Raccoons in Fairfax, Alexandria and Arlington, VA

Raccoon Removal in Fairfax, Alexandria and Arlington, VA

DO YOU HAVE RACOONS IN YOUR ATTIC?

Raccoons are one of the most commonly dealt with nuisance animals in Northern Virginia and won’t hesitate to take up residence in attics, chimneys, crawl spaces, barns, etc.

The warmth and shelter offer them superior protection. If you are hearing thumping and/or what may sound like stomping, almost certainly there is a raccoon in your attic.

Once attracted, a raccoon will make their own entrance into your home to find a den. Over time, raccoons have adapted to living with humans and have learned how habitable houses are and what they provide as food sources i.e. garbage cans and dumpsters.

While in your attic, raccoons will cause substantial damage in short periods of time. They often rip open ducts, chew on electrical wiring, contaminate, tear and even destroy insulation.

Raccoons are strong animals and a mother raccoon will become very combative if she feels that her babies are in danger.

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HOW TO GET RID OF RACCOONS?

The safest method of removal is to contact a qualified professional to take care of your raccoon problem. Wildlife control specialists are trained to humanely catch and remove the troublesome raccoon from homes and attics.

Anyone working in an attic, chimney, or any den site where raccoon feces is present should use a protective respirator with HEPA filters, wear gloves, and follow safety practices to avoid accidental ingestion or inhalation of raccoon roundworm spores found in most feces. Cleaning of raccoon feces presents a safety concern and should be done using methods that prevent creating dust or contaminating living areas.

Be sure to check your local trapping laws and legal requirements as they may differ from county to county. In some locations, trapping and relocation may not be an option.

Your best option is to contact a Wildlife Control Speciailst to take care of your raccoon removal needs.

WHAT TO DO IF I SEE A RACCOON?

Just seeing a raccoon is not an indication of a problem. If, however, you see a raccoons constantly or in conjunction with nocturnal noise in you attic or crawlspace, or visible damage such as missing siding, debris, insulation, unusual odors, pets being attacked, etc, it might warrant a call to your local wildlife removal or raccoon removal company for an evaluation.

HOW DO YOU GET RID OF RACCOONS AROUND YOUR HOUSE?

Raccoons are curious but many times destructive creatures. They raid garbage cans, eat pet food(sometimes coming into homes through pet doors!) eating bird food and raiding bird feeders, damaging lawns going after beetle grubs and earthworms, entering attics and uncapped chimneys to nest and birth young just to name a few. The occasional sighting is not necessarily a problem, but constant and chronic sightings and encounters with raccoons on your property or near your family can certainly lead to an unpleasant or dangerous encounters.

In these instances, trapping and removal by a licenced wildlife control operator may be necessary. Keep in mind that most states designate raccoons as a furbearers and therefore are of a protected status. Only licensed operators may take raccoons into possession either for relocation or dispatch. Virginia requires this. Relocation of raccoons in Virginia is illegal. Other strategies for repelling or harassing raccoons may be successful in scaring them off, but this can be dependent on why and where the animal is. Mothballs as a repellent is never a good idea largely because it is a registered pesticide that is being used in ways that go against the label instructions. This can lead to toxic exposure of humans and wildlife that is detrimental and ineffective.  

The most effective method is to remove what's attracting the raccoons in the first place if possible. Water and food sources should be removed or made inaccessible(i.e. Securing trash can lids with a strong bungee cord).

There are some commercially available repellents but none are particularly effective. Motion activated lights, sprinklers and scaring devices have limited effectiveness and most “motivated” raccoons will remain undeterred . If raccoons are entering attics or chimneys, they should be removed by a professional and then all holes and weak spots should be secured with sheet metal or hardware cloth and appropriate screws or nails. After this any interior damage or clean up can be safely done.

WHAT TO DO IF THERE IS A RACCOON IN YOUR YARD?

If what's attracting the raccoon cannot be removed, than trapping or scaring is the next best solution. Remember that most states require a license to trap and transport wildlife and most states restrict or frown upon relocating wildlife. Try harassment techniques first as long as the method does not require you to directly come in contact with the animal. Raccoons can be dangerous and can carry a number of diseases that can infect humans such as Rabies.

WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON DISEASES SPREAD BY RACCOONS?

Diseases spread by raccoons in the attic or home are rabies, raccoon roundworm, giardia, and leptospirosis. Raccoons are also a host for parasites like ticks, fleas, and mites which can transmit a number of diseases as well.

HOW TO KEEP RACCOONS AWAY FROM YOUR HOME?

  • Do not feed wildlife
  • Seal garbage cans
  • Get your home inspected by a wildlife control specialist
  • Seal entry points (be sure that all wildlife is gone)
  • Get professional grade repairs done
  • Install raccoon guard
  • Install vent, ridge, or roof guards

HOW DO I GET RID OF RACCOONS IN MY ATTIC?

We don't recommend that homeowners attempt this due to the potential danger of a face to face encounter or exposure to a wild animal and that attics can by themselves be a hostile and dangerous environment. In these circumstances, we recommend that a licensed and insured company specializing in wildlife removal be contracted to do this.

The best practices for removing a raccoon from an attic are:

  1. Remove any and all wildlife through trapping, harassment, physical onsite capture, and or installation of 1 way exits.
  2. Once its confirmed that all wildlife has been removed, all current and potential entry areas should be sealed permanently with professional, animal proof materials such as steel screen and sheet metal and installed in a way that animals cannot remove or chew through the repairs. This can be very specialized and detailed due to the strong capabilities of raccoons.
  3. Clean up and restoration of damaged areas inside. You want to do this last so that all this hard work isn't subsequently compromised by a raccoon that was left in the attic or crawlspace. If there are feces present, there are a number of preventions that should be taken so that inhabitants of the home or business are not exposed to disease causing organisms that could be present in raccoon feces and urine. Any damaged wiring can now be fixed, damaged drywall and insulation etc.

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO GET RID OF A RACCOON?

Cost for removal such as trapping or harassment can vary depending on the situation but on average ranges from $350 to $500. Repairs such as sealing out areas for exclusion of wildlife can be a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Restoration and clean up from damage by raccoons such as urine and feces, chewed wires, damaged insulation etc in attics and crawlspaces can be quite costly rising well into the thousands of dollars if the damage is extensive. In some cases, homeowners insurance will cover some of this damage done by the raccoons. Contact us for a free, no-obligation quote.

HOW DO YOU PERMANENTLY GET RID OF RACCOONS?

The best method to permanently get rid of raccoons is to remove conducive conditions such as food, water and potential shelter. Make sure all vents that lead to attics and crawlspaces are securely screened with a good quality steel hardware cloth or steel screen that is at least ¼”, chimneys have a professional stainless steel caps installed,  pet doors are lockable and locked at night, Attic fans have animal guards installed, ground level decks and sheds have animal barriers installed to prevent access beneath.

WILL ANIMAL CONTROL REMOVE RACCOONS?

Your local municipal/county/city animal control will remove a raccoon under certain circumstances: If the animal is displaying unusual behaviour such as disorientation, daytime activity( raccoons are usually nocturnal or active at night), being aggressive towards humans and being unafraid of humans, or if the animal is in the living space of your home or business. They will NOT come to remove an animal from your attic, chimney, crawlspace or ones living on your property or showing up to raid garbage cans.

WHY SHOULD I ADDRESS THE PROBLEM?

Raccoons are one of the most destructive wildlife animals in the Northern Virginia area. The sooner the problem is addressed the less it is going to cost. A raccoon poses many problems to your home; They carry a number of parasites and diseases that can affect people or pets. They will search hard for food, and are fond of tipping over trash cans, raiding dumpsters, and stealing food. They will often break into a screened-in porch to get pet food.

Call your local Wildlife Removal Experts, Summit Wildlife Removal, for Raccoon Removal in Fairfax, Alexandria and Arlington, VA!

Contact us online or give us a call at 703-520-5868 when you need our services. For dog or cat issues, contact your local municipal animal control office.

 
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