Rat & Mouse Trap Laws in the United States of America

March 21, 2019 4 min read


American Rat Trap Laws 

The notion that American rat trap laws make rat and mouse traps illegal in various states is mostly a myth. This is largely due to confusions from other trapping and hunting laws that many assume apply to small rodents.

There are rare exceptions in areas across the United States that do require you to have a permit to possess rodent traps. We examine these further in this article. Additionally, there have been large pushes to ban inhumane traps that cause needless suffering and are for the most part ineffective. This includes products such as glue traps. Organizations such as PETAand The Humane Society have large campaigns underway to persuade governments and corporations from both selling and allowing these traps to be used. 

At the moment, while there are exceptions to the rules, it is generally encouraged to practice rodent control when it comes to your home and business. Below are some interesting facts about Rat & Mouse Trap Laws in the United States of America

Washington D.C. 

There are many exceptions to these rules. Perhaps the most famous example is Washington D.C. Many are familiar with the limitations but misunderstand the stipulations. Snap and glue traps are both illegal in Washington D.C for proactive use. Instead, you are required to contact exterminators to humanely trap rats and release them into the wild in either Virginia or Maryland.
However, exceptions to that mousetrap law apply only if they’ve taken up residence inside of your home. The idea of making catching rats illegal is simply not true. It’s just that Washington D.C. slightly differs in its legal methods. 
The downside for D.C. residents has been that along with a growth in their cities population, the rats have followed right along with them. There were only 3,531 rodent complaints in 2016, in 2017 that number shot up to 5,310 an increase of as high as 50.38%. This number has just continued to grow in recent years as the problem has intensified.

Revolutionary, automatic, and toxin-free rat and mouse control for your home or business.
Cats & Dogs 

All 50 states currently permit cats and dogs to assist in rat extermination. However, doing so for sport is illegal in most areas. PETA complaints have led to some arrests in New York City. This may have been due to a VICE viral video which featured New York residents using small dogs to proactively hunt rats. They were labeled as vigilantes as the laws do not protect killing for sport or actively pursuing rats that were not threatening your home.  

Rat Poisons

There have been regulations placed on some rat poisons. For example, in some states, it has become illegal to purchase second-generation anticoagulants. These can only be made available to pest control professionals, because of their high degree of toxicity. As with much other poison issues, California is leading the way. In 2014, they introduced AB 2657 which called for the restriction of second-generation anticoagulants in areas such as state and national parks. This was in response to decreasing populations of animals such as bobcats who were impacted by secondary poisoning. 
Rodenticides also pose a threat to domestic animals and children. Because of this it is imperative you educate your children about their potential threats and know how to act if your pet ingests rodenticides. 

Mousetrap laws in California however are mostly myth. The urban legends and confusion mostly stem from a misunderstanding related to their hunting and fishing license laws. In California, licenses are required to fish and hunt whether it’s for recreation or commerce. However, it does not make catching rats illegal, or apply to mousetrap or any other rodent trap laws. 

According to Section 116125 of the California Health & Safety code, California citizens aren't just allowed to trap rats and mice, they are encouraged to for health and safety concerns: 

Legally, our traps fall under the same category as your common snap trap. They don’t use poison, or glue, or any other inhumane methods. If you are legally allowed to use a snap or traditional rat traps in your area, there is no legal reason why you can't set up an A24. 

Why Mice and Rats Thrive 

Mice and rats still thrive, unfortunately, mostly because of us humans. They feed off of everything from seeds to fruit. If not left in check, their population can very quickly get out of control and led to things like famines or electricity being cut out. They can also carry an array of diseases that can affect humans as they are known to bite humans. Ever since the ancient Egyptians first bred cats down to keep the mouse population in check, we have been coming up with better ways to prevent their population from getting out of control. 

Our trap is one of the best yet for capturing and killing mice and rats. If you’re reading this, we’re assuming that you live on a farm, in a cabin, are a homeowner, or just someone with major rodent issues. We’re assuming that you probably either don’t own a cat or your cat has trouble hunting. 

If you are having trouble with mice, rats, or any other wild rodents in your home, please contact us! You can also look up our “Retail Locations” page to see if we have any store locations in your area. 

What Our Traps Do 

The A24 is a quick-kill option, that avoids the use of rodenticides and other toxins. Our traps are designed to automatically reset themselves after every strike. They have their own digital counters, which takes the guesswork out of when to replace your CO2 cartridge and our chocolate and nut butter formulated lures last up to six months. They are weather tested and designed to endure even the toughest indoor and outdoor environments. 

A Better Solution

At AutomaticTrap.com, we provide a successful and quick-kill solution for rodent control. We don't hate rats and mice, we understand that sometimes it is necessary to dispatch of these animals to avoid inevitable problems such as disease or property dame. We don't believe that should suffer the fate of glue traps, or long and agonizing poisons. Learn more about Automatic Trap by visiting our website, call 1 (877) 992-8868 or e-mail us at support@automatictrap.com

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The Homeowners Guide To Catching Rats & Mice

Every year, rats and mice enter 20 million U.S. homes uninvited. They reproduce rapidly, and can cost thousands of dollars in damages and extermination costs. They can ruin equipment, spoil food and start fires by chewing on wires.

We’ve trapped millions (seriously, millions) of rats and mice and the knowledge of what it takes to achieve success is highlighted in this guide.

Homehowners Guide to Catching Rats


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