How to Catch a Spider in the House

Arachnophobia, fear of spiders, is not uncommon, but on the other hand, many people love spiders and can become quite obsessive about their spider-watching hobby.

Most people fall somewhere in the middle of these two extremes. Many spiders are ecologically helpful, and the majority of spiders are harmless, so seeing one in a house isn't generally problematic. Not everyone enjoys having a spider crawling around the house, though. Try these ideas if you need to get rid of a spider.

Open a window or door. (Don't forget to do this first so that when the spider is ready to be put outside, you won't need a third hand to open a door or window.)

Slip a piece of cardboard under the spider, and as soon as the spider is safely on top of the cardboard, place a drinking glass on top of her. (Glass is preferable so it's clear that the spider is under the cup.)

Hold the glass cup tightly on the cardboard while walking to the door/window to drop the spider out.

If a piece of cardboard is not nearby, try this: Grab a tissue, towel or some kind of material. There's usually something nearby. Scoop up the spider (don't squish it) and drop it out the door or window.

The advantage of this system is that it is not necessary to break visual contact with the spider while searching for the tools to remove her. Watching the spider continuously may prevent her from disappearing while you locate a cardboard and glass.

In addition, the spider can be contained in the towel with one hand while the second hand is opening a door or window.

Use a towel for the spider to climb on if she's in a hard-to-reach place like in a corner or a bathtub. Place the towel in front of the spider, and she will instinctively climb on it. Once she's there, fold the towel over so that she doesn't fall off and then flip her out the window.

Things You Will Need

  • Drinking glass
  • Cardboard piece
  • Towel


  • If the spider is unusual or looks like one that isn't a "normal house spider" (if it's large or fuzzy, for example), don't take any chances. It could be poisonous. Kill it. Better safe than sorry.

About the Author

Laurie Rappeport is a writer and blogger with more than 10 years of experience. Her areas of expertise are in education, child development, travel, pets, nutrition and health for Demand Studios and a major travel website. Rappeport holds a Master of Arts degree from Wayne State University.