Discovering raccoons inside your home can be a disconcerting and potentially hazardous situation. These resourceful creatures, known for their dexterous paws and inquisitive nature, can cause a range of problems once they find their way indoors.
From structural damage to health concerns stemming from their waste, addressing raccoon intrusions is of utmost importance.
In this guide, we will delve into the various aspects of dealing with raccoons inside your home, providing insights on prevention, safe removal, and necessary precautions to ensure the well-being of your household and property.
Stay informed and prepared to handle this common urban wildlife issue effectively.
How to Remove Raccoons from a House
Here are some methods for removing raccoons from a house:
- Identify Their Hiding Spots: Begin by locating the raccoons’ harborage areas, such as attics, chimneys, or crawl spaces.
- Remove Food Sources: Eliminate any potential food sources that may be attracting raccoons to your property. This includes securing trash cans, removing compost, bringing in pet food, and minimizing birdseed.
- Seal Entry Points: Prevent raccoons from entering your home by sealing up any possible entryways. This can involve capping chimneys, patching holes, and installing screens over vents.
- Use Live Traps: If raccoons are still present, consider using live traps to capture them. You can either hire a professional wildlife removal service or attempt DIY trapping methods.
- Implement Humane Deterrents: Use humane methods to discourage raccoons from visiting your property. These can include motion-activated sprinklers, commercially available scent deterrents, and installing exclusion fences.
- Seek Professional Help: If you’re unsure about how to handle raccoon removal, it’s advisable to contact a humane wildlife removal expert for assistance.
It’s important to note that raccoons are robust animals, so ensure that your home is raccoon-free before sealing it up.
Check potential hiding spots for raccoon babies to make sure none are left behind.
Prevention is also imperative, so avoid leaving pet food outside where raccoons can access it and secure your trash cans to cut off their food supply.
Risks of Having Raccoons Inside a House
Having raccoons inside a house can pose several health risks to humans and pets. Below are some of the dangers associated with raccoons in a house:
- Infectious Diseases: Raccoons can carry infectious diseases such as salmonella, giardiasis, and leptospirosis, which can be transmitted to humans and pets through contact with their urine, feces, or saliva.
- Structural Damage: Raccoons can cause significant damage to a house’s structure by chewing and biting the framework, insulation, and other building materials.
- Contamination: Raccoons frequently defecate and urinate in the same place, creating piles of feces known as raccoon latrines. These latrines can contaminate the air and soil with harmful bacteria and parasites.
- Property Damage: Raccoons can damage property by ripping holes in the roof, walls, and insulation to create nests.
- Risk to Young Children: Young children are particularly vulnerable to diseases from raccoons, as they often play outdoors and on the ground where they can come into direct contact with raccoon urine and feces.
It is crucial to remove raccoons from a house as soon as possible to prevent these health risks. If you suspect that you have a raccoon problem, it is best to call a humane wildlife removal expert to handle the situation safely and effectively.
For more details, check out our guide on ‘How to Get Rid of Raccoons.’
How to Disinfect a House After a Raccoon Invasion
Here are the best steps to disinfect a house after a raccoon invasion:
- Wear Protective Gear: Before beginning the cleaning process, ensure you are wearing rubber or plastic gloves and a mask to protect yourself from contact with raccoon urine, feces, and contaminants.
- Remove Contaminated Materials: Take out all contaminated materials, including insulation, fabrics, and debris. Double bag them for proper disposal.
- Clean All Surfaces: Thoroughly clean all surfaces, such as floors, countertops, cabinets, and drawers, using a general-purpose household disinfectant cleaning product or a bleach solution (1.5 cups of household bleach in 1 gallon of water).
- Mop Hard Floors: If you have hard floors, mop them with disinfectant. For dirt floors in outbuildings, spray them with disinfectant.
- Ventilate the Home: Ensure proper ventilation during cleaning to reduce the risk of inhaling infectious dust.
- Clean Raccoon Latrines: Spray raccoon latrines with water to minimize the risk of stirring up debris and infectious dust into the air. Carefully collect feces and dispose of them in double bags.
- Reinsulate to Code: After cleaning and disinfecting, reinsulate the area according to building code standards.
Highlighting the significance of the matter, addressing the aftermath of a raccoon incursion can pose dangers and is most suitably entrusted to adept wildlife removal specialists.
Their possession of the necessary equipment and expertise guarantees a secure and comprehensive restoration of the affected region.
Recommended Cleaning Products
When it comes to disinfecting a house following a raccoon intrusion, you’ll find a range of recommended cleaning products at your disposal.
Two notably effective options include Unsmoke Microban QGC, a versatile household disinfectant that can be expertly diluted at a ratio of 8 oz per gallon of water for thorough cleaning.
Another effective choice is a bleach solution, easily crafted by combining 1.5 cups of household bleach with 1 gallon of water (or a proportion of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water).
However, it’s crucial to exercise caution when handling bleach. Be sure to don rubber or plastic gloves to protect yourself.
Furthermore, take heed that bleach is not suitable for all surfaces and should never be mixed with other cleaning products. To ensure safety and effectiveness, always follow the precise instructions found on the labels of these cleaning products.
These precautions are vital to shield yourself from potential exposure to harmful bacteria and viruses that may be lurking in raccoon feces, urine, or saliva.
How to Prevent Future Raccoon Home Invasions
Here are some tips to prevent future raccoon home invasions:
- Inspect your property: The first step in protecting your home against future intrusions is a thorough inspection of your property, including the roof. It’s important to know where to look for potential entry points.
- Remove the attractants: The easiest way to prevent a raccoon invasion is to remove the things from your property that attract them in the first place. This should include:
- Using secure covers for your trash cans
- Don’t leave food outside, such as on your patio, or for a pet (or even other wild animals)
- Remove wood piles (where raccoons like to nest)
- Trim overgrown bushes (another place they like to nest)
- Remove branches or trellises that allow access to your roof
- Cover open spaces leading to under your house (another place they might like to nest) .
- Scare them off: If you’re seeing raccoons in your area too often, you may want to try to scare them off. Here are some things you can do:
- Install motion-activated sprinklers or lights to deter raccoons.
- Set traps where raccoons and opossums frequent, preferably in areas away from public view and shielded from direct sun to reduce capture stress.
- Secure your home: Seal any openings in your home’s exterior, such as gaps in the roof or walls. This will help prevent raccoons from entering your home.
By following these tips, you can help prevent future raccoon home invasions.