Target and Dollar Tree have quietly stopped selling glue traps for rodents, which animal-rights activists have long condemned as unnecessarily cruel, The Post has learned.
The two mega-retailers, which together operate more than 17,000 stores across the US, are following other major retailers in dropping the traps. Those include the CVS, Rite Aid and Duane Reade drugstore chains as well as discount retailer Big Lots, according to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
Hundreds of smaller retailers, including independent stores and mid-size chains, as well as shops at more than 100 airports also have dropped glue traps over the years, according to PETA.
Target and Dollar Tree, which also owns Family Dollar, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Dollar Tree made the decision to stop selling the traps about a year ago and may still “have a very small residual number of these [traps] in our stores,” the company told PETA in an email, in which it confirmed that it has “no plans to replenish” the products, according to the animal rights group.
Target listed the traps as recently as May 10 on its website, according to PETA, but it dropped them after May 16, the animal rights group claims, citing calls to 20 stores across the country and tips from Target employees.
Introduced in the 1980s, glue traps also have been used to capture other wildlife including birds, snakes, and squirrels that “struggle desperately to escape, sometimes chewing off their own limbs before succumbing to shock, dehydration or blood loss,” according to PETA.
The group is now zeroing in on Home Depot and Lowe’s, PETA spokesperson, Moira Colley said, adding, “We continue to push Walmart, Amazon, and others to follow Target’s lead.” The group said it is also in conversations with grocers including Albertson’s, the No. 2 supermarket chain in the US.
A spokesperson for Home Depot told The Post, it has had “ongoing conversations with representatives of PETA on this issue,” adding “We offer a wide variety of choices across all of our product categories based on customer demand.”
Lowe’s did not immediately respond for comment.
“For whatever reason some companies don’t want to concede that they were pressured to make a change,” Colley told The Post.
PETA is known for its aggressive tactics aimed at shaming and pressuring big companies into capitulating on a specific issue, largely through protests outside prominent stores or big events like Canada Goose’s first day of trading as a public company on the New York Stock Exchange in March 2017. That’s when PETA supporters staked out in front of the exchange carrying posters of bloodied coyotes whose fur was used as trim on the apparel company’s pricey parkas.
In 2020, Canada Goose announced its decision to stop making coats using fur from freshly killed coyotes. PETA has more recently taken on French fashion companies for using alligator and lizard skins that are obtained through brutal means, as The Post reported.