Will a mouse trap kill a rat? Usually, no, a mouse trap won’t effectively kill a rat because a rat is bigger. An adult rat can grow up to 18 inches in length, including the tail while adult mice measure around 7 ½ inches in length, including the tail. Also, the average adult weight (male), is 20–40 grams for mice and 267–500 grams for rats.

Many people mix up rats and mice because they look alike. Both are rodent pests that invade homes and create similar issues. However, they’re not the same, so you can’t use the same methods to get rid of them. Rats are bigger than mice, so regular mouse traps won’t be effective.


Will a Mouse Trap Kill a Rat?

Will a Mouse Trap Kill a Rat

A traditional mouse trap might not be able to kill a rat due to their size and weight. Rats are larger and stronger than mice, and a mouse trap may not deliver that lethal blow needed to eliminate a rat. Rats are often more cautious and might avoid the trap altogether. The solution is to use a rat trap, as it is designed to handle the size and strength of a rat.

What Happens if a Rat Gets Caught in a Mouse Trap?

It is rare for a rat to be killed if caught in a mouse trap. A mouse trap is lightweight, so the rat has the strength to drag the trap away with it. However, the rat might eventually die due to injuries or exhaustion, and you may not know where it dies until it smells.


The primary difference between mice and rats is their size. Rats are much bigger than mice. A rat can be about 8 inches long (excluding tail), while mice are only about three inches long (excluding tail). Not only that, but mice weigh only one ounce, while grown-up rats can weigh a hefty 18 ounces.

Since the size difference is wide, if you use a regular mouse trap to catch a rat, it might not work well. The trap might just hurt the rat and not catch it properly. The rat could escape, and you won’t know where it went.

What to Do Instead

Get a rat trap. You can buy a snap trap designed for rats or make your own bucket rat trap. Alternatively, consider a humane walk-in trap that catches rats in cages, so you can release them in the woods. There are also CO2-powered traps that quickly and humanely kill rats.


Rats can be a health risk, so don’t hesitate to get professional pest control services to solve your rodent problems. Ultimately, a mouse trap won’t kill a rat the way it should so opt for traps built for rats.

Read alsoBest Homemade Rat Bait [Strong and Fast Options]


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