Mouse Traps v Poison Mouse Control Comparison

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.

What is the best way to kill mice in your home? Snap traps or poison?

Here we look at mouse traps v poison and compare the pros and cons so you can decide which option to go for.

If you are here, then you have probably heard some noises in your attic or have seen and heard other evidence that you have a mouse (or maybe mice) in your home. First things first, do not panic.

Commonly, a mouse has found its way into your home. There are many ways a mouse can enter your home because it only needs a hole small enough to fit its head through!

Mouse Traps v Poison – The Best Option For Mouse Control


Mouse trap effective dead mouse in box
Always consider how effective the mouse trap will be; otherwise, you might have to deal with a live Mouse!

Here we check out the effectiveness of each trap because you want to use the most effective method for getting rid of mice in your home.

Mouse Traps

Mouse traps are very effective, and they are the most common way of catching mice.

The working of a snap trap is pretty simple. First, you load the trap with bait that will attract mice, place the snap trap down, and set it.

The bait will draw mice, and there are many bait options to apply to the trap to ensure a successful mouse capture.

As soon as the mouse steps on the trigger, the trap fires, and the mouse is killed instantly or severely injured.

It is not the most humane way of catching a mouse, simply because you cannot be 100% sure the trap will instantly kill it. I have caught mice before by the tail and by the leg. It is not pleasant to see, but at least it can no longer roam your house freely.


Poison is highly effective, more effective than snap traps simply because it only needs the mouse to consume a small amount to be effective.

I mentioned above that poison is more effective at killing mice than snap traps because sometimes the mouse will move quicker than the trap or may not be fully on the trap when it triggers. You know the mouse will be dead soon when the poison is taken.

Killing Method

questions, why, how, who, when
How will the Mouse trap kill the Mice?

Mouse Traps

As I mentioned above, the Mouse ‘snap traps’ are designed to kill Mice by breaking their neck instantly.

Sometimes this does not happen, although the vast majority of Mice I have caught in traps have died instantly.

There is a possibility that the mouse has semi-evaded capture or completely avoided being caught in the trap altogether. If this happens, set the trap again and wait.


There a multiple poisons used in the bait to kill Mice. When the mouse consumes the poison, it causes various reactions within the mouse’s body and causes internal bleeding.

Death by poison can take up to several days from consumption.

Needless to say, it is not the most humane way to Kill a Mouse!

Ease of Use

cartoon man standing on green tick, mouse trap, how easy
How easy is it to use a Mouse trap compared with poison?

Mouse Traps

Snap traps are easy to use. The key to successfully catching a Mouse with a snap trap is the position of the trap when it has been set.

Always try to put the trap in a small area you know the mouse regularly travels to. If you leave too much space on either side of the trap, you increase the chances that the mouse will get away from the trap as it is triggered.

There is a 3 step process to set up the Mouse snap trap:

  1. Apply the mouse Bait
  2. Lay the trap down
  3. Set the trap


Poison is easier to use than a snap trap because you need to find a place where the mouse regularly visits and applies the poison.

Usually, the poison will come in a bag or a chewable container, making the job even easier.

ALWAYS keep the poison out of the reach of children. Thankfully, mice usually spend most of their time in your attic, making it easier to keep the poison out of the way.

Environmental Considerations

Mouse Traps v Poison Mouse Control Comparison environmental considerations
Mouse trap v poison, how environmentally friendly are they?

Mouse Traps

Snap traps are reusable and do not cause any damage to the environment.

If you are setting traps around your home, then you do not have to consider any other animals being caught unless you have a pet.

If you are setting traps up outside, then a snap trap is certainly not something you can consider. However, there are many drawbacks to setting snap-style mouse traps outside, but here are the top 2:

  1. You will catch other animals.
  2. The trap will be triggered in other ways (falling leaves, twigs, flowers, and even wind)


You need to consider one severe thing if using poison to catch Mice.

Picture this: You hear mice in your attic late at night, and the very next day, you lay down some poison to catch them before they set up a family home in your family home. Later that evening, the mouse stumbles across the poison and consumes it. Before the poison has taken effect, it travels outside searching for food, and an Owl swoops down and eats it.

Not only has the mouse died, but the Owl will soon follow.

If you set poison outside, it will be eaten by other wildlife too, so I highly recommend that you do not take this approach.

Household Considerations

Mouse Traps v Poison Mouse Control Comparison home considerations
You must always consider your household situation before deciding whether to use poison or a trap!

Mouse Traps

Consider only one thing when setting up mouse ‘snap traps’ in your home, and that is:

Remember where you put them and ensure nobody goes near them!

Mouse traps are powerful because they need to break a mouse’s neck when triggered. If you (or, even worse, a child) accidentally stumble across a mouse trap and triggers it, the pain will be excruciating.


If you decide to use poison to catch a mouse in your home, there are 2 things you need to consider:

  1. Remember where you put it and ensure nobody goes near it
  2. When a mouse takes the bait, you cannot control where it will die

You do not want a human to consume poison because it could also have the same effect you want on the mouse.

As soon as Mice consume the poison, it will begin a chain reaction within the mouse’s body that will eventually kill it. This can take up to 4 days. During those 4 days, the mouse can travel to many places. I have already mentioned above that a predator could eat it. It could also eventually die in a hard-to-reach part of your house, such as your cavity walls.

Removing a mouse from your cavity walls can be a costly job and needs to be completed by a professional.


After considering mouse traps v poison to catch mice in your house, there is one option that wins for me.

Although it is slightly more challenging to use snap traps, they have to be the first choice for DIY rodent control in your home.

A quick recap shows the reasoning behind the decision:

Snap Traps: Pros – High success rate, easy to clean up, and reusable. Cons – A little more challenging to set up.

Poison: Pros – High success rate, easy to use. Cons – It can damage the local environment and your home, not a humane way to kill a mouse

If you must use poison, then use a trap to accompany it. There are mouse traps that a mouse can enter, and once in the trap, they cannot get out. The mouse will consume the poison and then die within the trap, removing all but one negative point – it is still inhumane.

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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