Yesterday (20th January), in response to a review by the Scottish Animal Welfare Commission (SAWC), the Scottish Government announced its plan to ban glue traps!

Glue traps are very cruel, inflicting a great deal of physical and mental stress upon the animals trapped in them, and thus we are delighted to welcome the Government’s commitment to make the use and sale of these cruel traps illegal in Scotland.

What are glue traps?

Glue traps are trays covered with an extremely sticky glue, which traps the animal to the surface of the board. They are used as a method of catching rodents and are incredibly cruel.

Why are they so cruel?

Animals stuck on glue traps are unable to free themselves from the sticky glue substance and are almost guaranteed to suffer during the 12 hours or more that may pass between inspections.

The nature of glue traps frequently causes the animals stuck on them to injure themselves as they struggle to get free. These injuries can include torn skin and broken bones. Horrifyingly, some animals even chew off their own limbs in attempts to get free, and the effects of the restraining glue can also cause suffocation.

The possible lengthy duration for which the animal is trapped can also lead to the animal dying from dehydration and starvation. If not, methods of killing them vary and can be inhumane. A YouGov poll commissioned by Humane Society International (HSI) UK found that 50% of people would not know what to do with a glue trapped animal or would take actions that would cause severe suffering and perhaps constitute an offence under the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.

Animals trapped in glue traps will likely experience prolonged mental, emotional and physical suffering before they die. Subjecting these animals to such treatment is an unbelievably cruel way to treat sentient beings.

What has OneKind done on this issue?

We have long campaigned for a ban on glue traps in Scotland. Some of our work in recent years on this issue includes working with others to support a Scottish Parliamentary petition and a Motion in the Scottish Parliament both calling for a ban on glue traps. We also submitted a statement on the cruelty of glue traps to the SAWC during their review, and were quoted in their report. It was this review, which concluded that there are significant ethical and animal welfare issues relating to the use of glue traps, that was responsible for the Scottish Government committing to a ban.

What is the situation in the rest of the UK?

The UK Government has backed The Glue Traps (Offences) Bill, which would ban the use of glue traps by the public in England, but includes an exemption to allow licensed professionals to continue using them. We urge the UK Government to introduce a full ban on these cruel devices. The Welsh Government is also considering a ban and are consulting certain stakeholders on this; we sent them a statement by their request.