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Are cage traps a good option for rats?

If you wanted to take the most humane approach possible to removing your residential or commercial property of rats, you would be forgiven to think that live cage traps were the best possible solution. This isn't the case, however, and we would always strongly recommend considering snap traps as your first method of choice. If you are sure that you want to use live cage traps, on the other hand, there are a few things that you should know …

1 - Rats that you release back into the wild will seldom survive. These rats live in houses, commercial properties, and abandoned buildings now. They sometimes live in sewers. They aren't well adapted to the great outdoors, that's for sure, and although they can survive, they probably won't. All of a sudden they will be up against a whole bunch more predators than it was before, and it no longer has the safety of a home. It won't know where food or water is, and it will need to ensure that it finds shelter as soon as possible, not only to protect it from the weather elements, but also from predators.

There is a good chance that a released rat will die.

2 - Rats have a tendency to throw themselves around when they get stressed, and if they do this in a cage trap, there is a good chance that the rodent will seriously injure itself. When the rat is seriously injured, it is fair game to any predators, and even other rats. Once again, the released rat will probably die. Those cage traps are far too stressful for these creatures. They are very sociable creatures, and they won't like being alone for long. They don't appreciate being hungry either, something they'll more than likely be if they have been in the cage for some time.

There is a good chance that trapped rat will injure itself.

3 - When you are in close proximity to a rat, you are putting yourself in danger. In some cases, you could be putting yourself in very grave danger. Rats are well known to carry and transmit a wide range of diseases, some of which can affect the humans in your house or building, and some of them can affect other animals too - cats, dogs, guinea pigs, rabbits, etc., and even as far as farm animals too.

There is a good chance the trapped rat will carry or transit a dangerous virus, either on its body, or in its saliva, urine or feces.

4 - Rats will attack if they are cornered. They would much rather run away and hide, of course, as they know they are no match for an animal as large as an adult human. If they are in a trap, however, they cannot run and scurry away. Instead, they have one option - fight. If they do not fight, they will be killed. Why else would the adult human have them in a cage? They are not aware that you intend to release them back into the wild again, and even if they were, they certainly wouldn't appreciate being turfed out of their home.

There is a good chance that the trapped rat will attack you if you come too close.
There are a great number of reasons why cage traps, and other "humane" traps, are not a good idea. These are just a few of them, but aren't they enough? Snap traps work, combined with a sealing mission. Live traps just put yourself, and the rest of your family, in danger.

Read more articles about rats:
How to make a rat trap
Is it legal for me to trap a rat?
Humane rat traps
How to get rid of rats without killing them
What are some humane ways to kill a rat?
What should I do with a rat after I catch it?

For more rat information, visit our rat removal tips page, or for more specific how-to instructions, read the how to get rid of rats page with 6 step-by-step instructions. If you have a problem with rats above your ceiling in your house, read my rats in the attic guide. The most important part of rat control is sealing shut entry holes into the building, but after you've done that, you'll want to know how to kill rats humanely to complete the rat control job. If you need to hire professional help in your city, click on my directory of over 200 rat removal companies servicing 95% of the USA. we can help your with your rat problem!
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