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Dry Ice to Kill Rats [Killing Rats with Carbon Dioxide]

Here is how it works. When the dry ice sublimes, it releases carbon dioxide gas. When rats are trapped and forced to inhale it, they will die. This will then paralyze their entire system because they cannot survive without fresh air.

Dry ice is carbon dioxide that is solidified by freezing. To kill rats, place 2-3 scoops of dry ice into their hiding burrows. Then block all the entries and exits for 48 hours. Dry ice kills rats by suffocating them because it emits carbon dioxide which limits oxygen supply.

Dry ice is basically CO2 that has been frozen in solid form. This is just like water that is frozen into ice cubes.

Dry Ice to Kill Rats [Killing Rats with Carbon Dioxide]

How to kill rats with dry ice

Here is how to use dry ice to kill rats outdoors. After identifying rat holes in your garden, get some dry ice and use these steps to kill them:

  1. Have some gloves on and scoop some dried ice using a spoon
  2. Stuff the hole with as much as you can
  3. Seal the hole with a foil
  4. Then cover that up with some soil so that the gas does not escape
  5. When the dry ice sublimes, it will release CO2 that will kill all the rats in there

Use the very same steps to kill rats that make holes in your walls especially in old apartments and houses. Simply identify the holes and tick some dry ice in there. Then seal the holes using papers or foils and let it work all-out effortlessly.

Is it safe to use dry ice to kill rats in the house?

Advice: When using dry ice indoors to kill rats, avoid staying in the same room. Excessive dry ice will mean that there will be more carbon dioxide in the room than oxygen. This is not good for you and your pets at all.

Use it in areas where there is no human activity. Do not use or store it in the same room that you are sleeping in. Pestweek.com recommends that you use it when you know you will be away from the house. Find somewhere to sleep and also keep your pets out of that room.

Let it settle for 2 days so that the fumes are completely gone and ensure you aerate the room well before you think of sleeping in there.

This means that when you are done killing the rats using dry ice in a room, clean the room, leave the door and windows open for at least 12 hours before using the room again.

How long does it take dry ice to kill rats?

It takes 1-2 days for the dry ice to kill rats. This is because It takes 1 day for the solid dry ice to completely turn into carbon dioxide gas. However, it will take about 5 minutes for CO2 to render rats unconscious because rats cannot survive without breathing for long.

The maximum it may take is 10 minutes and this is when you have not sealed the area properly and there is a little fresh air with oxygen that is neutralizing the CO2 that is gaining access into the hideout.

You may want to use plastic paper bags to cover any open point that they may be used to get fresh air. One of the easily available materials to use is the paper bags used for trash. They are wide enough and easy to spread on the openings.

Why is dry ice dangerous for rats?

Dry ice is dangerous for a couple of reasons. The first one is its temperature. As the name suggests, it is ice that is very cold. It is about negative 109 degrees Fahrenheit which is something like negative seventy-eight point five degrees Celsius.

Dry ice is extremely cold. When it gets into contact with the rat’s skin, it will freeze and kill its cells. They cannot survive it when it is dropped on them. Rats are warm-blooded and they cannot survive in extremely cold conditions.

When using dry ice to kill rats, have some gloves on. Ensure that you keep it away from your eyes, nose and mouth.

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Holding lots of it with bare hands is not really healthy because it can also freeze your skin cells. So u definitely need some gloves and if possible a mask while using dry ice to kill rats.

What does dry ice contain?

Dry ice is dangerous for rats because of the CO2 that it gives off. Dry ice sublimates which means that it goes from its solid state to its gaseous state skipping the liquid state in between. This is why they call it dry ice and when it goes into that gaseous state, it gives off CO2.

That co2 can be toxic to both humans and rats. This is because the air we breathe has about 78% nitrogen and about 21% oxygen with a little carbon dioxide.

According to Boston University Research Support, carbon dioxide euthanasia for rats and mice provides a fast and painless death. The CO2 makes the rats unconscious in a matter of minutes before they die from suffocation.

If you are looking for where to buy rat ice, simply check it out on online market platforms like amazon. You can also find it around your local stores especially if you are in Los Angeles and its environs.

Is it harsh to kill rats with carbon dioxide?

Killing rats using dry ice is not harsh and not painful because they will die fast. However, it cannot be classified under smells that rats hate because dry ice has no repelling odor. It releases CO2 which can kill rats if inhaled in large quantities.

This is because there are no poisonous chemicals that are involved. Pets and any other animals will be safe unless they are exposed to high levels of dry ice in a closed room. However, using insect spray to kill rats can be harsh on them.

If they are not available, make an order and they will let you know how to get one. This is good for outdoor and other methods like the Flagyl bait for rats may also work outdoors. Here is a video of places where you can buy dry ice:



  1. Boston University Research Support: Carbon Dioxide Euthanasia for rats and mice
  2. DC HEALTH, Government of the District of Colombia: dry ice application for rodent abatement
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