Glue traps are marketed as an efficient, cheap and humane way to kill rodents, but there is nothing humane about causing an animal to starve/dehydrate to death while struggling to free themselves from the glue trap. Many times, rodents will try to chew their limbs off in desperation to escape.
When these animals come in, I immediately anesthetize them with gas anesthesia. The picture below is a House Mouse that was admitted this morning under anesthesia (I didn’t want to take the time to photograph it before anesthetizing it; besides, there are plenty of videos on YouTube of live rodents stuck to glue traps if you want to see first-hand how stressed these animals are).
Once anesthetized, I used vegetable oil to eliminate the stickiness from the glue trap. The mouse came off easily.
Ideally, the animal would then get a bath with Dawn dishsoap to remove the oil, but this little mouse was too unstable for any more anesthesia. Here’s a picture of it recovering.
It’s awake, but pretty stressed from the ordeal. We gave it an anti-inflammatory medication and a quiet, warm enclosure to rest in.
These traps are incredibly inhumane and unnecessary. The animal can NOT remove itself from the trap; it will violently struggle and struggle until it dies. After we removed and treated the mouse, we used the half of the glue trap that wasn’t covered in oil to demonstrate the strength of the adhesive. As you can see from the picture below (a visiting veterinary student from Sweden, Maja-Lisa, is demonstrating), just half of the glue trap is able to hold an almost full gallon of water with no problem.
Another horrific thing about glue traps is they get stuck to ANYTHING (not just rodents). We see just as many “non-target” species as we do rodents on glue traps. The pictures below is a sparrow (they eat off the ground, too). Last summer we admitted five big brown bats stuck to two different glue traps. Unfortunately the bats had struggled so much they had torn their wing webbing and broken their delicate wing bones; they all had to be euthanized.
If you do have a rodent problem, please, don’t use these glue traps. There are inexpensive metal live traps that you can purchase at any hardware store. The best part? It’s incredibly easy to release the mice from these traps and there’s no mess that you have with traditional mousetraps. Even standard snap traps are much more accurate and humane (causing death in less than a second). But remember: You need to block off/fix how the rodents are getting into your house, otherwise it’ll be an ongoing battle.