We receive more panicked phone calls for a bat in my house at night than at any other type of call. It’s understandable though. For the majority of people who’ve never dealt with a bat in the house or even seen one in the wild, it can be panic inducing especially when roused from a sound sleep by it.

While it can be disconcerting to find a bat in my house at night, we hope you can at least find some comfort in the fact that bats being active at night is normal. If you find an active bat in your house during the middle of the day, it’s actually much more concerning.

So, what do you do when there is a bat in your house in the middle of the night?

Stay Calm, Follow These Bat Removal Instructions

One of the most critical things you need to figure out first is if ANY PERSON or ANY PETS have come into contact with the bat. This needs to be assessed quickly to decide what you need to do next. In the event you are unsure, follow the instructions for contact. Better safe than sorry.

There WAS Contact With the Bat

  • Capture the bat! Do not let it out of your sight if at all possible. This bat will need to be turned over to the state vet’s office for rabies testing. There are various methods to capture it depending on your comfort level. No matter how you do this, we recommend you wear long sleeves, pants, and thick leather gloves while doing it.
    • When it’s landed, throw a bucket or small trash can over it and slide a piece of cardboard under the edge to contain it. Flip it right side up. The bat won’t be able to climb the slick sides of the bucket. If it makes you more comfortable, you can put something over the opening of the bucket.
    • When the bat has landed throw a towel over top of it. It won’t be able to fly from under it, but you will want to grab it (in the towel) pretty quick. You’ll have to place it in a plastic or metal container. Some people even throw them in a piece of tupperware with a lid.
    • You can ATTEMPT to catch it mid flight with a butterfly net or something like that. It is pretty difficult to do. Plus, you then have to get it out of the net and into a container.
  • Once caught, you will need to submit the bat in my house at night for rabies testing. How to accomplish this will vary by location. You can call your local animal control (sometimes just the sheriff’s office) and ask them if they will come get it. Some will, some won’t. If they won’t collect it for testing, they may have the phone number for who you need to contact. If they don’t, next call the local humane society. They won’t be able to collect it, but they may know the drop off locations. Many drop off locations are local vets offices and they can take it from there. Should the humane society not know, call a local veterinarian. If all else fails, Google “get a bat tested for rabies near me”.
  • If the bat was killed during capture or dies soon after from stress, you will need to put it in the fridge (Do not put it in the freezer) for specimen preservation. The brain tissue has to be examined so don’t crush the head. Since bats are so small, they start to decay quickly. If you do not put it in the fridge, there may not be anything left to test by the time it gets to the lab.

There WAS NOT Contact With the Bat

There is no need to “catch” the bat unless it just won’t go out. Use airflow to help the bat find a way out.

  • Open a door or unscreened window for the bat to feel fresh airflow.
  • Turn the lights down. Some recommend turning the lights off, but for me personally I want to see it go outside and I can’t do that in the pitch black. I’ve even seen this done with all the lights in the room on, but it is a longer process as the lights disorient the bats.
  • If the bat just won’t fly outside and you have to catch and release, just follow the steps above making sure to have on long sleeves, pants, and thick leather gloves. Do not let it go if during the catch process you have skin contact with the bat or think it bit you through your clothing. If you catch it and everything goes smoothly, just let it go outside.

I Couldn’t Catch the Bat and I’m Not Sure About Contact

Please consult your health professional right away. You may need to undergo a course of rabies shots. The CDC recommends rabies shots if the bat was in the room with an unsupervised child, anyone with mental disabilities, or anyone impaired by alcohol or drugs.

Wait, What Does a Bat in my House at Night Mean Though?

There is more than one answer to that question, however, it is highly likely that you have a colony of bats living somewhere in the house with you. We highly recommend you contact us so we can discuss your individual situation.

There are things you can do yourself to see if you have a bat infestation. We are happy to go over the things you can do and the things you shouldn’t do yourself. If you know you have a bat infestation, set up an inspection with us. We will get you a customized proposal to get the bats out completely. Call our customer service at 877-264-2287 or click the link below for us to call you.

colony of bats

We hope you had great success with getting the bat in my house at night out of your house! And if it was a frightening experience, don’t let it happen again. Call today.

Your local bat removal expert,

Michael Koski

Get Bats Out Owner and President Michael Koski
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  • Alexa

    August 21, 2023 | Reply

    I woke up at 3 a.m. to a flutter and scratching in my curtains of my bedroom. I sat up quickly alert and about 30 seconds later a bat flew out into my bedroom. I screamed and left my room immediately and fled to the downstairs to sleep. I'm pretty scared right now and believe there may also be bats in my attic. What should I do?

    • Tori Bruce

      August 22, 2023 | Reply

      I'm sorry you are scared, bats in the attic are not what anyone wants. So, a one time bat in the house can sometimes be just that... a one time thing. One time events can happen if you had doors or windows open at any point or even a cat or dog can bring them in and let them go. But, if you have had a bat in the house before, or if you regularly hear noise in the walls/ceiling in the same place, at the same time, or if you see guano (looks like mouse poop) or smell guano (smells like musty-ammonia) then you very likely have an infestation. Please call our customer service office if you need more help (877-264-2287). If you think you were asleep while the bat was in your room, please call your doctor for advice.

  • Mayra

    August 6, 2023 | Reply

    I was just in my living room watching tv when I noticed my dog consistently looking at the ceiling. I look up and it’s a very small bat. I googled ways to get it out but my windows have a screen and I can’t open them. I noticed it is mainly in the living room, so how can I be sure it would fly out of the door? I placed my dog inside the room with me.

    • Tori Bruce

      August 8, 2023 | Reply

      There isn't a guarantee that the bat will fly out the door, but unless it is a baby or sick, it would much rather be out catching bugs at night than being in your house. If you are worried that it is still inside, you could call your local animal control. Hopefully this is a one time event, but if you see more in your living space, you may have a bigger issue on your hands.

  • Jackie

    August 2, 2022 | Reply

    We were gone for the long weekend and came back during the day. Nothing amiss. I got up at 10pm to use the washroom and open up some (screened windows) in the bedrooms upstairs. A bat flew by my head in the dark. I closed myself in my room and it was in the hall. I searched for it for two hours. Kept my room closed up. Couldn’t find it. Can’t find it today either. What do I do???!!!

    • Tori Bruce

      August 4, 2022 | Reply

      I'm sorry to hear that! Your county animal control or sheriff may come out and help. It is likely hiding and sleeping and will become active again at dusk.

  • Nikky

    October 19, 2020 | Reply

    I find a bat in my room and all the windows and door are closed, but I didn't sleep in that room, when I came bk into the room few hours later, I didn't see the bat again... Where did the bat go out from? Does it recognize the same way it entered ?

    • Tori Bruce

      October 19, 2020 | Reply

      I'm sorry you had a bat in your room, it was good thinking to not sleep in that room. It is possible that it found it's way back to where it came in. However, it is more likely that it is hiding somewhere in the room. They can get very tiny when they aren't using their wings. They prefer spots higher up, maybe behind curtains etc. but I would thoroughly inspect everywhere.

  • Angel

    October 19, 2019 | Reply

    Do you think the bat in my bedroom, symbolizes something??

    • Tori Bruce

      October 21, 2019 | Reply

      I don't personally think it symbolizes anything, but it could be a sign that you have a bat colony living in or near your house.

  • Angel

    October 19, 2019 | Reply

    Hey. Im from the Philippines. I was sleeping around 10 pm and suddenly my volleyball fell and woke me up because of the sound. Then I realized there is somethinh crawling under my bed and when I searched for it, I found a bat. So because I was afraid and kind of sleepy I decided to left it there and just deal with it tomorrow. My bedroom is all close. The door and the windows. I think he can't get out. I will just deal witj it tomorrow. However, do you think I made the right decision?? ??

    • Tori Bruce

      October 21, 2019 | Reply

      It's never a good idea to be asleep in the same room as a bat. There is the chance it carries rabies and it could bite you while you're asleep. Sometimes their bites are very tiny and barely noticeable. A better idea would have been to put something over it... like a plastic container and then you could have waited to deal with it until morning.

  • Miguel

    August 23, 2019 | Reply

    I just came home and saw a at hanging from the ceiling. I lefy the door and window open can I sleep even if he is still in the room

    • GetBatsOut

      August 23, 2019 | Reply

      If you know a bat is in the room, I wouldn't recommend it. Bats do sometimes fly out and people don't notice it. I would have a chat with your doctor and let them know what happened if you have any concerns.

  • Nicole

    July 1, 2019 | Reply

    How much is it to get an estimate on how much it will cost to get them out?

    • GetBatsOut

      July 1, 2019 | Reply

      Our prices are not set. They vary depending on the size, construction, and condition of the building. We certainly can't charge a homeowner with a 1,200 square foot home the same rate as someone with a 7,000 square foot home. For a better estimate, call and chat with our customer service at 877-264-2287. They are more than happy to go over your issue, gather a little information, and then get you a better ballpark. They can even set up an inspection for you if you are ready to move forward.

  • Levente

    June 22, 2019 | Reply

    There is a bat living in my blinds cavity. It's annoying at night and there are always bat droppings on my window sill, there are no contacts made with the bat, and i need instructions how to get it out.

    • GetBatsOut

      June 25, 2019 | Reply

      Is the bat inside the house or outside the house? I'm not quite certain from what you've described. Can you call our customer service at 877-264-2287 to discuss and clarify?

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