Humane rat traps

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Believe it or not, there are so many different types of rat and mouse trap these days, that the market itself can actually be a little confusing. With so many different options being thrown at you, and so many snippets of information, it can be hard to know what to pick. Should you use poisons? How about “humane” live cage traps? You once heard a neighbor talk about using glue traps, what are they? And do they work?



In fact, let’s start with those …

Glue Traps

To start with, it’s safe to say that these glue traps are NOT humane. They are very sticky strips that are usually placed along the edge of the floor, where it meets the walls, and they aim to stop the rat or mouse in its tracks … quite literally.

The rat or mouse may very well get stuck, even without the need for bait, but then you have a problem on your hands. What are you going to do with it now? You have a rodent that is probably still alive in your hands, and you’ll need to find a humane way to kill it, and then dispose of the entire thing. Then you'll need to start all over again, because very rarely will you have just one rat in your home. You will almost always find that one rat means an entire colony of them. They reproduce super fast, and they attract other rats with the pheromones found in their urine too. Just making sure that you know that.

Available as a single sticky pad, or in packs of 2 or 4, they are inexpensive, but they are possibly one of the worst options. We would highly recommend that you do not buy or use these.

Live Cage Traps

There are quite a few different types of these on the market, often classed to be a humane way of trapping and removing animals. In theory, it is a very humane approach. You do not intend to harm the animal in any way. In practice, however, things might be a little different.

When a rat is captured, whether it is via a glue strip trap or a live cage trap, they will struggle, chew, throw themselves around, and whatever else it takes. This is all in a desperate bid for freedom. In the case of glue traps, rats and mice have been known to chew through their own arms and legs to try and break free, and rats have done some serious damage to themselves in live cage traps, both big ones and small ones alike.

On top of this, rats that are relocated / rehomed somewhere in the wild very rarely survive. There's a good chance they'll be killed within a few days, either of starvation because they were unable to find a new source of food, or because they fell victim to a predator. Dogs are often a rat's biggest threats, but cats and humans come close behind too.

That humane approach doesn’t seem quite so humane now, does it?

Snap Traps

In reality, although snap traps will result in the rat’s death, they are the best approach when you have a rat infestation. There are disadvantages to using these, of course, just as there are with any other method of wild animal removal, but when all of the options are weighed-up, these traps simply come out best. When the right traps are used - rat traps for rats, for example, and mouse traps for mice - they are very effective, killing the critter instantly, and not making too much of a mess either. You know where the animal is when it dies, unlike with poison, and it's also instant, again, unlike with poison. It’s humane in the sense that the rat doesn't need to suffer, and it's also the easiest to deal with when you're the one trying to clean up the mess. With poison, the animal will often take weeks to die, and in that time they will have found a nice cosy spot very deep in your home to curl up. Guess who’s going to need to find that cosy spot. That's right … You.

There might be a lot of traps to choose from on the market, but snap traps are the best ones. Give them all a try if you like, you’ll soon see what we mean …

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If you have any questions or comments, e-mail me at david@attic-rat.com