How Not to Release an Animal from a Trap
Kevin Felts 07.17.17
Have you ever wondered how to safely release an animal from a foothold trap?
Well, this is not how you do it.
While scrolling through YouTube I saw a video that showed a bite mark as the preview image and had the title, “Crap! I Guess They Do Bite… “.
I figured the video was about a chicken snake. When someone finds a chicken snake (rat snake) in their chicken house, they think the snake is harmless, so they grab it. The snake swings around and bites them. The snake is not venomous, but will leave bite marks.
The video is not about a chicken snake, but a fox that was caught in a foot hold trap. The guy proceeds to release the animal, and all I could do is shake my head in disgust.
As a hunter and wildlife conservationist, I found the video disturbing.
Rather than grabbing the animal, throw a blanket over it. The blanket covers the animal so it can not see what is going on. The blanket also adds a bite buffer between you and the animal.
Sometime around 1981 or 1982, my dad caught a house cat in a foothold trap. You think the fox was bad? Try releasing a cat. Dad threw a blanket over the terrified cat. A couple of minutes later, the cat and my dad walked away, no worse for the wear.
Until I switched over to dog-proof traps, I had to release a few cats, and the blanket trick works just fine.