Raccoons

This is a discussion on Raccoons within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I should preface this with I like raccoons, they're like little bandits. I find their antics highly amusing, however I've got an issue with one ...

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Thread: Raccoons

  1. #1
    Member Array LeChuck's Avatar
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    Raccoons

    I should preface this with I like raccoons, they're like little bandits. I find their antics highly amusing, however I've got an issue with one that appears to be either rabid or deranged.

    A little over a week ago a raccoon charged my dog as we got back from a walk, we were in the fence so it didn't get that close but it was abnormally aggressive. I called animal control, or whatever their PC term is now and reported it. They let me know after three days they captured one and that's the last I heard. I assumed the issue was over until three days ago. The first night I was out back, in the fence having a cigarette. It was probably about twelve and I heard something in one of my neighbors yard, didn't catch sight of it but it sounded to be about the size of a cat and made a God awful noise that I've never heard out of any feline. I was ready to draw my mk9 but I never saw it and it seemed to go away. I call up animal control in the morning, let them know that they did not resolve the issues. They tell me they'll look into it, pretty much blow me off. Then last night I was outside again, having a cigarette and the dog decided to come out with me. I'm out there about three minutes when I hear something in the other neighbors yard, I hear a loud sharp cry and something hits the chain link fence. I try to call my dog back but he's entered his crazy dog mindset, where he just wants to play and can't focus on anything else. He's afraid of loud noises like thunder and firecrackers and for some reason brooms, but when something seriously dangerous pops up he only wants to lick it. I can't get him under control so I draw my gun and try and see where the damn animal is, it's about halfway up the tree in my neighbors yard, a real tiny thing with a thin trunk. The angle I was at didn't give me the chance to shoot as my neighbors window was directly behind the raccoon, I didn't want to risk hurting them. By the time I moved to a different angle the stupid thing had dropped and ran out of my line of sight. So with a few things in mind (residential neighborhood, neighbors I like and don't want to kill, etc.) I have a few questions.

    What would be a good caliber gun I can carry while in my yard for a raccoon? I'm fairly confident a .22 would do the job but I only have a SA .22 revolver and a Buck Mark, neither of which are easy to conceal easily so I'll probably need a recommendation for a concealable handgun so I do not scare the crap out of my elderly neighbors. I'm afraid my MK9 and any other concealable pistols would severely over penetrate the animal and could cause some serious consequences. I've got a shitty Raven .25 that would probably work, but I only own the damn thing because I literally bought it for $10-it's fun to own something so lousy.

    If not a smaller caliber gun, are non lethal rounds (rubber bullets) legal to own without jumping through hoops? I've thought about it, and I would imagine even a rubber bullet from a 9mm would probably kill a raccoon from force alone.

    And on an even sillier note, what effect would something like bear mace have on such an animal? Would it incapacitate it enough to a point I could kill it with a stick? Or at the very least a downwardly aimed shot, eliminating the fear of over penetration into a neighbor.

    I can't use poison, as I have a dog as do one of my neighbors, I can't really risk poisoning a family pet. I'm even sure there's anything you could use. I have no experience with traps, and considering every time I've seen the thing-and it hasn't yet gotten into my yard I'm unsure of where to place it. If you have suggestions for this route I'm open, I really just want this thing gone.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    Get a cage and trap it,you go flinging rounds at a raccoon in a residential neighborhood you could end up in jail
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    Member Array LeChuck's Avatar
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    Well that was one of my questions, I was kind of hoping to get some advice on it as I have zero trapping experience. I can't see where it's gotten into my yard, or if it has yet-though the fact the tree is right up against the fence and he was literally half an inch from being in my property I'm assuming at the very least he wants to get in. How do you even trap a rabid animal? Isn't one of the main symptoms of rabies hydrophobia? An inability to drink water, and I would assume it would make eating difficult as well so I'm unsure of what food to even bait it with. Where do I place it if I don't know where it wants to hang out in my yard? I doubt a deranged animal will walk into an improperly baited cage in an improperly placed location.

    I admit, shooting the animal isn't ideal, which is why I didn't start "flinging lead" at it. However if it comes down to the thing going after my dog, myself or my girlfriend damn the legal issues. I've got two neighbors on either side of me and behind me there's a wooded area (and yeah I've looked can't see any clear indication of a habitat for a raccoon) and in the front there's a street and nothing. One of my neighbors is a couple who own three tiny dogs, they are their children. I don't think they're to concerned with a discharged firearm if it saves their pups. The other neighbor is an elderly good ole boy, I doubt he'd insist on charges being pressed. And I do believe, a rabid raccoon trying to harm you is a reasonable use for lethal force. Of course nothings for certain, but if no people are harmed I don't see any legal issues.

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    Senior Member Array dnowell's Avatar
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    The legal issue is that it's typically a relatively serious crime to discharge a firearm within city limits. If you have a concealed carry permit, you won't keep it long if you get caught shooting in the city.

    If it's really an urgent right-now problem and you don't know what to do, hire a reputable pest removal company. It's not worth it to risk a clean criminal history for a dumb racoon.

  6. #5
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    Go buy a 12x12x36 inch cage trap. Get a bottle of anise flavoring and a big marshmellow. Poke a hole in the marshmellow and add a couple of drops of anise and throw it in the very back of the trap. The marshmellow is for sight and the anise attracts coons.
    I am very willing to bet that the coon is not rabid. Coons are very mean and agressive around pets. They are not cuddily and furry and cute, they are predators just as fox, coyotes and bears are.
    I trap around 350 every year and can tell you that they are very willing to take on a dog.

  7. #6
    VIP Member Array JAT40's Avatar
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    The supply of coons can be endless, so you can be in this for the long haul. The critters are vicious, if they are out at night minding their own business I'd leave them alone. I see them as a good source of fresh meat when the time comes to survive the Obama aftermath. Trapping is best, get a sturdy Have-a-hart for coon sized animals, see trapper T's post above. They can bust out of a cheap folding box trap, sardines also work well. Once trapped drop caged coon into a large trash can filled with water. It's not worth the trouble shooting them in a urban neighborhood.
    While people are saying "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, ... and they will not escape. 1Th 5:3

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    Distinguished Member Array Guardian's Avatar
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    I'm sorry your Animal Control sucks. I've been in Animal Control for 10 Years now. They should have offered you a trap. Ask them to borrow one and put a small can of cat food in their, put it around the area you keep seeing the Raccoon. More then likely, your neighbors are leaving food out (whether cat or dog food) and it's got itself a free dinner.

    If it's out at night, that's usually a good sign. Remember that Raccoons are carriers of Rabies, not necessarily infected with the disease, but a carrier, two different things here, ensure your dog is vaccinated and your neighbors dogs also.

    Raccoons will not normally take on any animals that they do not have to unless they are sick or cornered or have young around. They are aggressive around their terroritory due to young or they think they are cornered, they do not just become aggressive with dogs for no reason, it's not in their nature. They will make an unGodly noise if you spook them or they become afraid.

    Remember, Raccoons in many States in the last year have been coming down with a form of Distemper (Feline Distemper/Canine Distemper), it's crossing bounderies to other animals, it's no longer staying within the same species and Distemper is closely associated with Rabies and shows some of the same signs. I'm not sure in your area, check with a Vet just to be sure if they have heard. I've just come back from a Convention on it and Rabies.
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  9. #8
    VIP Member Array searcher 45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guardian View Post
    I'm sorry your Animal Control sucks. I've been in Animal Control for 10 Years now. They should have offered you a trap. Ask them to borrow one and put a small can of cat food in their, put it around the area you keep seeing the Raccoon. More then likely, your neighbors are leaving food out (whether cat or dog food) and it's got itself a free dinner.

    If it's out at night, that's usually a good sign. Remember that Raccoons are carriers of Rabies, not necessarily infected with the disease, but a carrier, two different things here, ensure your dog is vaccinated and your neighbors dogs also.

    Raccoons will not normally take on any animals that they do not have to unless they are sick or cornered or have young around. They are aggressive around their terroritory due to young or they think they are cornered, they do not just become aggressive with dogs for no reason, it's not in their nature. They will make an unGodly noise if you spook them or they become afraid.

    Remember, Raccoons in many States in the last year have been coming down with a form of Distemper (Feline Distemper/Canine Distemper), it's crossing bounderies to other animals, it's no longer staying within the same species and Distemper is closely associated with Rabies and shows some of the same signs. I'm not sure in your area, check with a Vet just to be sure if they have heard. I've just come back from a Convention on it and Rabies.
    That is really good info!!!!!!!!
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    Since you live in town, forget about shooting it, unless it attacks. Your profile doesn't say where in VA, but check your area for an SPCA office. Many SPCA branches have no kill traps you can rent. Once trapped call your animal control again for pick up and disposal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by trapper T View Post
    Go buy a 12x12x36 inch cage trap. Get a bottle of anise flavoring and a big marshmellow. Poke a hole in the marshmellow and add a couple of drops of anise and throw it in the very back of the trap. The marshmellow is for sight and the anise attracts coons.
    I am very willing to bet that the coon is not rabid. Coons are very mean and agressive around pets. They are not cuddily and furry and cute, they are predators just as fox, coyotes and bears are.
    I trap around 350 every year and can tell you that they are very willing to take on a dog.
    That's very good info. Then just turn it over to animal control. Sometimes you have to do their job for them.

    I used to have several Raccoons that would come around my yard. One time my cat was laying outside cat napping on the walk way, and a curious coon started to sneak up behind the cat. :) Well the cat heard it and just casually rolled over facing the raccoon. The raccoon backed off.. didn't want any of that.
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    VIP Member Array goldshellback's Avatar
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    Don't think you can kill that coon with a stick after maceing it, you'll just tick-off the coon. Don't discharge a firearm in town either. You'll tick-off the neighbors and the police.
    "Just getting a concealed carry permit means you haven't commited a crime yet. CCP holders commit crimes." Daniel Vice, senior attorney for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, quoted on Fox & Friends, 8 Jul, 2008

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    Distinguished Member Array Rugergirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guardian View Post
    I'm sorry your Animal Control sucks. I've been in Animal Control for 10 Years now. They should have offered you a trap. Ask them to borrow one and put a small can of cat food in their, put it around the area you keep seeing the Raccoon. More then likely, your neighbors are leaving food out (whether cat or dog food) and it's got itself a free dinner.

    If it's out at night, that's usually a good sign. Remember that Raccoons are carriers of Rabies, not necessarily infected with the disease, but a carrier, two different things here, ensure your dog is vaccinated and your neighbors dogs also.

    Raccoons will not normally take on any animals that they do not have to unless they are sick or cornered or have young around. They are aggressive around their terroritory due to young or they think they are cornered, they do not just become aggressive with dogs for no reason, it's not in their nature. They will make an unGodly noise if you spook them or they become afraid.

    Remember, Raccoons in many States in the last year have been coming down with a form of Distemper (Feline Distemper/Canine Distemper), it's crossing bounderies to other animals, it's no longer staying within the same species and Distemper is closely associated with Rabies and shows some of the same signs. I'm not sure in your area, check with a Vet just to be sure if they have heard. I've just come back from a Convention on it and Rabies.
    Call Animal Control again and ask if they have live traps. If not ask where to get one, and set it up, once the critter is trapped call them and have them remove it. If the locals don't have a trap, the county might, ask.
    We have had possums in the area for quite a while, my dog has got a few, the rest have been trapped in neighbors yards and turned over to the local Animal Control for disposal at the County level.
    Coons are notorious for getting into garbage as well. Plastic trash bags or cans don't stop them, metal ones with a tight fitting lid will. If you must use plastic bags or cans, place some newspaper on top of the contents and soak with ammonia, the smell will keep them out until it evaporates.
    Disclaimer: The posts made by this member are only the members opinion, not a reflection on anyone else, nor the group, and should not be cause for anyone to get their undergarments wedged in an uncomfortable position.

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    The best advice after animal control ignores you is a live trap. They work, and makes easy pickins' of nasty coons...then it's just a 20 mile drive and let them go...works for cats, too!
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    My late father-in-law lived on a farm of about 500 acres. My wife and I would stay there for a few weeks every summer. He had a small plot close to the house for corn and other vege's they consumed in the house. Racoon's used to break down the corn stalks on a regular basis, take a few bites of the new ears and of course ruin the entire stalk. My FIL trapped them in a trap like the ones suggested on other posts. He would shoot them with a 22 rifle. He knew I always came armed so he'd always ask me to practice on them. Let me tell you, after the first time I put 5 rounds of .45 cal. into one before he stopped snarling, I got a whole new respect for how tough and viscous they can be. The only time I was able to kill one with only one shot was when I used a snubbie with +P frag. shells and a head shot. Another time we accidentally trapped one in the garage and it chewed through a wooden panel of the overhead door to get out. Don't underestimate them. They are mean and smart.

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    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    The best advice after animal control ignores you is a live trap. They work, and makes easy pickins' of nasty coons...then it's just a 20 mile drive and let them go...works for cats, too!
    Maybe release it at Animal Control after-hours?
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