Raccoons are an incessant problem in suburbs and residential neighborhoods across the country. They are often spotted in wooded areas close to homes and parks, or in houses, occupying attics, crawl spaces, and roofs. Raccoons are fascinating creatures and should be respected; however, it is understandable that they can be a nuisance to homeowners. For this reason, there are creative methods to avoiding raccoon encounters, and preventing them from entering your property, and worse, your home. Read on to learn more about how to get rid of raccoons near your home.
Do Not Leave Pet Food Outside
Raccoons are omnivores, which mean they eat almost everything; from small invertebrates like frogs and crawfish, to fruits, nuts, and vegetables. Raccoons in residential areas are attracted to any food source, and pet food is a popular choice. Many pet owners have pets that are primarily outdoor pets. They will leave bowls of cat or dog food on the patio or in the dog house. Raccoons will immediately pick up the scent and be attracted to come and steal the pet’s food. Raccoons will also remember that this particular house is a guaranteed source of food, and will return night after night to retrieve more. If you leave your pets’ food outside, be sure to bring it back in before night fall. This way, you can help avoid attracting raccoons to your house.
Secure Your Home from the Outside
It is common for homeowners to leave access points open to their house without even realizing it. For example, doggy doors are installed in homes all over the country, and raccoons can enter your home through these doggy doors. This is more likely to happen if you live near wooded areas. Besides pet flaps, there are other vulnerable spots on homes that raccoons can access, such as holes on your roof, garages, crawl spaces, and under porches. Before dark, lock any doggy doors you have in your home and be sure to get annual or bi-annual home inspections to make sure your home is secure. Not only can this prevent unwanted animal intrusion, it can lower your energy costs as well.
Bring in Your Garbage Cans at Night
Raccoons are commonly seen rummaging through garbage and trash cans. This is because they know there will be scraps of food in them for an easy meal. By leaving your garbage cans out overnight, you are giving raccoon colonies an open invitation to come dine in your driveway. Trash simply attracts raccoons. To avoid huge messes and frequent visits from raccoons, bring in your garbage cans at night.