Keeping Raccoons Away From Your Yard

A family member of mine owns a lovely home in a suburban community a few hours away from Chicago. Some time ago I decided to pay her a faithful visit since we had not seen each other in so long.

After arriving and surveying the front of her home thoroughly, I greeted her with a displeased look accompanied by subtle sympathy. My obnoxious reaction had been targeted towards the repulsive jumble of rattled vegetation that she called a yard. It was an absolute mess. The trash can had been tipped, her yard grass had been deliberately ripped from the earth, feces were spread awkwardly on the ground, and the sides of her home were scratched up pretty badly.

I asked her about the mess and she confessed to me that she was at constant war with the pests that chose to designate her property as their personal residence. She was tired of constantly cleaning up after their nightly escapades. The most annoying of them all was the raccoon pack that discreetly established themselves as the rulers of her yard. Their lack of concern for her aggressive shooing tactics led her to give up on them. She once considered installing an electric fence but eventually came to her senses after thinking about the potential harm that the fence could bring to her young children.

She modestly asked for my help and I was more than happy to give her advice about getting rid of those pesky ‘coons.

I told her about the general problems that were affiliated with raccoons:

  • Raccoons adapt very well to almost any environment with ample food and water sources.
  • You will rarely witness raccoons in the act because they are nocturnal. The only sign of their presence is a tattered lawn with occasional feces lying round.
  • Raccoons will eat virtually any food that they can put their grubby little paws on.
  • Raccoons are wild animals, so handle them with caution! They are infamously known for their susceptibility to viral diseases, such as rabies, canine distemper, and raccoon parvoviral enteritis. Also, their feces may contain raccoon roundworm spores, which can seriously sicken humans if inhaled.
  • Raccoons are not easily intimidated and can be ferocious animals; test them and they may perhaps sink their sharp teeth into your precious skin.

Tips for Getting Rid of Raccoons:

You must make sure that your home is not a desirable location for raccoons to inhabit.

  • Secure the lid of your trash can (e.g. attach a bungee cord to both handles and let its elastic rope naturally fasten the top of the can).
  • Station your trash can so that raccoons will not be able to knock it down easily (e.g. put a heavy brick inside).
  • Apply raccoon repellent granules onto the lawn. Granules last longer than liquids and have a stronger scent.
  • Install a scarecrow sprinkler on your lawn. (Bird-X’s HydroBlast ScareCrow sprinkler is motion-activated and shoots an extraordinarily potent water spray that scares animals away.)
  • Most importantly, consider investing in an electronic, sonic pest repeller. (The Bird-X Yard Gard will surely do the job but if you have a more serious pest problem, check out CritterBlaster PRO.)

I wished her the best and assured that if she followed these precautions and guidelines, she should definitely see results in no time.