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How Dangerous are Raccoons?

This time of year, raccoons are a potential pest. You might notice one going through your garbage, hear them in the attic or through the walls, and maybe even encounter one during the day in your yard.

As is the case with many infestations, spotting these critters often means several could be living in your home already. However, for a homeowner, it’s never advised to get rid of the raccoons yourself, as they’re especially dangerous for these reasons:

1. Carrying Multiple Diseases

blog-raccoonMany associate raccoons with rabies, and that’s a fair assumption. Raccoons are a primary carrier of the rabies virus in the U.S. How do you know a raccoon is rabid? It usually displays a combination of the following:

  • Erratic behavior
  • Staggering around or a lethargic demeanor
  • Discharge around the eyes and mouth
  • Wet, matted hair
  • Making high-pitched noises
  • Self-mutilating behavior

But, that’s not all. Raccoons additionally carry roundworm, with eggs and shells found in their feces, and leptospirosis, a disease that can be transmitted to pets and humans through an attack.

For this latter issue, leptospirosis, a bacterial disease, continues to live in contaminated water and soil and may cause liver failure and kidney damage in humans.

2. Property Damage

Your trash isn’t the only thing you have to worry about. Raccoons cause a significant amount of property damage.

Inside your house, the issues are the same as with other rodents, including gnawing through electrical wires and damaging insulation. Yet, in addition to this, raccoons target your yard, digging up gardens, shrubs, and grass in a search for insects, plants, vegetables, and fruits to eat.

3. Attacks

Raccoon attacks are fairly rare, but when they happen, they can be serious. In fact, raccoons have been known to kill cats and small dogs and injure larger dogs.

To humans, cuts and scratches could lead to major health implications, because of all diseases listed above. Should you experience an attack, it’s essential to go to a hospital immediately to be vaccinated for rabies.

Because of these risks, raccoon removal should only be done by the professionals. If you think you’ve got an infestation, give Eliminate ‘Em a call for 24-7 pest control services. Our exterminators will come out to your location that day to assess your property and provide a solution.