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The Greatest Hooks for Catfishing Success

As you prepare for your fishing trip, you need to know what gear you plan to bring. If you don’t find the best catfish hooks, you may run into problems and struggle to catch some catfish. After all, how do you find the best hook to help you with your catfishing needs?

a fishing hook for catfish

Going through the hook types available will give you multiple options to use. Luckily, we researched and found the best hooks for catfish to assist you during your fishing trip. Each of these options works for catfishing, so you can’t go wrong with any choices below.

As you check these five hooks, you’ll see how they differ. Make sure you go through the list and see which ones sound the most appealing so that you can enjoy your upcoming fishing trip.

a catfish swimming underwater

Whether you plan to keep the fish or play catch-and-release, you’ll find hooks for your situation.

Top 5 Types of Hooks to Catch Catfish

  1. Treble Hook
  2. Circle Hook
  3. Kahle Hook
  4. J Hook
  5. Octopus Hook

Treble Hook

A treble hook takes an interesting approach by using three hooks in one. The hooks come off the center rod and are spaced evenly in a circle.

multiple treble hooks

The design allows a fish to get caught on one, two, or all three hooks, depending on how they bite it.

The hook makes it ideal for catfish since they have largemouths. Depending on where you fish, you can come across catfish about three meters in length.

A treble hook can attach to a catfish’s mouth at multiple points, making it harder to break away from your grasp.

However, treble hooks can be more challenging than other kinds when removing the catfish since you need to unhook the fish from all three points.

The design doesn’t make it ideal for catch-and-release since the catfish may die. Nevertheless, if you plan to keep the catfish or struggle to reel them in, this hook will help you during your fishing trip.

Circle Hook

Circle hooks take a similar approach to J hooks, but they have a more substantial curve forming almost a circle.

The shape still has a hook at the end, but it doesn’t go as deep as J hooks. The design of a circle hook helps the catfish in multiple ways.

a circle hook for catfish
  • The hook catches the corner of the mouth, so you have an easier time unhooking the catfish.
  • The hook doesn’t pierce as deep, so you don’t risk killing the fish if you plan to release it afterward.
  • The less-deep wounds and corner catching mean you remove the hook faster, so the fish doesn’t spend as much time out of the water.

If you plan to play catch-and-release, circle hooks stand out as the safest catfish hooks.

However, catfish have an easier time escaping the hook while you try to pull them out, so a circle hook can make fishing more difficult.

Despite that point, you can rest easy knowing you increased the odds of the catfish surviving when you use a circle hook.

Kahle Hook

Kahle hooks are similar to circle hooks. They have a deeper curve around the rod, but the hook comes in at a deep angle. 

person tying a hook onto their fishing line

The shape makes it easier for wide-mouth fish to get stuck on the hook. For example, the catfish have an easier time biting around the hook, but the sharp hook angle gets it stuck in the mouth.

Because of the shape, the hook won’t work on other fish types. So if you plan to use a Kahle hook, you need to accept that other fish won’t be able to bite around the hook, so they may steal the bait. If you don’t want to risk this, you should try a different hook.

However, if your fishing area primarily contains wide-mouthed fish, you should try the Kahle hook. Doing so will help you catch more catfish and keep them on the hook while you reel them in.

J Hook

J hooks focus on helping you catch fish and keeping them on the hooks. They have a straighter back portion with a deep curve at the hook. The shape resembles the letter J, with the hook portion coming up higher, so it goes deep into a fish’s mouth.

silver fishing hook on wood background

The J hook works great since it helps the hook stay in the fish once you catch it. It also goes deeper into the fish, so it can kill the catfish.

The hook works excellent for catfish since they have giant mouths, so it won’t slip out if the hook goes deep enough as long as you use the right size.

However, the hook is more difficult to take out of the catfish. On the bright side, your catfish won’t get away as easily if you use a J hook while you fish. J hooks work great if you intend to keep the catfish you catch. 

Octopus Hook

Sometimes, people mistake octopus hooks for circle hooks, but they have a few differences.

an octopus hook for catfish
  • Octopus hooks stay in fish easier.
  • They go a bit deeper than circle hooks, so they sometimes kill catfish.
  • They don’t go as deep as the four other hook types.

An octopus hook is similar to a circle hook, but it curves more at the top and has a sharper hook. It easily hooks catfish and wide-mouth fish just like a circle hook, but it stays attached to the catfish.

Since it goes deeper into the fish, it increases the odds of killing the catfish. However, it still has a lower mortality rate than J hooks, Kahle hooks, and treble hooks.

Because of this, the octopus hook stands out as a safer option. However, it does a better job of holding onto fish than a circle hook, so you need to pick it if you want a balance of catching fish and not harming them.

Final Thoughts

As you prepare for your catfishing trip, you’ll need to choose the best hooks for catfish. You can go through the list, see which ones you like, and give them a try.

If you can’t decide which one to get, it doesn’t hurt to buy multiple fishing hooks and see which one helps you the most.

While the above hooks all work for catfishing and can help you succeed, you need to see which one works best.

That way, you can help yourself catch more fish. So, pick your favorite options, go on your trip, and go bring home some catfish!

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