like, say, your parrot. Babies, it seems, are just out of luck.