You can get rid of rats without using any poison by:
- Use poison-free traps.
- Remove debris from your home and yard to eliminate rat habitats.
- Close up gaps where rats enter your home from outside.
- Secure food in rat-proof containers.
- Use electronic rat-repellent machines.
I’ve worked on several home renovation projects that began with mouse and rat infestations on the property. By the end of each job, the home was rat-free. I’ve never used poison to kill rats because it is a poor choice. Instead, I used the methods in this article.
Why Should You Avoid Using Rat Poison?
Rat poison is a dangerous and ineffective pest control tool because it can cause unintended harm. Poison bait can attract pets and other wildlife, leading to accidental deaths. Additionally, poison does not kill rats instantly. A weakened rat infected with poison may be caught by a pet or another predator. When this animal eats the rat, it may become infected with the poison and die.
- Pets, beneficial wildlife, and children may come into contact with the poison.
- Animals that attack or eat poisoned rats can be poisoned and die.
- Poisoned rats may crawl into a hidden place in your home before dying.
Even if a poisoned rat isn’t eaten by a pet, it can still cause problems. Poisoned rats often crawl to hidden places before they die. If a rat eats poison, it can still live long enough to crawl into your air vent or wall before dying. This can fill your home with the smell of a dead, rotting rat.
5 Ways to Get Rid of Rats Without Using Poison
Because poison is dangerous and not always effective, it’s not the best go-to option for rat control. Instead, use these methods to kill off and drive out rats.
Use traps to kill rats quickly. Bait the trap with peanut butter or jelly. Then, set it in an area where rats travel. The corner of a room, a kitchen counter, or in an attic are all great places. Set the trap carefully and leave it undisturbed. Check each of your rat traps daily. This simple solution kills rats more quickly and effectively than poison.
- These super-effective rat traps kill rats much faster than poison.
- Bait the trap with peanut butter—it works well for most rats.
- Place the trap up against a wall so rats are more likely to approach.
Rats, like most rodents, prefer to follow along walls when traveling inside the home. They are wary about going into the center of a room. So, it’s a good idea to put traps along walls. If you are worried about pets or children being harmed by the traps, consider using tunnel traps that the rats must crawl inside.
Clean Up Clutter
Hidden places and piles of material attract rats both inside and outside the home. If you have rats indoors, clean out your closets, storage spaces, and kitchen cupboards. Throw away old paper and cloth that rats can use for nesting materials. Also, discard anything that has food on it. Decluttering your home room-by-room is an excellent way to eliminate rats quickly. Without places to hide and breed, the rats will leave in search of another home.
- Do a deep clean and throw away any trash in your home.
- Clean out closets and storage spaces where rats love to hide.
- Clean up your yard and mow the grass to give rats fewer places to nest.
A mess outside your home can also invite rats. Clean up around the home by removing any piles of wood or other debris from your yard. Remove dead leaves, branches, and plants. It’s also a great idea to fully remove low-growing plants, such as ivy. Mow your grass short so rats can’t hide in your yard. These chores help make your yard less inviting for rats.
As you are cleaning your home to drive out rats, look for any places where rats may be entering your home from outdoors. Gaps around windows, doors without weatherstripping, holes in siding, and cracks in your foundation can all allow rats to sneak in. Wherever you find one of these gaps, repair it. This will stop future rat infestations.
- Search for gaps around doors, windows, and roof vents where rats may sneak in.
- Seal any gaps that rats may use to invade your home.
- If you have an attic, make sure to inspect it carefully for signs of rat infestation.
It’s a good idea to look for potential rat entrances both inside and outside your home. From the outside, your attic may look secure. When you are inside, you may notice light or cool air coming in from gaps around vents. Rats in the attic are so common that it is worth reading up on the top ways to get rid of attic rats.
Keep Food Secured
Rats are most often drawn to humans due to food. Rats will invade cabinets and pantries to steal your food. If you have a rat problem, it is essential to store all food in hard, resealable containers. Cardboard and paper packaging won’t keep rats out. Neither will plastic bags. A hard plastic, metal, or ceramic container with a latched, rubber seal is the best solution.
- Seal all your food in these rodent-proof storage containers.
- Store pet food in rodent-proof containers as well.
- Without a food source, rats will starve or leave your home.
In addition to your own food, make sure to seal pet food in rodent-proof containers. Rats can feed exclusively on pet food if they have to. By locking down all the food in your home, rats won’t have an easy meal. This will drive them out of your home and prevent re-infestation.
Call an Exterminator
If the other tactics on this list don’t work, contact a well-reviewed local exterminator. The professionals will have access to specialized tools and techniques. Make sure to let the exterminator know you do not want any poison used on your property. Only work with the exterminator if they understand and agree to do the job according to your requirements.
- Contact a local extermination service to kill the rats.
- Professionals use tools and techniques that are not available to average consumers.
- Working with an exterminator can help end the rat infestation quickly.
Using an exterminator may seem expensive, but it is often worth the money. Rather than spending your time and money trying out different traps and products, you can pay professionals to handle the job.
What Keeps Rats Away Naturally?
An environment with no free food and few hiding areas is the best natural rat repellent. Begin with your yard. Clean up and throw away any fallen fruit, vegetables, and nuts that rats may feed on. Then rake up dead leaves. Either fully remove ground-covering plants or trim low-growing bushes so there is at least 6 inches (15 cm) of clearance between the ground and the plant’s lower branches. A lack of food and hiding spots will cause rats to avoid your home.
- Throw away fallen fruits, nuts, and vegetables in your yard.
- Remove rat hiding places, such as dead leaves and branches.
- Trim the foliage of your bushes to eliminate rat nesting places.
- Plant lavender, mint, and other aromatic herbs to discourage rats.
- For more information, check out how to get rid of rats in your yard without harming pets.
Aromatic plants can help keep rats out of your yard. Mint and lavender are excellent for this job. The strong smells of these plants mask other scents. Rats have a harder time finding food and smelling predators in gardens with aromatic plants. So, the right garden can work as a natural rat repellent.
How Do You Kill Rats Fast Without Poison?
Traps are the best way to kill rats without using poison. Although deadly traps are easy to work with, you can choose no-kill traps if you prefer. Although it won’t kill the rats, cleaning your home and yard will reduce a rat infestation. Then, seal any entrances rats can use to get into your home. Next, store your food in rat-proof containers so the rodents can’t continue to get free meals. This will help kill off rats and discourage them from living in your home.