Don’t let a raccoon’s cute appearance fool you. They may look cute and cuddly but they can wreak serious havoc on your property. On top of that, these intelligent and furry creatures can carry rabies and other parasites.
Although some property owners say that raccoons offer a few benefits, including eating pests and rodents, those benefits are often outweighed by their drawbacks and you are better off keeping these animals off your property. If you want to know how to keep raccoons away, here are some helpful tips to consider.
Raccoons thrive better in urban and suburban settings, leveraging their intelligence, and the fact that they are omnivores, to their advantage.
Some experts say that the only way to keep these wily creatures off your property is to invest in quality fences. Some common pieces of advice that you might encounter, including the use of lights, sounds and chemical repellants, only work for the short term. Because of their intelligence, raccoons often develop a work-around for these or simply learn how to ignore them.
The first thing that you should do is make your home inaccessible to these critters. These tactics include trimming tree branches and bushes around your property so raccoons can’t utilize them to get into your home via the roof or chimney. If you have chimneys, invest in chimney caps and have these checked if you suspect that a mother raccoon has built its nest there.
Seal other possible entry points with mesh hardware cloth. The best time to do this is during the autumn when babies are most likely out. If you wish to do this before or after autumn, make sure that there are no baby raccoons living in your home first.
Make food inaccessible to raccoons. This includes your garbage, pet food, the fish in your pond, and fruits and veggies planted in your garden.
What can you do if you suspect that these little bandits have made a nest inside your home?
The first thing that you need to do is to determine whether you actually have unwanted tenants. For this, you can place newspapers in small openings the raccoons may have used as entry points to your home. After ten days, check whether the newspapers have been dislodged; if they have, it is highly likely you have unwanted guests.
If there are raccoons in your home, you may want a professional to deal with a family of raccoons to ensure they survive their eviction. Most attempts to evict raccoons by homeowners result in failure, damaged property and inhumane treatment of both the mother raccoon and its kits. People watch for the raccoon to come out at night, then seal the entry hole. This only results in the mother scratching her fingers bloody to reopen the hole or her breaking open another hole to get to her babes, causing more damage to the home.
Many people trap the lactating mother and drop her off “in the country”. This is illegal. Check State Laws BEFORE SETTING TRAPS! Few people realize how raccoon feces contaminate their transport vehicle trunk or bed where groceries or pets are carried. Others try moth balls or pepper sprays and the like, but these tactics only drive the raccoon deeper into the attic or soffit.
Do-it-yourselfers typically don’t realize they need to evict the entire family and end up sentencing the kits to horrible starvation-dehydration deaths. Then they call a professional to come in and remove the decaying carcasses. Besides how cruel this is, it costs a lot more to find kit carcasses in the attic or soffit, remove them and the odor than it does to capture and remove the entire family then seal the entry hole With Warranty!
Also, enlist a professional to remove raccoon waste which may contain roundworm eggs. Insurance companies require a professional estimate for attic clean up and restoration.
Bottom line? If you really want to know how to remove or how to keep raccoons away, call in a professional wildlife removal team as soon as you realize you have a problem.