Raccoons in the Porch: Prevention and Removal

Pesky raccoons finding their way onto your porch can be quite a nuisance. These curious creatures, known for their dexterity and resourcefulness, can create havoc in your outdoor living space.

Whether you’re dealing with raccoons scavenging for food, nesting, or simply seeking shelter, it’s important to know how to manage their presence effectively.

In this guide, we’ll explore practical solutions and strategies for dealing with raccoons in your porch.

How to Remove the Raccoons from the Porch

Here are some ways to remove raccoons from your porch:

  1. Install Deterrents: Consider planting cucumber near your fence and garden because raccoons dislike the smell, and it will keep them away. You can also deter them by soaking a few tennis balls in ammonia and placing them near their suspected nesting areas. Additionally, using vinegar on items they might try to eat can be effective.

  2. Seal Access Points: To prevent raccoons from entering your home, deck, or shed, use materials like wooden boards, wire mesh, netting, or newspaper to seal any potential access points. Regularly monitor these areas to ensure raccoons aren’t finding new ways to break through.

  3. Cover Water Sources: Raccoons are always in search of water sources, so be vigilant in preventing access. Cover ponds and pools, empty containers that collect rainwater, and avoid leaving out water dishes for them. Also, secure your garbage to avoid attracting them.

  4. Use Live Traps: Employ live traps to catch and remove both mother raccoons and their offspring. After the raccoons are captured, clean out the nest space under your home or deck, removing all bedding materials. Seal all access points to prevent reentry.

  5. Secure the Area: Recognizing raccoons’ dexterity, it’s crucial to secure the area effectively. Consider investing in a padlock or combination lock to prevent their entry or access.

  6. Use Motion-Activated Sprinklers: Install motion-activated sprinklers to discourage raccoons from visiting your property. Store pet food indoors, and use exclusion fences to protect areas like compost piles and fish ponds.

Note that raccoons can be aggressive, so exercise caution when dealing with them.

Risks of Having Raccoons in the Porch

Having raccoons on your porch can present several risks to both your health and property. Here are some of the dangers associated with raccoons on your porch:

  • Rabies: Raccoons are known carriers of rabies, a life-threatening disease for humans. If you or your pets are bitten by a raccoon, immediate medical attention is essential.

  • Property Damage: Raccoons can cause significant damage to your property. They have a knack for rolling up freshly laid sod, feasting on fruits and vegetables, and digging unsightly holes in your yard.

  • Disease Carriers: Raccoons can carry diseases that pose a threat to humans. Cleaning up raccoon droppings without proper safety equipment can expose you to these harmful pathogens.

  • Aggressive Behavior: Particularly during birthing seasons when females are hyper-vigilant with their young, raccoons can exhibit aggressive behavior. They may pose a threat to dogs and cats and have been known to harm or even kill small pets.

  • Garbage Disarray: Raccoons are notorious for rummaging through trash cans, leaving a mess of scattered garbage all over your property.

To mitigate these risks, it’s essential to take steps to remove raccoons from your porch safely.

For more information you can consult our full guide on ‘How to get rid of Raccoons.’

Cleaning up Raccoon Droppings from the Porch

Here are some steps for safely cleaning up raccoon droppings from your porch:

  1. Wear Protective Gear: Prioritize your safety by wearing thick disposable gloves and a mask. This protective gear will shield you from potential pathogens present in the droppings.

  2. Scoop Up the Droppings: Use a shovel or a plastic bag to carefully scoop up the droppings. Ensure that you collect not only the droppings but also any surrounding soil or debris.

  3. Dispose of the Droppings: Place the collected droppings in a plastic bag and securely tie it. Put the bag in a covered trash can that is inaccessible to other animals.

  4. Clean the Area: To eliminate any raccoon roundworm eggs that may be present, use boiling water to thoroughly clean every surface or item that came into contact with the droppings. If boiling water is not an option, you can use a 10% bleach solution to dislodge the roundworm eggs so that they can be rinsed away.

  5. Wash Your Hands: After completing the cleanup process, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water to ensure that you are free from any potential contaminants.

It’s essential to be aware that raccoon droppings may contain raccoon roundworm eggs, which can pose risks to both people and pets.

Encountering a Raccoon on the Porch

If you encounter a raccoon on your porch, taking these steps can help ensure your safety:

Firstly, stay calm, as raccoons are typically not aggressive towards humans but may become so if they feel threatened; avoid sudden movements or loud noises.

Secondly, back away slowly from the raccoon while maintaining visual contact and refrain from turning your back or running, which could provoke it.

Thirdly, never attempt to approach or touch the raccoon, even if it seems friendly, as raccoons can carry diseases like rabies. If the raccoon lingers or appears sick or injured, contact animal control or a wildlife removal service to safely remove it from your property.

Lastly, if you must be on your porch while the raccoon is present, wear protective clothing, including gloves and long sleeves, to prevent potential scratches or bites.

Natural Ways to Repel Raccoons from Your Porch

Here are some natural methods to effectively repel raccoons from your porch:

  1. Pepper: Raccoons possess a keen sense of smell, and spices like cinnamon, black pepper, or cayenne pepper can be bothersome to them. Create a natural raccoon repellent by mixing cayenne pepper and onion in boiling water. Spray this mixture on your porch and yard at least twice a week and after rainfall.

  2. Ammonia: Raccoons strongly dislike the scent of ammonia. Soak rags in ammonia and place them strategically under your porch, in the bottom of garbage cans, or at the base of trees in your yard. You can also use bowls filled with ammonia placed in targeted areas.

  3. Peppermint: Planting peppermint around your porch and near entry points to your home can effectively deter raccoons. Alternatively, use a bowl of peppermint essential oil to emit a strong scent that discourages their presence.

  4. Epsom Salts: Raccoons are averse to the smell of Epsom salts. Scatter Epsom salts in areas where raccoons tend to roam around your porch and yard.

  5. Onions: The strong scent of fresh onions is enough to deter raccoons. Place slices of onion strategically around your porch and yard to keep them away.

  6. Vinegar: Raccoons also dislike the smell of vinegar. Soak rags in vinegar and place them around your porch and yard to act as a deterrent.

It’s important to recognize that natural repellents may not be effective for all raccoons, and it may require a combination of these methods to successfully keep them away from your porch.

If you’re uncertain about how to use these repellents safely or if they prove ineffective, don’t hesitate to seek professional assistance.