How to Get Rid of Rats With Homemade Poison
When Rats Are Unwelcome in Your Home
Rats are shy, nocturnal rodents that seek food, water, shelter and safety in our homes. In many cases, rats will live outside a home but come in for food during their active hours (at night).
Do you have rats in your home? And they aren't pets? Read on for natural ways to get rid of them and keep them from coming back.
I'll share simple recipes for:
- Boric acid poison
- Baking soda poison
- Plaster of Paris poison
What You'll Need to Make Rat Poison
- Disposable gloves
- Chicken broth
- Flour or cornmeal
- Sugar or powdered chocolate mix
- Boric acid
- Baking soda
- Plaster of Paris
- Jar lids
1. How to Make Boric Acid Rat Poison
- Put on your disposable gloves to avoid skin irritation. Put 1 cup of boric acid into a bowl. Begin adding chicken broth to the boric acid, about a 1/2 tsp. at a time. Stir very well after each addition, until you have a thick paste that's no longer easily stirred. If it's too thin, just add a little more boric acid. The odor of the broth will attract the rats, which will eventually die from consuming the boric acid.
- Roll the paste into balls about the size of a marble. Place two or three of the balls into jar lids or other small disposable containers, creating baits that will be easy to relocate if need be.
- Place the baits in areas where you have seen rat droppings, which are places that they are the most likely to reappear.
- Watch the baited areas for the cessation of droppings, or for the appearance of dead rats.
2. How to Make Baking Soda Rat Poison
- Put on disposable gloves. Combine 1 cup of flour or cornmeal with 1 cup of sugar or powdered chocolate mix. Add 1 cup of baking soda and blend the mixture very well. The sugar or chocolate will attract the rats and the baking soda will soon kill them after they've consumed it.
- Fill some jar lids about half full with the rat bait.
- Set the baited jar lids wherever you have noticed rat droppings. The rats are most likely to return to these spots.
- Monitor the areas for indications that your problem is solved, once you no longer spot new droppings. Watch for dead rats.
What does baking soda do to rats?
The bicarbonate in the baking soda reacts with the rat’s stomach acids to produce a carbon dioxide gas. Since rats are unable to pass the gas, it builds up in the rat’s system and eventually causes internal blockage or rupture.
3. How to Make Plaster of Paris Rat Poison
- Put on your disposable gloves. Combine 1 cup each of flour or cornmeal, sugar or powdered chocolate mix and plaster of Paris. Blend the mixture very well. The smell of the sugar or chocolate will attract the rats and they will eat the bait. Consuming the plaster of Paris will kill them when it combines with fluids and hardens in their gastrointestinal tracts.
- Spoon enough of the mixture into jar lids to fill them about halfway.
- Place the baited lids in areas of your home where you've noticed rat traffic, particularly where you've found droppings.
- Watch the areas carefully for dead vermin. You should also notice that the appearance of fresh droppings is diminishing or has ceased altogether.
Outdoor Rat Traps That Are Safe for Children and Other Animals
A reader kindly shared this method after trying it himself.
To avoid injuring pets, wildlife, and children, follow these steps when placing rat poison outside your home.
- Get a few empty plastic one-gallon milk jugs.
- Find a few places where rats live outside your home, such as near plants or trash cans.
- Mix some sugar and powdered chocolate or cocoa powder. Alternatively, you can prepare one of the poison recipes above.
- Fill the milk just half-way with water.
- Add some of sugar or poison mixture and screw the lid on.
- Dig a hole in one of the spots where rats are present. Bury the jug in the hole until it's even with the ground.
- Sprinkle a little chocolate powder around on the surface. Rats will smell the chocolate and dig a hole through both the soil and the plastic jug, but the hole will be just large enough for them to drop in and drown.
Places to bury an outdoor rat trap
- Near wood piles or lumber that is not being used
- Under bushes, vines, and in tall grasses that are not trimmed or cut back
- Under rocks in the garden
- In crawl spaces under buildings
- In and around trash and compost cans
How to Keep Rats Away From Your Yard
- Make sure the lids on any garbage cans are tightly sealed.
- Stow any bags of trash inside sealed garbage cans.
- Store food for pets and birds in sealed containers. Do not leave birdseed on the ground or in seed feeders.
- Seal your compost pile or worm bin. Do not put meat or dairy products in the compost.
- Clean up and compost any fruits or berries that have fallen to the ground.
- Clean up and dispose of any dog droppings.
Use a Bait Station!
One drawback to using any of these DIY poisons inside your home is that poisoned rats may crawl into a hard-to-reach place to die. This will smell very bad! If possible, use a bait station, so the rat dies in a secure place and the poison doesn't harm pets or children.
DIY Bait Stations to Kill Rats
If you have rats inside your home, don't use any of the above poison mixtures without a bait station. A bait station is simply a box or other structure that contains the poison. You should use a bait station because:
- it offers the rat a more secure place to eat, making it more likely that they'll feel safe and eat more of the poison mixture
- it keeps pets and children away from the poison mixture
- it's more likely that the dying rat will die in the station rather than crawling off and dying somewhere hard to reach
Make your own bait station
You can buy bait stations made out of hard plastic, cardboard, or metal at hardware stores. You can also make your own. Choose solid materials, like pieces of scrap wood or plastic. Make sure your bait station has two entrances. Rats are more likely to eat in a place where there are multiple exits. Some types of homemade bait stations are:
- a length of PVC pipe
- an empty plastic milk or water jug with two holes large enough for the rat to crawl through
- a wooden box with two small holes
- a cigar box with two small holes
Where to put bait stations indoors
- in the insulation of walls or ceilings
- in crawl spaces
- behind or under cupboards, counters, bathtubs, and shower stalls
- near hot water heaters and furnaces
- in basements, attics, and wherever things are stored in boxes or bags
Using Rat Traps
The best rat trap is the large, simple, cheap wooden "snap trap." They are sold in hardware stores.
To use the trap:
- Bait it with pieces of apple, potato, raw bacon, cereal, or peanut butter spread on a cotton ball. Make sure the bait is attached to trap.
- Place the trap near where you have found rat droppings. Make sure the trap is out of reach from children and pets.
- Attach the trap firmly to the ground or to a solid wall to keep the rat from dragging the trap away.