How To Get Rid Of Rats Without Poison – 5 Ways

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.

Want to know how to get rid of rats without poison? As I am not a huge fan of using poison, I am with you!

Although poison can increase the chances of getting rid of rats, other ways can be equally successful.

Using poison can lead to some dangerous situations! There are several dangers of using poison to control rats, including secondary poisoning.

As you can’t dictate where rats go after consuming poison, the rats may also end up dying in your cavity walls, causing an odor that will emanate through your home for months!

These are probably why you want to get rid of rats without using poison, and I don’t blame you.

In this post, I will run through 5 ways you can get rid of rats, and none of them include the use of poison. I’ll also touch upon some of the preventative measures you can do to stop rats in the first place.

How To Get Rid Of Rats Without Poison (1)

How To Get Rid Of Rats Without Poison

Let’s face it, using poison is a very effective rat control technique, but it is not one that you should use without the correct consideration.

Personally, I do not like using it… and as you have landed here on this page, I am guessing that you do not want to use poison as rat control too?

Aside from using homemade rat repellent options, there are more tools you can use…

If you want to know how to get rid of rats without poison, take a look at these 5 options.

Snap Traps

Snap traps are my go-to product for catching rats!

From the very first time I noticed that I had a rat in my attic, I used snap traps and have never looked back.


Because if you buy the correct traps, you will catch rats time and time again. The success rate is high!

You only need to invest in these traps once. As soon as you have caught a rat, clean the trap and re-use it. Time and time again. Don’t forget to use a glove when setting up the trap! These rats can smell your scent.

As with all rat traps, success depends entirely on 2 things:

  1. The rat bait – Want to know what food is irresistible to rats? Peanut butter is the most successful rat bait I have used! If you do not have any peanut butter, then you should consider using food that a rat would generally eat in the wild. Meat, fruit, nuts, and berries all work well as rat bait. I have a post for the best foods to use to bait rats, so check that out if you need some inspiration for which bait to use.
  2. The trap location and position – always place the traps in constricted areas, up against walls, and in areas where you can confirm that rats have been or are likely to go in the near future. You want to rat to stumble upon the rat trap. Rats use small confined areas to travel through, so use this knowledge to your advantage! If you have set a trap up so that a rat HAS to walk over it, you will get high levels of success.

Electronic Traps

Electronic traps are awesome for catching rats without the use of poison!

The beauty is that if a rat takes a stroll through an electric trap, you won’t NEED to use poison.

These rat traps deliver a humane electric shock to the rat, which kills them instantly.

If you want to know how to get rid of rats without poison, I highly recommend using an electronic rat trap!

Live Catch Traps

Live catch rats traps are good for catching and getting rid of rats without killing them.

Obviously, you will be left with a live rat, so it is up to you whether or not you choose to take this option or not.

Whilst most people hate the idea of having rats in or near their home, there are folks out there that don’t want to kill them. They would rather rehome them in an area far, far away from their property!

I recommend that you dispose of a live rat more than 3 miles away from your home in an area they will thrive in. Ideally, it would be best to take them to a woodland area close to a lake or a stream.

If you want to know how to get rid of rats without poison, then live catch rats traps are a must!


A more natural way of eliminating rats without poison is to consider a natural predator of rats. I.e., something that will hunt, kill, and eat rats.

We know that cats eat rats and are among the most popular tools for getting rid of rats without using poison. Here is a list of animals that you can use:

  1. Cats
  2. Dogs
  3. Birds of Prey (Hawks, Owls, etc.)
  4. Snakes (Depends what you fear more!)

The sheer presence of these animals is usually enough to scare a rat. Rats have an excellent sense of smell and will know these predators are present.

A natural instinct is for the rat, or rats to disappear. That is what we want, right?

You don’t have to go out and buy a brand new bird of prey! What you can do is borrow a friend’s cat or dog to patrol your property for a few hours.

Smoke Bombs

You can use smoke bombs to disperse rats very quickly if they live in or around your property.

If you have found a rat burrow in your yard, smoke bombs are an excellent way of evacuating the burrow and getting rid of the rats that lived in there. You can either leave the holes open for the rats to escape or fill in the holes, which results in a few dead rats!

Check this video out, it shows the best way to use smoke bombs to get rid of rats, and of course, they do not use poison, which is our goal here.

Eliminating Rats Without Poison – Preventative Measures

Ok, so we have been through 5 ways to get rid of rats without poison, and now we move onto something that I deem more important.

It is more important to me because preventative measures WILL STOP rats from getting into your home in the first place. It is so much easier than getting rid of them AFTER they have gained access.

If you want to know how to deter rats without poison, then follow this advice:

Don’t Let Them In

If rats cannot get into your home, you do not need to get rid of them!

I have a process for my home that includes monthly checks around it for rat entry points. If I find any, I’ll secure that entry point ASAP.

That way, a rat has great difficulty getting into my home, and I can rest easy knowing that I live in a rat-free home.

Sealing up any rat entry points really is the best way to deal with rats without poison and without having to get rid of them when they do get in!

Remove Items They Need

Rats are relatively simple creatures. All they need is:

If you remove easy access to these things, you are already well on your way to winning the war against rats. Controlling rats without poison is easy if they are no longer interested in your home, right?

Remove the things that rats are attracted to, and you are winning!

Make Changes To Your Yard

If you want to prevent rats from getting too close to your home, you can achieve that by making the journey to get to your home a perilous one!

By making it too risky to get near your home, you are increasing your chances of having a rat-free property.

To prevent rats in your home, you need to prevent rats from getting into your yard. You can do that by:

  • Reducing places where rats can hide.
  • Removing any bird feeders.
  • Storing food correctly.

It is common to see rats in your yard or garden, even during the daylight hours, so if you do see one, there is no need to panic just yet. If you do see one, you should monitor your yard for more appearances. If it is a regular occurrence, then you should look to address it.

How To Get Rid Of Rats In Your Yard Without Using Poison

It is one thing getting rid of rats in your home, but what if you have rats in your yard… and you want to get rid of them without the use of poison?

First, you should read my post about the things that attract rats to your yard – that post will help you remove the attractions.

To remove rats from your yard without using poison, you have 1 option:

Use Live Catch Rat Traps

Why live catch rat traps?

Because when you are using traps outdoors, you can catch anything! It might be a rat, or it might be the next-door neighbor’s cat. You don’t want to catch anything other than a rat.

If you choose to use a snap trap or an electric trap, you are risking the lives of other wildlife that you will also attract to the bait you have left out.

By using a live-catch rat trap, you have the ability to free any other wildlife, and if you catch a rat, you have the ability to do something with that too. Whether to humanely kill it or set it free more than 3 miles away from your home.

No Snap Trap – No Electronic Trap – No Poison – No Glue Traps

These are the four things you cannot use if you want to get rid of rats from your yard (without poison). All of these options do not discriminate what they kill.

I mentioned the reasons above, but I need to mention them here because it really is that important.

Using any of the four options (snap trap, electric trap, glue traps, or poison) will result in the death of other wildlife who may find themselves in your garden. That includes cats and other wildlife that you might endanger.

Let’s not forget that it is not just animals who get caught in traps. Imagine if you have kids running around in your yard, and they get a foot stuck in a snap trap? I am sure you don’t want that to happen!

Using glue traps is a no for me too. Whether that is in your home or outside, I straight-up don’t like them. They cause pain and suffering for anything caught in them. I know you don’t want rats in your home, but there are better ways than using glue traps.

PETA says don’t use glue traps, and so do I. Glue traps are a cruel way of catching animals.


If you want to know how to get rid of rats without poison, then the 5 ways identified on this page will help.

I added a separate section for preventative measures because this is as, if not more important, than actually getting rid of the rats.

It is worth considering using homemade rat poison options if you are not keen on using high-grade poisons because of the danger to others. The homemade options are safer, although you should still use them with caution.

You have a straight choice – you can either take up the battle with rats every few months, or you could prevent them from getting on to your property in the first place! It is so much easier and so much less work in the long run.

So, seal up those rat entry points, and you are saving yourself a headache in the future.

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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