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What Is the Easiest Way to Kill a Trapped Rat?

Discovering a rat caught in a trap yet still alive can be a disconcerting and emotionally challenging experience. While the primary goal is often to remove the rodent, the situation demands careful and humane handling to minimize stress and suffering for both the rat and yourself.

If a rat is caught in a trap and still alive, it’s important to handle the situation humanely and cautiously. First, put on a pair of gloves for hygiene and safety. Approach the trap slowly to avoid startling the rat further. Carefully place a cloth or towel over the trap to help calm the animal. Once the trap is covered, gently pick it up, making sure not to jostle it, and transport the trapped rat to a location far away from your home. Open the trap to release the rat, pointing it away from you. Always consult your local laws and guidelines about the appropriate distance and locations for releasing trapped wildlife.

How To Dispose of a Live Rat?

The most important element of disposing of a live rat from the trap is to wear protective gear. This will prevent the rat from hurting you or transmitting any diseases. Rats get aggressive when they feel threatened.

If you want to release it, here are the steps: 

  1. Put on some strong, thick gloves and remove the rat from the trap.
  2. Put the rat in a cage. 
  3. Find a secluded area far away from your home and any other homes.
  4. Put the cage on the ground, open the door, and stand back.
  5. Wait for the rat to find its way out and leave, and then take the cage.

This is a completely humane way to get rid of a trapped rat, and it works best for people who don’t have the stomach to kill it. If you do want to dispose of it quickly, you can kill the rat as well. Stay away from methods that cause more suffering and go for a quick one or do it by using an anesthetic like chloroform that will kill it in high dosages but won’t cause much pain. More on that below. 

What to Do When a Rat is Stuck in a Trap But Still Alive?

When you catch a rat in a trap, there are several things you can do about it. Here are some of the best methods of getting rid of a rat stuck in a trap:

  • Take it to the vet. If the rat is still alive but hurt, you can do the kind thing and take it to the vet. They could fix them up, sterilize them, and then you could release them into the wild. This is the most humane way to handle things. Keep in mind that it will cost you some money, and it will take some time out of your day. This option may not be for everyone, but for those who don’t have the heart to kill the creature, it works best. 
  • Just let it go. Another option is to omit the vet from your list and take the rat directly into the wild. Release it from its cage and forget about it. Make sure that it’s far away from your home and that you are wearing protective gear. 
  • Kill the rat. If you don’t want to go through the trouble of doing either of these things, you can just kill the rat — the humane way. Either do it quickly or use chloroform or carbon dioxide if you can find these chemicals. It might require some research, and you have to do it properly to avoid prolonging the rat’s suffering. 
  • Call in the pros. If you are not comfortable dealing with rats, you can always call in pest control to handle the rat. They will know what to do, and they will prevent you or anyone in your household from getting hurt. 
  • Take it to a humane society in your area. If your rat is still alive in its trap, another way to deal with it is to take it to a local humane organization, if one exists in your area. They will do what’s best for the rat and deal with it in a humane way. 

How to Humanely Kill a Rat Stuck in a Trap?

There are several methods you can use to kill a rat stuck in a trap. For one, you can use one of the quicker methods like: 

  • Whacking the rat
  • Stomping on the rat
  • Breaking their neck (or decapitating)

The benefits of these methods are that they are really fast, the rat will die almost instantly (if you do it well), and it won’t suffer a lot. There are, of course, other methods which include:

  • Poisoning 
  • Drowning 
  • Freezing

These methods can last a lot longer and cause the rat tremendous pain and suffering, but people are more comfortable with them because they don’t see any blood. Keep in mind that poisoning is not recommended because another animal might eat the dead rat and die from those effects. 

Freezing, on the other hand, has to be done after administering some sort of anesthetic gas that will put the rat to sleep. Drowning is easy, but not that humane since it will take a while for the rat to die. Avoid these methods whenever possible. If you want to and can find a way to get the necessary chemicals, you can use chloroform or carbon dioxide. These will act as an anesthetic, and it won’t be as painful. 

A quicker way to kill it is to whack it, stomp on it or decapitate it. For any of these methods, you should remove the rat from the trap, secure it in a bag, or a similar container — not a cage or anything sturdy because you won’t be able to do it — and wear protective equipment. 

Then, choose your method. To whack them, hold the bag with the rat in the air or secure it to the ground, pick something hard to hit them with, and make sure that you are precise — otherwise, it won’t be as quick or humane. 

You can perform stomping on them while they are still in the trap — although, wear heavy shoes to make it quicker and safer. Finally, you can decapitate them with some sort of a blade that you have on hands. You can also do this while they are in the trap or by taking them out of it and securing it to the ground. 

Keep in mind that none of these methods are completely humane. They will cause pain to the rat. The best and most humane way to kill the rat is to get good snap traps that will snap the rat’s neck as soon as they place their head on the bait. Of course, if you don’t have one of those, you can pick another method that works for you. 

What’s The Best Way To Get Rid of a Trapped Rat?

There are several ways to get rid of a rat, and some of them have been covered in the points above. Here they are:

  • Release it into the wild
  • Take it to the vet to fix their injuries
  • Kill them (whack it, stomp on it, use gas or any other killing method)

However, none of these ways are completely safe for you or for others, not to mention the humane aspect. 

For example, if you opt to release it, it will make even more baby rats that will bother other people, and that big rat will find their way into someone else’s home. It might be humane, but it’s not effective since you’re just making more problems. 

If you opt to kill it, this ordeal can prove dangerous to you. A trapped rat can and will bite. It’s also not very humane since you’ll have to do it yourself. Stomping on them or whacking them may be quick, but it’s still painful, and killing them with gas can last for a very long time. Plus, you’ll have a lot to clean up after you’re done. 

Copyright article owner is for this article. This post was first published on May 16, 2020.

Instead, you could take the high road and kill two birds with one stone. To do this, you’ll need to sterilize the rat and then release it into the wild. It won’t make any more babies, and you won’t have to kill it. Make sure that you release it somewhere far away from any homes. 

Of course, this is not the answer for some people since you might not want to invest that much time into just one pest. So, another way to get rid of them quickly is any method that results in instant death.

Final Thoughts

If you have a rat caught in a trap, consider some of these solutions. Pick one that works well for you, whether it’s the most humane one — sterilize and release — or the ones that rely on killing it. 

In the future, to ensure that you don’t have to deal with this problem, try to purchase high-quality, strong snap traps that can kill the rat the moment its head is in place. This will be quick, and you won’t have to deal with it. 

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