Raccoons live in New Jersey and may be found near your home. They thrive if there is an abundance of food and available shelter. Raccoons can become a nuisance if people unknowingly supply food or shelter for them.
Raccoons can carry rabies. Rabies can be transferred to people and pets from a raccoon bite or scratch. Stay away from a raccoon that appears to be ill, is unable to stand or walk or is behaving aggressively or unusually friendly. Call 911 to report animals that are displaying these or other unusual behaviors.
If you get bit or scratched by a raccoon, wash the wound with lots of soap and water and seek immediate medical care from your health care provider or go to the emergency room. Call your local Police Department to report the attack.
Make sure that your pets are properly vaccinated against rabies and that their vaccinations are up to date.
How to keep raccoons out of your home:
- Make sure raccoons don’t have access to food in or near your home. Raccoons will eat anything and live almost anywhere, including rock piles, fireplace chimneys, hollow walls, attics or sewers.
- Don’t feed your pets outside; the food will attract raccoons as well as other pests and stray animals.
- Keep your garbage area clean and garbage containers tightly covered.
- Trim tree branches, which raccoons can use to climb into your attic or onto your roof.
- Cayenne pepper may be sprinkled around the area but make sure cats and dogs do not come in contact with the pepper as it can be an irritant to pets as well.