Can A BB Gun Kill A Rat, Dog, Or Snake?

BB guns can be dangerous and powerful weapons. They are capable of causing serious injury or death, depending on the size of the gun and the type of ammunition used. In this article, I will discuss whether a BB gun can kill a rat, dog, or snake and the potential risks of using these weapons. I will also provide some safety tips for those who use a BB gun.


Why Are BB Guns Called BBs?

A BB gun is an air gun designed to shoot spherical projectiles similar to shot pellets of approximately the same size. 

  • The name “BB” comes from the vocabulary of the size of steel shot pellets used in a shotgun, which are also known as “BB shot.” 
  • The BB pellet is the smallest and lowest-power pellet and is usually made of steel. 
  • In the United States, the most common size is 0.180 inches (4.57 mm) in diameter. Though the pellet size can range from 0.12 inches (3.0 mm) to 0.25 inches (6.3 mm).

BB guns generally use a smoothbore barrel to fire the BBs rather than a rifled barrel. This is because the relatively low mass of a BB does not require the spin imparted by rifling to stabilize its flight. A rifled barrel will impart a spin on a BB, but the effect is too unpredictable to be of any practical use. 

  • BB guns are typically low-velocity. Their velocities usually range from 200 to 450 feet per second (61 to 137 m/s). 
  • The low rate of the BB reduces the noise generated by the firing of the gun. This makes it quieter than most other types of air guns.
  • The low power of a BB gun is also suitable for indoor shooting galleries and ranges.
  • BBs are also used in airsoft guns. Because they use higher-velocity guns that fire plastic pellets instead of steel BBs.


Is A BB Gun Powerful Compared To Lethal Gun?

BB guns have relatively low power and are not normally considered “lethal” weapons. With most BB guns, the maximum effective range is about 50 feet (15 m). At this range, the BB will have enough energy to cause a painful, but not life-threatening, injury. 

But if a BB hits a person in a sensitive area, such as the eye, it can cause significant damage or even death. Therefore, it is important to treat BB guns respectfully and always use protective eyewear.


What Hurts More: Airsoft Or BB?

The answer depends on the individual and the situation. Generally, airsoft pellets cause more pain than BBs due to their larger size and weight. 

  • Airsoft pellets are usually 6mm in diameter and made of plastic. In contrast, BBs are usually 4.5mm in diameter and made of metal.
  • Airsoft pellets can travel up to 400 feet per second, while BBs travel around 350 feet per second. 
  • The impact of an airsoft pellet is more intense than a BB. So it is more likely to cause pain. 

Well, the pain level depends on the distance from which the pellet is fired and the type of clothing the person wears.


What’s Stronger: Pellet Or BB?

Pellets are generally considered to be much stronger than BBs. 

  • Pellets are usually made of lead and are much denser than BBs, which are made of steel. Shells also have a much higher accuracy when fired from an air gun due to their shape and size. 
  • On the other hand, BBs are much less accurate than pellets. And the smaller size makes it easier to deflect off obstacles.


Well, Does A BB Gun Kill A Rat?

A BB gun can potentially kill a rat, but it depends on-

  1. The size of the gun, 
  2. The size of the rat, 
  3. and The distance from which the weapon is fired.

A BB gun typically fires a small bullet made of steel or lead. At close range, this small bullet can penetrate the skin of a rat and cause fatal injury. But the shot may not have enough force to penetrate the skin at longer ranges, and the rat may only be injured. 

Therefore, it is not always guaranteed that a BB gun will kill a rat.


Does A BB Gun Hurt A Dog?

Yes, a BB gun can hurt a dog. But it depends on the size of the dog and the distance at which the gun is fired. 

In this type of scenario, the BB gun can cause minor to serious injury. The BB can penetrate the skin and cause bruising, swelling, and pain. It can also cause internal injuries, broken bones, and in some cases, death. As BB guns are not toys, they should never be used to shoot at harmless animals.

And What Happens If You Shoot A Dog With A BB Gun?

Shooting a dog with a BB gun can cause serious, even fatal, injuries. BB guns fire metal pellets at high speed. So it can penetrate the skin and cause deep tissue and bone damage. Even shooting a dog with a BB gun at close range can cause serious injuries.

The most common injuries caused by BB guns are broken bones, broken teeth, and internal bleeding. If a BB gun is used at close range, the pellets can penetrate the skin and lodge in the body. It can cause significant organ damage and even death depending on where the pellet lodges, 


Dogs are living creatures and should never be shot with a BB gun. It is cruel, and the consequences can be extremely serious. If you witness someone hitting a dog unnecessarily with a BB gun, you should report it to the authorities immediately.


Will A BB Gun Kill A Snake?

No, a BB gun will not kill a snake.

BB guns are typically used to shoot small game, such as birds and rodents. They are not powerful enough to cause lethal injuries to a snake. Also, BB guns are not designed to penetrate the scales of a snake. So even if the shot is accurate, it is unlikely to cause any significant injury. And shooting a snake is generally considered cruel and unnecessary. Therefore it should be avoided whenever possible.

  • There is an effective or humane way to get rid of a snake. Instead of shooting, you can call a snake removal specialist who can safely and humanely remove the snake from your property.

A CO2 BB Gun To Kill A Snake:

No, a CO2 BB gun is not suitable for killing a snake. The BBs would likely not penetrate the snake’s thick skin. And even if they did, the damage would probably not be enough to kill the snake. 

  • If you feel you must destroy the snake. But please contact a professional to do the job humanely and safely.      

An Airsoft Gun To Kill A Snake:

No, it is not advisable to use an airsoft gun to kill a snake.

Airsoft guns are designed to shoot plastic pellets rather than bullets, which are not powerful enough to kill a snake. Using an airsoft gun in such a situation could potentially cause more harm than good. As it could injure the animal and potentially, cause more distress. It is better to call a professional for help in this situation.        

Can A BB Gun Kill A Rattlesnake?

No, it is unlikely that a BB gun would kill a rattlesnake.

Rattlesnakes are relatively large, and their skin is very thick. A BB gun might be able to injure a rattlesnake, but it is unlikely to be fatal. It is always best to leave a rattlesnake alone or seek professional help if you need to remove it from your property.         

Will A BB Gun Kill A Python?

No, a BB gun will not kill a python. Pythons are large, powerful reptiles that require an extremely powerful weapon to be killed.


Moreover, Can You Kill Animals With A BB Gun? 

Yes, you can kill animals with a BB gun.

BB guns are typically classified as air guns and are capable of shooting a variety of projectiles, including metal BBs and pellets. The power of a BB gun is usually determined by its muzzle velocity or the speed at which the shot leaves the barrel.

  • Most BB guns typically have muzzle velocities of around 350 to 500 feet per second. And it is enough to cause serious injury or death to small animals, such as birds and squirrels. 
  • To effectively kill an animal with a BB gun, you must hit it in a vital area, such as the head or neck. 

It is important to note that BB guns should only be used to hunt small animals. But it should never be used to hunt larger animals, such as deer or bears.


Is It Legal To Shoot A Rat, Dog, Or Snake With A BB Gun?

It is generally illegal to shoot any animal with a BB gun. In most states, most animals are protected by state game and fish laws. Thus you see it is very rarely legal to harm or kill them with a BB gun. 

But it is also legal to shoot in some states certain nuisance animals, such as rats and snakes with a BB gun. But it allows only with a permit and if the animal is causing property damage.


More Important FAQs Related To BB Gun:

Can A BB Gun Go Through Skin Or A Skull?

No, a BB gun cannot penetrate skin or a skull. BB gun pellets are typically no larger than 0.18 inches in diameter. So they cannot penetrate thick skin or a skull. But it may cause minor bruising or cuts on the skin’s surface. If a person were to be shot in the head with a BB gun, it would cause pain and swelling. But it would not penetrate the skull and cause significant damage.

Do BB Guns Feel Real?

BB guns can feel quite realistic, depending on the type and model.

Airsoft guns, a kind of BB gun, are designed to be as realistic as possible. Airsoft guns are usually modeled after real firearms and feature a natural weight and feel. 

  • They also feature practical actions such as cocking, loading, and firing. 
  • The pellets they shoot are usually made of plastic.
  • And they typically shoot at a lower velocity than real guns, making them safer for recreational use.

Other BB guns, such as spring-powered BB guns, may not feel as realistic. Though some models can still have a solid, weighty feel.

Can A Gun Kill A Snake?

Yes, a gun can be used to kill a snake. But it depends on the size and type of snake, the weapon used, and the type and size of the bullet. Also remember, the actual killing of a snake can be tricky.

Generally, a .22-caliber rifle, handgun, or shotgun can kill a snake. 

  • The .22-caliber rifle is the preferred weapon for killing snakes due to its accuracy at long distances. 
  • The .22-caliber handgun is also an option. Though it is more difficult to use due to its shorter barrel and range.

Finally, a shotgun can kill a snake, but it is not ideal due to its limited accuracy at long distances.

Does A Heavier BB Hurt More?

Yes, a heavier BB will hurt more than a lighter BB. 

  • When a heavier BB is fired, the mass of the BB increases the kinetic energy of the projectile. This increased force causes a greater amount of pain than a lighter BB. 
  • Additionally, the heavier BB may penetrate the skin deeper, resulting in more tissue damage and increased pain.

Therefore, a heavier BB will usually cause more pain than a lighter BB.

Is A BB Gun Good For Self Defense?

No, a BB gun is not good for self-defense. Because BB guns are designed to shoot small, lightweight BBs. They come with much less power than a regular firearm, making them ineffective for self-defense. 

  • BB guns are not as accurate as other firearms. So it may be difficult to hit a target with one. 
  • Furthermore, BB guns are considered low-power airguns and do not have the stopping power of a higher caliber firearm. 
  • Lastly, some states have laws restricting BB guns for self-defense. And this restriction makes them even less effective for this purpose.


Final Saying

In the nutshell, using a BB gun to kill a rat, dog, or snake is not recommended. Because BB guns are not powerful enough to penetrate the thick hides of these animals. It only causes them suffering if they are not killed outright. Furthermore, even if the animal is killed, there can be serious legal implications.

Also, discharging a BB gun in public can be illegal in some areas. Therefore, if any of these animals need to be killed, it is best to leave it to a professional.