How to Lure a Rat Out of Hiding – 5 Tips

Rodent Guide
Written By Rodent Guide

I believe in treating all creatures with respect. My mission is to ensure everyone understands how to protect their home from rodents without using cruel methods.

Rats are one of the most unwanted yet prevalent creatures known to coexist with man. Getting rats in your home can be very dangerous!

One of the things you can do to confirm the presence of rats in your home is to see them. Rats are expert hiders, though, and it is not uncommon to have a rat hiding in a house!

How do you lure a rat out of hiding? Let’s take a look.

Learning how to lure a rat out of hiding is crucial, especially when a battle between the two parties (human v rat) must be fought in your home.

How to Lure a Rat Out of Hiding

Why Is the Rat Hiding from Me?

Before you can understand how to lure rats out of hiding, you need to know why they are hiding in the first place, right?

The same reason a rat opts to hide from humans is that it would hide from a predator if it were still out in the wilderness.

Rats know that humans pose a real threat to them. While some humans are notoriously afraid of rats, so are they of humans. Rats are fairly intelligent, which means that they know what to do to stay away from predators, whether wild animals or humans.

5 Things You Can Do to Lure a Rat Out of Hiding

Like many other rodents, rats like to hide in places that are cool and dark. If you are looking for tips on luring a rat out of hiding, this infographic will help, with more details below.

5 Rules If You Want To Lure A Rat Out Of Hiding Infographic

Use Food

When you have a rat hiding in a house, food is your ultimate weapon in bringing it out! Rats are pretty simple creatures. They have very few needs. Food is one of the most important needs (as it is with most other living things).

If you need to lure a rat out of hiding, you should use some tasty food as rat bait. It doesn’t always have to be used in a trap. Bait is bait!

Leave The Area

Rats are scared of humans. To a rat, you are huge, so they will be very wary when you are in the general vicinity. So if you want to know how to get a rat to come out, you should disappear!

Leave the area for a better chance of luring a rat out of hiding.

Unfortunately, that means you will not see if the rat leaves its hiding place, but it will help lure it out.

If you can, try to withdraw as much as possible but stay close enough to see if the rat has come out of its hiding place.

Lay Down Nesting Material

Rats use tons of items to build their nest with—literally anything.

I used this to lure a rat out of hiding while I was on vacation (I know, I pick the best places to go!).

It started with a scream from my wife. I rushed in to find out what the issue was. She said she saw ‘a little aminal’ who ran away into the kitchen when she screamed. I know how the rat felt.

I needed to know what it was that she saw, so here is what I did:

  • I picked up a plastic bottle
  • I placed it on the kitchen floor
  • I Sat on the kitchen cabinets so the rat couldn’t see my feet
  • Stayed remarkably still

Within 5 minutes, a rat appeared from the corner of a kitchen cabinet. I stayed still. I wanted to see what it would do.

The rat tentatively scampered up the plastic bottle before dragging it behind the kitchen cabinet. The rat proceeded to chew the plastic bottle; incredible! I can only imagine it was using the material to help build the nest.

Luckily, this was during the last night of our vacation! With that in mind, if you want to know how to lure rats out of hiding, use nesting materials!

Stay Low Or High

By staying low, you show the rat that you are less of a threat.

If a rat needs to look up at you, it will be terrifying, right?

Lay down. Keep still. That will help you lure a rat out of hiding!

Alternatively, you can do what I did in the story above and stay high enough so they can’t see you!

Remove Any Threats

Remove any threats to the rat. While quite a few things prey on rats, one of the most common threats is a cat (after all, cats eat rats).

If you have a cat, make sure it is either outside or locked away in another room. If a rat smells the scent of a cat, it will be very tentative about coming out to see you. This is the rat’s self-preservation kicking in here.

Get the cat out of the room for a better chance of luring a rat out of hiding. In fact, get your cat out of the house if possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

frequently asked questions

Where do rats hide?

While you may not have given it much thought, the reality is that rats are all over. As long as there’s a human population, rats are lurking nearby. Common rat hiding spots include small openings beneath homes, terraces, outhouses, and next to gates. Indoor hiring spots include cramped crawl spaces and basements and in the middle of walls. Narrow spaces beneath tubs, cabinets, and closets are also a favorite.

Why do rats hide from humans?

Rats are cautious of humans and tend to view them like they do predators. This forces them to take steps to ensure they don’t get in the crosshairs of humans. Additionally, rats are nocturnal animals, which means that they will often come out of hiding during the hours you are least active.

How do you know if a rat is aggressive?

Aggression in rats manifests itself in numerous ways. For instance:
• A rat will start to chatter its teeth when it’s extremely angry
• It will begin hissing when it wants to make an attack
• A slapping tail means that it is annoyed and should always be viewed as a sign of danger
• An aggressive rat can also bear its teeth. Usually, the rat will reveal all its bottom teeth completely. You should always view this as an extreme sign of aggressiveness, as it’s often followed by a lunge and a quick bite.


The 5 steps above will help you if you need to know how to lure a rat out of hiding. I’ve personally used all of them to tempt a rat hiding in a house to come out.

I have been in the position where I needed to lure a rat out from underneath the kitchen cabinets, and it works! It absolutely can be done.

All you have to remember is they are scared of you, so you either need to get out of their line of vision or totally out of that area completely. Remain still, keep quiet, remove all dangers, and the rat will come out eventually!

Good luck.


About the Rodent Guide

I’m an expert in do-it-yourself rodent control. For more than 20 years, I’ve dedicated my life to helping people live harmoniously alongside these critters by sharing rodent control solutions that are effective and kind.

I believe in treating all creatures with respect. My mission is to ensure everyone understands how to protect their home from rodents without using cruel methods.

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