Is It Dangerous To Have Raccoons Hanging Around My San Francisco Bay Area Yard?

Last Modified on October 11, 2021 by Zachary Smith

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Your property is every raccoon’s dream. The ideal weather of the Bay Area combined with the many attractants in your yard is the perfect recipe for raccoon activity. Raccoons may seem kind of cute from a distance, but they are pests after all, and like all pests, they can be threatening to your property and your health.

Raccoons are mid-sized mammals with round bodies, long bushy tails, and a black mask of fur covering the area around their eyes. They are great climbers, often traveling through vents, chimneys, windows, and other high-up places near the roof. Wherever raccoons can find ample sources of food, water, and shelter, they’re happy to stay. They frequent barns, dens, trees, caves, and even use abandoned vehicles as hiding places.While not every single individual raccoon is dangerous, you can never know which ones may be carrying rabies. Raccoon activity poses several threats, including varying levels of property damage and adverse health consequences. Here are just a few of the dangers that come with raccoon activity:

  • They are known to be common carriers of rabies, roundworm, and leptospirosis.
  • They can get into your food, causing a mess and potential damage.
  • They can inflict wounds on domestic pets like cats and dogs, usually at night.
  • They carry fleas and ticks on them, exposing you to other infestations.
  • They carry harmful bacteria on their fur and spread it around after hanging in the trash.
  • They rummage through the garbage and spread it around your yard.
  • They spread pathogens around, contaminating your space and threatening your health.
  • They tend to bite when they feel threatened or cornered.

Preventing Racoons In Your San Francisco Bay Area Yard

Considering the long list of dangers and threats that come with raccoon activity, you’ll want to do everything you can to prevent them at all costs. That means changing habits, making structural modifications, and consistently maintaining your property. To discourage raccoons from entering your yard, here are a few things you can try:

  • Block off all entry points around home, including roof seams, baseboards, attic vents, etc.
  • Empty your garbage regularly so decay doesn’t build up.
  • Get a big dog to intimidate and discourage them from entering your property.
  • Install fencing around the perimeter of your yard.
  • Make sure not to leave food (pet or human) outside overnight.
  • Promptly clean up any spilled food or birdseed outside
  • Reduce excess vegetation, yard debris, and harborage materials around your property.
  • Regularly trim any overhanging branches to prevent roof access.
  • Use a chimney vent and keep the chimney properly capped at all times.
  • Use trash bins with lids that lock into place with handles or clamps.

All of these precautionary measures can go a long way in keeping raccoons off your property. However, it’s important to remember that you can only do so much. Trying to get rid of a raccoon isn’t worth risking your safety, and you should never deal with these threatening pests on your own.

If you detect any raccoon activity on your property, you must keep your distance. Never try to approach a wild animal. Raccoons usually keep to themselves, but when they feel threatened or cornered, they can become defensive, using their teeth and claws to attack.

Professional Racoon Control Is Always Best

Contact the team at Smith’s Pest Management for safe raccoon removal services. Whether you have an existing raccoon problem, or you’re just seeking general raccoon control advice, give us a call today. Our team of pest professionals is familiar with raccoon behavior, habits, and hiding places, and we can identify all problem areas around your property. From there, we treat the whole yard and return periodically to make sure things stay raccoon free throughout the year.

Author Bio: Zach Smith

Landscape Pro Turned Gopher Pro: Owner, Zach Smith, graduate of Cal Poly’s Horticulture program worked nine years as a landscape professional- dealing with gophers, moles, and ground squirrels and was quickly recruited by other local gardeners. Fast forward to the past 15+ years, where Zach and his team trap and remove burrowing pests from residential, municipal and commercial properties throughout the San Francisco Bay area, from Marin to Monterey.