Signs of raccoons terrorizing your home — Torre ‘s student essay

Signs of Raccoons Terrorizing Your Home

I chose the topic of “signs of raccoons terrorizing your home” because I have had quite a few experiences with ornery creatures. I live on a small acreage in Thornton Colorado which has been the home to many animals over the years: foxes, owls, hawks, skunks, squirrels, rabbits, coyotes, and raccoons. I also have a cat, who loves pillaging the homes of the rabbits and squirrels and anything tiny she can torture before leaving it on our front porch as proof of her great work protecting our home from the menaces. It was on one of these occasions that a family of baby raccoons found the remains of the dead bunny on our porch and began feasting. 

I remember watching them from our window, they were quite adorable. They had tiny little hands, beady black eyes, and fluffy hair that also looked rough at the same time. However, there was something about that them bothered me; how little they cared that humans were nearby. I was even able to walk outside and they barely budged. They hissed some, but they did not move. I returned to the safety of my home but watched as they eventually scampered across my yard, sniffing trees and perking at the noises of the night.

There was another night that I was at my friend’s house and a much larger family of raccoons started pillaging the trashcans for food. They were very noisy, and while they spooked more than the baby raccoons at my house, they still were unbothered by the humans peering down at them from the window above. 


Raccoon in the forest

So, what are the signs that raccoons are terrorizing your home? From my experiences, if they are, you know from the noise. But I wanted to research the topic more. What I found shocked me a bit. Apparently, it is common for raccoons to sneak into attics and live in your house. According to the website of “Arrow Exterminator”, the signs consist of “scratch marks and droppings left at the base of trees or woodpiles are also strong signs of raccoon activity. If these signs are undetected, look out for toppled garbage cans, trash-strewn across your yard, low growls, and shuffling noises as raccoons run along your roof or inside your walls.” From personal experience, raccoons are very food-driven scavengers. 


If you are worried about attracting them, I would avoid leaving food out in their reach. Maybe even put safety locks on your trash cans to keep them from getting inside. If you have a cat who likes bringing your prizes, make sure you are cleaning that mess up as soon as possible. However, let us see what the experts have to say. What I found on the “Arrow Exterminators” website was a multitude of precautions, including covering possible house entry points with metal, sprinkler systems, flashing lights, securing trash cans, strong smells, and even electronic fences. My best suggestion if you have a raccoon infestation is to talk to the experts and remember, no matter how cute raccoons look, they are as mean as the devil. 

Author: Torre Propst

University of Colorado, Denver

Student Scholarships

Every year Thrive Pest Control hosts an essay contest and the reward is a 1-year scholarship at a 4-year university in the United States. This blog post is one of those scholarships.