Hearing noises in your attic is one of the first indications of wildlife nesting in your home. Cleveland residents should call Critter Control of Cleveland right away if they suspect bats, squirrels, mice or raccoons are scurrying in their attic. We will inspect your home and remove the problem animal quickly. Call Critter Control of Cleveland today at 216.342.2316.

What is That Noise in My Attic?

Dark Attic in Cleveland Home with wildlife problemsAny number of noises in the attic can be unsettling for homeowners. Knowing which animal in the attic is making that strange noise will help you make a plan to stop the problem. So how do you know which noise belongs to which animal?

Raccoon In Attic Sounds

That large bump in the night coming from your attic was probably a raccoon. Raccoons average around 20 pounds, so they cause quite a ruckus. If you hear noises in the attic that sound too large to be a squirrel or mouse, the culprit is likely a raccoon. 

In addition to adult raccoons causing trouble, you may also hear noises in the attic from baby raccoons. When raccoons have kits, they are vocal. Adult raccoons have deep voices while their kits have high-pitched cries. 

Here are additional raccoon in the attic sounds:

  • Dragging
  • Thumping
  • Scratching
  • Whining

Raccoons are nocturnal, which means they are active at night. Hearing these sounds at night is another indication that they are raccoons versus diurnal animals. If you suspect raccoons in the attic, it's important to have them removed as quickly as possible as they cause a lot of damage with their latrines and dexterous paws. 

Rat and Mice Sounds

Scurrying or scratching in your ceiling is an indicator that you have mice or rats that have made their home in your attic. Scampering is another indicator.

Squirrels also make scurrying and scratching noises in the attic like mice and rats. You may want to distinguish whether a mouse or a squirrel is causing the noises in the attic. To do so, tap on the area of the wall or ceiling when you hear the sound. Mice will freeze in fear, while squirrels will start running around.

Rats and mice are nocturnal, so you will most likely hear them in the nighttime hours, while squirrels are diurnal, which means they are most active during the day. No matter which one of these critters in the attic you're facing, it's important to remove them as quickly as possible before they destroy insulation, chew wires, or make more of a mess than could be avoided. 

Squirrels In Attic Sound

Besides scratching and scurrying, you may know you have a squirrel in your ceiling by these other sounds:

  • Squeaking
  • Grunting
  • Barking
  • Rubbing
  • Chirping

Squirrels in the attic sound like busy, scurrying little animals. They are packing away food, making their nests, and doing it all as quickly as possible. You may also be able to hear them running in the ceiling or through the walls. Squirrels are most active during the day. 

Identifying Noises in the Attic

The type of noise you hear in your attic can direct you to which animal is causing the problem. 


If you hear scurrying in your attic, the culprit is likely a rodent. If you hear the scurrying during the day, you probably have a squirrel problem. If the scurrying comes at night, it could be from a nocturnal rodent in the attic like mice or rats. 


Thumping can be loud or soft depending on the animal making the noise. Loud or heavy thumping is probably from a raccoon.  If you hear quiet thumping, it could be bats, birds, or squirrels. Squirrels and birds are most active during the day, while bats will be heard thumping at night in your attic. 


Squeaking noises are likely coming from a rodent. Mice, rats, and squirrels all make squeaking noises. You can distinguish the animal based on what time you hear the squeaking noise. If you hear it during the day, you likely have a squirrel in the attic. If you hear squeaking in the evening or nighttime hours, the problem is probably coming from mice or rats. 

Vocal noises

Vocal noises like crying and mewing are usually from baby animals or birds. Baby raccoons make vocal noises like mews and cries. Bird chirping is easily distinguishable. If you hear buzzing, you likely have a bee, wasp, or hornet nest in the attic. 

Scratching in Attic

Scratching in the attic is a common sign of animals in the attic because animals are often making their beds and looking for food with their paws. Scratching in the attic is hard to mistake for anything else, so if you hear it, you can be sure there are critters in the attic that should be taken care of!

Get Animals Out of Your Cleveland Attic

Your attic is a perfect location for wildlife because they're looking for a cozy, safe area to stay out of the elements and away from predators. Homeowners in the Cleveland area often find squirrels, mice, raccoons, bats, and opossums in their attic. Damages that wild animals can cause include: 

  • Critters have a tendency to chew on electrical wires, ruin insulation, and dig holes in your walls.
  • If unattended, these problems can lead to serious problems such as electrical fires, water damage, and other hazardous issues. 

The best way to remove wildlife will depend upon which animal it is. Larger wildlife will typically involve professional trapping, while smaller animals like birds, mice, or bats will require a more delicate approach to eradicate them from your home. These are difficult tasks to perform as an inexperienced homeowner, so you should seek professional advice regarding wildlife in your attic. 

How to prevent animals from getting into your attic

Once you get the wildlife out of your attic, it's important to make sure they can't come back! That's where wildlife prevention comes in. Animals can squeeze into your Cleveland home through holes smaller than you think--mice can wiggle in through a hole the size of a dime! It's important to seal any potential entry points in your siding, soffit, and vents. 

If you have any loose siding or shingles, it's important to fix those as well. Raccoons will use the dexterity in their paws to rip off the loose area to make their way inside. 

Do not implement prevention methods until you're sure there are no wildlife in your home. If you accidentally lock animals in your home, they will create more damage trying to escape. This is especially dangerous if you lock baby animals in your home while the mother is out foraging. 

Full-Service Wildlife Removal Company 

If you hear odd noises in your attic, chances are there are unwanted critters in your home. The sooner we can address the problem, the easier it is to remove. Our skilled professionals will give you a free estimate, and we can answer any questions you have about wildlife in your attic. Don't hesitate to call our experts at Critter Control of Cleveland today!