A squirrel caused thousands of dollars in damage to an Atlanta home

ATLANTA (WSB/Cox/CNN) - A family came back from vacation to find a mess in their home.

When Kari Drees and her husband were out of town for the holidays, the alarm in their Buckhead home went off.

“We had a friend come check it out, and our doors and windows were intact, so we just thought it was a software issue,” she said.

When the family got home from vacation, they opened the front door and immediately realized something was wrong.

The house was in disarray. The faucet was even on in the kitchen, so they figured someone had burglarized them. It turns out that was far from the case.

“We started to see droppings around the house,” Drees said, and eventually, they found a squirrel nesting in a couch.

They think he came in through the fireplace and got stuck.

“It seems like he was trying to make his way out of the house. So, he started chewing every window, every door just trying to get out,” Drees said.

Widespread wood damage was found throughout the home. Drees estimated it'll cost thousands to fix.

“You would think insurance would cover you for something like this,” she said.

After an adjuster from Mercury Insurance came by, he denied the claim, citing an exclusion for rodents and vermin.

“Insurance is supposed to provide a sense of security and it’s turning into that it’s not providing that sense of security with us.” Drees said.

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