Did you just find a Raccoon in your attic? Is there a way to remove this animal and keep them away? You’ll learn everything you need to know in this article.
You can remove Raccoon from your attic in two major ways. Firstly, you can apply a Raccoon eviction fluid; secondly, you can use a trap. Both methods are highly effective if done appropriately.
Signs You Have A Raccoon In Your Attic
Some common signs indicating the presence of a Raccoon in your attic include holes on your roof, strong odor, Raccoon footprints during winter, and feces and urine in your attic.
You necessarily don’t need a professional to confirm the presence of a Raccoon in your attic. You can do it yourself. All you need to do is to look out for some common signs signifying their presence.
The animal typically weighs 5 to 26 kg (11 to 57 lb). With such significant weight, you’ll hear loud noises as the animal walks through your attic. You could also hear their cries. If you hear such noises coming from your attic coupled with the following signs, you may have Raccoon up there.
The main signs to look for that you have a raccoon in your attic include
1. Holes on your roof
Raccoons can enter your attic if they find a hole on your roof. Therefore, if you leave your roof unchecked, animals like this can find their way into the attic. A raccoon could enlarge small holes if left unblocked. Thus, when you inspect your roof, and you find a large hole enough to accommodate a Raccoon, your attic may be housing the animal already.
2. Strong odor
Raccoons urinate and defecate in their den, and a buildup of this overtime may give off a strong smell. The smell may first be restricted to the attic, but as the buildup continues, it’ll eventually find its way to your room. Besides urine and feces, The strong odor can also be due to rotten foods or dead animal remains brought into the attic by Raccoon.
3. Raccoon footprints during winter
It is easy to spot Raccoon footprints during winter. If the animal has been walking in and out of your home, you’ll find its footpaths on your roofing.
4. Raccoon feces and urine in your attic
An easy sign to know the presence of Raccoon in your attic is that you’ll begin to see their urine stains on your ceiling. They often urinate and defecate in their vicinity; thus, once you see their urine, it is a sign that the animal might be staying in your attic. Raccoon feces and urine often contains dangerous bacteria. Therefore, if you find their waste, you should seek professional help for the cleanup.
5. Electrical problems
Raccoons like to destroy almost everything. Tampering with your electrical appliances isn’t an exemption. The animal might begin to chew the wires in your attic resulting in electrical issues. Adolescent raccoons are more likely to chew wires since they need things to soothe the aching gums of their new teeth.
Are Raccoons in the Attic Dangerous?
Raccoons in the attic are potential dangers to you, your family, and your pet. Their waste contains dangerous bacteria that could harm you and your family. They could also damage your home appliances; hence, they are dangerous to your home as well.
Raccoons are hazardous when living in your house. They can harm directly and indirectly. They could directly chew your electrical appliances, resulting in electrical problems, electrocution, and electrical sparks that could ignite your building. They can also damage your roofing, resulting in leaks.
Raccoons could also indirectly cause harm. For instance, their feces contain disease-causing microorganisms like Roundworm (Baylisascaris procyonis), Salmonella, and Leptospirosis. These harmful bacteria could find their way into your home through the attic, exposing you and your household to dangerous diseases.
For instance, Leptospirosis, one of the bacteria found in the animal urine, could cause meningitis or kidney failure if it ingested or touches an open wound. The Raccoon roundworm could also cause dangerous infections. It is very dangerous that you necessarily don’t have to touch or ingest the bacteria before it can infect you.
By mere inhaling its airborne eggs, you could be infected. Once the bacteria gets into your body, it attacks key organs, including the eyes, Spinal cord, and the brain. This could cause significant damage, or in severe cases, it could lead to death.
How Do Raccoons Get In The Attic
Raccoons are good climbers; they can get in the attic through nearby tree branches hanging over the roofing. Once on the roofing, they look for a suitable part to chew and scratch and make their way into the attic.
Raccoons can get in the attic because they are good climbers. They love to stay in a warm, safe place to raise their little ones. Thus, once in need of shelter, they begin to look for places with such features.
If you have tree beaches extending over your house, they’ll climb up the tree, travel through its branches, and land on your roof. On the roof, they look for any available hole. They begin to chew and scratch the hole until there’s enough space to allow them to pass through, and they will eventually land in the attic.
Besides tree branches, they can get into the attic by climbing the corner of the house. They can also climb a downspout up into the attic.
What do raccoons in the attic sound like?
Raccoon in the attic makes vocal noise heavier than those of squirrels, rats, and mice. This is because they a larger animal. They also make thumping and scratching noises in the attic.
Raccoons are one of the largest animals you will find in urban settings. Therefore, considering their large body size and weight, their noise can be easily distinguished as the sound of a bigger animal. If you hear the following sounds in your attic, you may be looking at the possibility of having a Raccoon in there.
If you hear a thumping sound in your attic, it may be a sign that there’s a Raccoon in there. They make this noise by jumping around, perhaps while playing with their young ones. Being a larger animal, when Raccoon jumps around in your attic, they might be shoving or destroying something. You may also hear such a sound when they pull heavy objects up into the attic.
Although squirrels and rats could scratch and make scratching noises, raccoons aren’t an exemption as well. Therefore, when you hear a scratching noise in your attic, you shouldn’t hesitate to confirm whether it is coming from a Raccoon or not.
3. Vocal noises
When you hear heavy vocal noises coming from your attic, it may be a sign that there’s an attic living up there. If you hear varying vocal noises, there may be more than a Raccoon up there; it might be an entire family.
The animal makes chirping sounds, and you could hear their cries or growls. If you have a family of raccoons living in your attic, you may hear the sounds of crying babies.
Can raccoons in the attic make you sick?
Raccoons in the attic can expose you to dangerous infections, leading to complicated health problems. Their urine and feces contain dangerous bacteria that could harm you. Such harm could be through ingestion, inhalation, or skin contact.
The ordinary sight of a Raccoon may not make you sick, and you don’t necessarily have to touch the animal or be bitten by it to fall sick. The wastes they leave behind are enough to unleash catastrophe and expose your family and your pets to dangerous infections.
Some of the sickness that raccoons in your attic could cause include:
- Raccoon roundworms
1. Raccoon roundworms
This is one of the most dangerous infections caused by wild animals, and raccoons in your attic could expose you and your household to it. It is a rare but dangerous infection that affects the central nervous system.
The Parasite could be found in raccoons intestine and eventually find its way into the animal feces. This dangerous bacteria is resistant to chemical and physical cleaning; therefore, once a Raccoon poop and the bacteria is in it, it may remain in the environment for a significant period.
Once in the brain, the infection can shut down essential organs in the body, and in some cases, it could cause neurological impairment and eventually result in death.
This infection is often caused by the leptospira bacteria and can be found in the urine of an infected Raccoon. An infected person will show flu-like symptoms, including high fever and headaches. It can also cause kidney problems, and if left untreated, it can result in meningitis.
You could get sick when infected with this Parasite. It is found in the intestine of raccoons and passed out in the feces. Some of the symptoms of this infection include diarrhea, nausea, and dehydration.
This is one of the most common bacteria transmitted by raccoons. Salmonella can remain dormant for long and reactivate when in a favorable environment. Therefore, once in a place, it can remain a problem for a long time. It can be found in Raccoon feces and could cause abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, and high fever.
If a Raccoon bites you, perhaps while trying to trap or chase it out of your attic, you could have rabies. It is an infection transmitted through the saliva of an infected animal. Besides being bitten, you can also be infected by it through direct contact with your wound.
It is a viral infection affecting the nervous system. Common symptoms include weakness, flu, and fever. This infection could be disastrous if left untreated.
Can raccoons break through the ceiling?
Raccoons can break through ceilings. They may scratch the ceiling trying to peep through the hole and see what is underneath, and eventually, fall through the scratched space. They may also accidentally fall while jumping around in the attic.
Raccoons typically weigh 5 to 26 kg (11 to 57 lb). A mother Raccoon could weigh up to 26 Kg which could be related to the weight of an average eight years old child. Now, imagine an eight-year-old child running directly on the ceiling.
A raccoon can break through your ceiling using either of its two powers — its massive weight and its claws. It could keep jumping around, causing cracks and weakening the ceiling. If it jumps around the cracked or weakened part of the ceiling, it could fall directly into your room, bathroom, kitchen, or any other part of the house. It may also scratch and damage your ceiling and eventually fall through the scratched area.
How Do I Get Raccoons Out of My Attic?
You can get raccoons out of your attic by using Raccoon eviction fluids or by trapping. Both are highly efficient methods if appropriately done. However, the trapping method can be best done by a professional.
If you find a Raccoon in your attic or you notice a sign of it, you should hire a professional to help you out. Doing so will protect you from being contaminated with infection and also help you obtain a better result.
The two effective ways to get raccoons out of your attic include:
- Raccoon eviction fluid
- Trapping mother Raccoon
Raccoon eviction fluid
Raccoon eviction fluid is highly effective in chasing Raccoon out of your attic. It can effectively chase out mother Raccoon and its babies without harming both you and the animals. The fluid smells like a predator, warning mother Raccoon of an approaching boar male Raccoon.
The boar male Raccoon often hunts Raccoon kittens to dominate a territory; therefore, its presence smells a potential danger. If used appropriately, the fluid will force mother Raccoon to take her family out of your attic and find a new settlement.
After purchasing the eviction fluid, you should follow the steps below for its application:
- Seal all points of entry on the roof and leave only the main entrance. There’ll be more brown staining in the main entrance than in other entry areas.
- Drop about a tablespoon of the fluid at the main entrance
- Wait for a few days for the animal to leave your attic and relocate
- Cover the main entrance with a wadded newspaper to confirm if the animal has left your attic. If you check back and the newspaper has been tampered with, fix it again in the hole. If it remains the way you kept it for three straight days, there’s no more Raccoon in your attic.
- Fix the opened entrance
Trapping mother Raccoon
It is safer and better to hire a local wildlife operator to help with this approach because it requires specific skills and certain equipment that you may lack. The process includes:
- Paying attention to the sound to confirm it is that of a larger animal like Raccoon
- Set a trap at the main entrance where through which the animal enters the attic
- If you can’t climb the roofing to set the trap, lay it close to the fence or at the bottom of the tree through which the animal climb up to the attic
- If you trap mother Raccoon, go in to remove the babies
- Take the animal back to its natural habitat if your state law permits wildlife relocation.
- Fix the opened entrance
How long does it take to remove raccoons from the attic?
Removing raccoons from the attic can take between a day to a week. It can be completely done within a few hours if you hire a local wildlife operator, but it may cost more time if you decide to do it yourself.
The part that may take much of your time while trying to remove raccoons from your attic is trapping. If it’s not well placed, the animal may continue to avoid it or run over it, extending the removal time.
However, if you’re dealing with a mother Raccoon, once she has been captured, removing the babies should only cost a few hours if they’re not hidden in an inaccessible location like in the walls. In that case, you may have to open up the drywall to remove the animal. This may take a few hours as well.
If you opt for the Raccoon eviction fluid, you may have to wait for up to a week to convince the animal to leave with its kittens.
How much does it cost for a professional to remove raccoons from the attic?
Hiring a professional to remove raccoons from your attic can cost you up to $600. This service fee usually includes setting traps, relocating the animal, and cleaning up the affected area.
The price you’ll be charged to remove raccoons from your attic depends on the company you patronize. While some local wildlife operators might charge you less, some will charge you more. Some companies might charge you as little as $175 to remove the Raccoon without cleaning or repairing the affected area.
You may also find some professionals that’ll charge you up to $1,500 to trap mother Raccoon and its kittens and relocate the family. Such price usually includes assisting with the structural repairs. In other words, the cost of removing raccoons from the attic depends on three factors:
- The company you patronize
- Number of Raccoon to be removed
- How much repair needs to be done
Does homeowners insurance cover raccoon removal?
Some homeowners insurance policies cover Raccoon removal and damage while some don’t. To know if your insurer offers such or not, you should go through their policy, and you should find it there.
Some homeowners insurance policies only cover repair caused by large animals like bears and exclude the removal of smaller animals like Raccoon and the repairing of the damages they cause. However, a standard homeowners insurance may include the removal of Raccoon and also assist with repairing the damages caused by the animal.
For insurers whose policies cover repairs of damages caused by Raccoon, the only repairs usually incurred are those of roofing, attic, or other damaged parts of the home structure. You may be responsible for replacing or repairing personal items like electronics, clothes, and furniture damaged by raccoons.
To know where your insurer stands, take the time to read through their policy. They should spell out in unambiguous terms if their policy covers raccoon removal or not.
How do you attract a raccoon out of hiding
You can attract raccoons out of their hiding place by using bait. Thus, you can use sugary or fatty foods like watermelon, sweet corn, and fish. You can also lure them out with their kittens.
They are opportunistic eaters and love foods high in sugar or fat. You can take this to your advantage. All you have to do is place the sugary or fatty foods in places where they can easily perceive them. You can use foods like watermelon, marshmallows, sweet corn, cooked fatty meats, fish (smoked, fresh, or canned), crisp bacon, vegetables like carrot coated in sugar or honey, or wet cat foods.
Mother Raccoons are highly protective of their babies; you can take advantage of this as well. You can attract them out of their hiding by keeping their kitten close to a trap. When a mother raccoon hears the distress noise of its kittens, she’ll be forced to rush out in defense.