How to Set a Snare Fox Trap

Updated February 21, 2017

Snares for catching animals are made from lightweight metal cable. The snare has a metal swivel on the end to keep the cable from twisting and breaking from a fighting animal. The snare has a locking device that the cable is run through to form the loop. The loop can be adjusted to any size, but once the loop has closed around the animal, the lock will not allow the loop to be forced open. Unlike steel trap sets that lure a fox into them, snares are set in trails that they follow, catching them as they pass through.

Locate trails that fox are using. Tracks in dirt, mud or snow and worn paths through fields and wooded areas indicate a regular path used by foxes. Find a spot on the trail where the fox has to pass through brush or a narrow opening between bushes or trees.

Open the snare loop to an 8-inch-diameter loop. Run a double strand of rebar wire through the end swivel and hold the snare up so the loop will be 10 to 12 inches above the ground. Wire the swivel to a tree or solid object above the set.

Position the snare loop in the centre of the trail so the lock is either to one side or at the top. Hold the loop in place by tying the two sides of the loop to branches on either side of the trail using a single strand of cotton thread for each.

Narrow down a trail that is too wide by pushing sticks into the ground on either side of the trail. The snare loop can be tied to the sticks. Push small branches in alongside the sticks to make the trail look natural.

Dip a dry twig into a bottle of fox lure and place it to the side of the trail 2 feet down the trail from the snare. Place a second twig of lure up the trail from the snare. This will give the fox a reason to keep moving along the trail and keep its mind on the scent and not notice the snare.


Boil the grease off new snares and dye them black with logwood crystals before setting them out. Unnatural odours will scare a fox away from the snare. Dyeing snares black makes them blend into the trail surroundings. Approach the trail from the side; do not walk on the trail to set the snare. Keep the trail completely natural. If there is snow on the ground, brush out your footprints before you leave the set. Use only cotton thread that will break easily, never nylon or string. The thread is only to hold the snare in place until the fox gets into it. The thread must break easily to release the loop so it can close. Snares, lure and logwood crystals can be purchased from trapper supply stores.


Locking snares kill the animal they capture. Do not set snares where pets or non-target animals will get into them. Know the local trapping regulations and obtain the proper license and permits to trap. Snare trapping falls under the same rules as steel traps.

Things You'll Need

  • Locking snares
  • Rebar wire
  • Cotton thread, black
  • Fox lure
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About the Author

Dave P. Fisher is an internationally published and award-winning Western novelist and short-story writer. His work has appeared in several anthologies and his nonfiction articles in outdoor magazines. An avid outdoorsman, Fisher has more than 40 years of experience as a hunter, trapper, fisherman, taxidermist, professional fly-tyer, horsepacker and guide.