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How to kill rats fast

Updated April 17, 2017

When rats wage war on your home, it is time to take fast action with a series of strategic manoeuvres. The art of rat trapping is more of a skill than some people may think. You first need to gain the rats' trust by treating them to peanut butter. Once they come back for more, you literally set the trap and snap the necks of your unwanted house guests.

Search your home with a flashlight for rat activity. Look for urine, droppings, black smudges on walls and gnawing. Inspect your home from the outside and then work your way indoors. Closely observe doorways, thresholds, windows and drain spouts. Finding where the rats are coming into your home can help you strategically place the traps to kill the rats fast.

Purchase rat traps. These are much safer than poison baits and they provide quick results. They also allow you to dispose of the dead rat quicker and easier. They are also more sanitary. If poisoned, rats often crawl into areas to die. You might not be able to find them, and the smell can be atrocious.

Set out approximately one dozen traps in a home with a high rat population.

Bait the traps with dollops of peanut butter. Don't set them, but place them around the home at the locations with lots of rat evidence. Let the rats enjoy the peanut butter for a few days. It is their last meal. You want to let the rats feel comfortable with the traps. They quickly learn to stay away if they see a fellow rat die in the trap. But if you convince them it is a serving platter, they might keep seeing it that way.

Set the traps carefully. Note that the spring could break your fingers. Ensure that children and pets can't access them.

Check the traps every morning or when you hear one go off. Quickly dispose of the rat so the other rats don't see and learn that the traps are dangerous. Wear rubber gloves when dealing with ratted traps. Thoroughly wash your hands.

Things You'll Need

  • Flashlight
  • Rat traps
  • Peanut butter
  • Rubber gloves
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About the Author

Phillip Woolgar has been a reporter since 2008 in communities throughout western Canada. His work has appeared in Canadian national publications such as the "Globe and Mail" and the "Vancouver Sun." In 2009, he received second-place recognition in the Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association's Excellence in Arts and Culture writing category. Woolgar graduated from the Langara College Journalism Diploma program in 2008.