How to Make a Humane Rat Trap


Although there are many lethal ways to get rid of rats, such as spring-loaded traps and poison, some owners prefer to get rid of these pests through humane means. This entails trapping the rat in a humane manner so it remains alive and unharmed and can be relocated to a more suitable area. Such a trap is easy to make, and it requires a few simple materials found in most households.

Things You'll Need

  • Cardboard paper towel roll or plastic soda bottle
  • Tall kitchen garbage can with removable lid
  • Plastic trash bag
  • Peanut butter

Making a Humane Rat Trap

  • Prepare a "tunnel piece" for the trap. Depending on the size of the rats that have invaded your home, you may need to take a liter soda bottle and cut off the ends to create a tube. If the rats are small enough to fit into a cardboard paper towel roll, you can use that instead without any preparation.

  • Smear some peanut butter at one end of the tunnel piece. This will act as the bait. Contrary to popular belief, rats are not overly fond of cheese. Peanut butter is more attractive to them and will stick in place, while a piece of cheese could fall out.

  • Place a kitchen-style garbage can under a counter or table in an area where you've spotted evidence of rats. The can should be tall and have a smooth interior, such as plastic, so the rat cannot climb up the sides. Do not line the can with a bag, as the rat might be able to grip the bag and use it to climb out.

  • Balance the tunnel piece on the edge of the counter so the end containing the peanut butter extends out over the garbage can. Position it so it will tip when the rat enters to get the bait and fall into the garbage can. Rats are not afraid of enclosed spaces and will usually not have any fear of entering the tube.

  • When a rat enters the trap and falls into the garbage can, immediately cover it with a lid. You have now humanely trapped the rat and can dispose of it in the manner of your choice.

Tips & Warnings

  • You may need to put something on either side of the tube to keep it from rolling out of position. Place it carefully so it will keep the tube in place but will not prevent it from tipping into the trash can when the rat enters.

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  • Photo Credit Photo: Wikimedia Commons
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