Raccoons may look harmless and you may consider them to be only a nuisance, but they can cause serious damage and injuries. A hungry raccoon might dig holes in your lawn and tear garbage bags open. After it begins to feel safe on your property, it may attack pets or farm animals. Raccoons could even attempt to enter your home.
These furry mammals usually look for food during the night in order to avoid being seen. There are many ways to detect raccoons on your property, though, even if you can actually spot them. Vegetables in the garden may go missing at night, for example, or seed from a bird feeder may vanish.
You can also look for a latrine. No, raccoons haven’t figured out how to use toilets. They leave excrement in large piles that are known as latrines. Rather than defecating in random locations, they prefer to select certain rocks, trees and stumps for this purpose. Unfortunately, your deck or attic may also become a latrine.
These creatures dig holes to find worms to eat, so make sure to check your yard every few days. While holes aren’t necessarily a sign of raccoons, if you notice them in conjunction with scratch marks, tree damage and partially eaten food, it’s likely you’re dealing with raccoons.
It’s vital to take action if these animals are present. Raccoons can kill domesticated birds, fish, dogs and cats. They might also attack you or a neighbor, especially if they have rabies. A raccoon could cause significant damage to your home as well. It may climb down the chimney or use brute force to create a convenient rooftop entrance.
Use caution if you handle objects that raccoons bite or touch. Such items may include bird feeders, food remnants, trash and feces. These animals can transmit diseases through indirect contact. They spread tularemia, parvovirus enteritis, rabies and various parasites, according to the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management.
Some people scare raccoons away by yelling at them. You can also use outdoor lights, put up a scarecrow or turn on a boombox. The problem is that these animals learn quickly. Such techniques may prove useful at first, but a raccoon will eventually realize that it has nothing to worry about. This is particularly true in urban areas.
To avoid injuries and diseases, it’s best to hire a local pest control expert. Professionals know how to remove raccoons and prevent them from returning to your property. If you live in the Houston area, contact ABC Home & Commercial Services. We’ll provide you with more details and a quote.