There may be instances whereby you need to remove a raccoon safely from the confines of your home or garden but given that they are unpredictable wild animals, they should certainly be treated with caution. Despite being wild animals they can also be found in city areas, or near water. They usually like to eat an omnivore diet, so a mixture of meat and vegetables. So do not be alarmed if you find them rummaging through your garbage waste in order to scrounge for scraps of food like foxes do.
As with any other wild animal, as long as you do not provoke or demonstrate any threat or danger towards them, they should not attack you unless you are acting aggressively towards them, especially young raccoons, whereby the adult ones will be protective over them.
Things You Can Do To Deter Them
There are a few things you can try in order to prevent them from venturing into your home that are non-evasive and not harmful.
- Not leaving your trash out for days. Ideally, it is best to place your trash out on the day it is being collected in order to deter the raccoons from sniffing out scraps of food waste and then rummaging through your bins in order to find it.
- Dogs as a deterrent. Having a dog at home who can keep guard is likely to ward off any raccoons that attempt to enter inside your home. They can be known to have confrontations, but this tends to be more likely when a mother raccoon wants to protect her young.
- Refrain from leaving any traces of pet food outdoors. It is wise not to leave bowls of pet food or even at times bird feeders out in the garden if you suspect you live in an area where raccoons are rife as they will be drawn to the smell of food.
- Use of Spices and Mint. Raccoons tend to eat almost anything, but they do not like strong-tasting foods. So planting things like chillies, garlic, mint, cayenne pepper or even tomatoes will be off-putting to their delicate taste buds.
- Installing a Sprinkler. The sudden activation of a sprinkler system will most likely surprise them, particularly when the water starts shooting out. They will not be expecting this, so it is likely to be a deterrent to encroach any further.
Things To Avoid Doing
Though you may be fed up with having a gaze of raccoons venturing into your property, you do not want to resort to hurting them before a professional is able to visit and rectify the situation. Things such as the following can be considered a little drastic.
- Installing Electric Fences. Raccoons tend to dig into the earth anyway so setting up barbed wire fencing around your garden would not only look unattractive but could be harmful to the raccoons if they were to be electrocuted. Just install some floodlights instead as they are more inclined to appear in the dark.
- Raccoon excrement can be very toxic. Areas, where they like to leave their excrement, are at the base of trees, in between logs, piles of wood, boulders, and then in garages, attics and porches. As their excrement can contain traces of ammonia and parasites it is important not to try and remove it yourself as it can be very toxic to humans but also to your pets. Being able to identify what it looks like is certainly useful so that you are aware.
- Setting Up Harmful Traps. Though you may find them to be a nuisance, it is not advisable to try and make your own harmful trap whereby they can become injured or even die a slow painful death. They are wild animals that do not forget and are not able to distinguish right from wrong with regards to behave like humans.
Call In the SWAT Experts
Essentially you want to call in the professionals who will be able to deal with the raccoons by removing them from your property in a safe and calm manner. They will also be able to carry out an inspection to identify where the raccoons have been entering your home and why. If left untreated they have been known to cause significant damage to certain areas of the home such as the chimneys, insulation in the loft and air ducts which could result in costly repairs, which you would certainly want to avoid if you could.