11 Ways to Get Rid of Raccoons Naturally & Home Made Raccoon Trap [DIY]

Raccoons are a type of omnivorous mammal that is native to North America. They are quite big in size, and they are in general, a nuisance. They can also cause massive damage to your gardens, especially if you grow vegetables.

Raccoons are nocturnal creatures, meaning they only come out at night to find food. This can make it hard to catch them and to get rid of them from your garden.

While there are lethal ways to get rid of these creatures, it is always best to use natural methods to ensure the safety of your garden as well as you. 

How to Get rid of Raccoons Naturally?

Below listed are 11 Natural Ways and Home Remedies to Gets rid of Raccoons

1. Remove or close off hiding spots

Raccoons usually come into your garden or your property because they have found a place to live in, or feed in. So it is very likely that the raccoon has found a hiding spot in your property and is living in it.

They like garbage cans, chimneys, sheds, etc. Once you close off these hiding spots, they will be discouraged to come back inside your property.

You may have to take some additional steps to make sure there is no other attraction for the raccoon. 

Required Material:

  • Planks
  • Hammer 
  • Nails 
  • Locked garbage cans
  • Wire mesh 

Step by Step Process:

  • Start by closing off any possible entry points in your house, like a hole in the fence, or any tunnel opening, etc, with a plank and nails. If the tunnel needs to pass water through it, then use some wire mesh to close it off. 
  • Replace any open garbage can with closed ones. 
  • Also close off any entry points to chimneys, or sheds, etc. 
  • Make sure that all entry points into your property have been closed off. 

Precautions:

While working with wire mesh or pins, wear protective gloves to make sure you do not cut yourself. 

2. Electric Fence

Raccoons are notorious for climbing over fences to get inside your property. If you have any tree branches hanging over the fence, that makes it even easier for them to climb over the fence.

This is where electric fences come into use. Electric shock will discourage any animal, but raccoons are intelligent animals, so if they get shocked once, it is very likely that they will not return.

This is a very effective method when paired with the previous method of closing all entry points to your property. 

Materials Required:

  • Electric fence wire
  • Fence energizer
  • Ground rod
  • Insulators

Step by Step Process:

  • First, you need to measure the perimeter of your house, i.e the length of the fence wire. You should buy a fence energizer which is able to cover your specific length of the fence. 
  • Now start by pushing the ground rod into the ground. Leave a few inches sticking up from above the ground. Attach your ground wire to it. 
  • Attach the fence wires to the fence energizer, and now wrap the entire perimeter of your garden or property with the fence wire. Make sure to place insulators in between to hold the wire upright. 
  • Make sure that the wire is not touching itself or anything else except the insulators. 

Precautions: 

Electricity can not only hurt the raccoons, but it can also hurt you, so be very careful about the placement of the wires. Make sure that it is not accessible by a child or pets. 

3. Live Trapping

If only one or two raccoons are invading your house or property, then you can easily catch them in a live trap. However, it is always important to consider the legality of the matter.

It is not legal in many states in the USA to relocate a raccoon after catching it. If you catch a raccoon, you can kill it, or you can call animal control and hand over the animal to them.

Trapping raccoons may not be a long-term solution, but it can make sure that the raccoons don’t get a chance to destroy your harvest. 

Required Material:

  • Live trap for raccoons
  • Cat food or marshmallows 

Step by Step Process: 

  • Place the trap in an area where the raccoon is usually spotted. Do this during the evening. 
  • Place some food inside the trap. You can use marshmallows or wet cat food to attract the raccoon. 
  • Check on the trap the next day as soon as possible. 
  • You can shoot the raccoon if owning firearms is legal in your area. Otherwise, call animal control to take the raccoon away from your property. 

Precautions: 

Make sure to use the right kind of bait food, otherwise, you may accidentally catch a different animal such as opossum or a groundhog. If you find any other trapped animal, make sure to release them immediately. 

4. Use Bright Lights

Raccoons are nocturnal animals, which means they prefer the night time for their ventures. This also means that they are greatly discouraged by daylight or any other bright light.

This is why using a lot of bright light in your garden can easily drive away raccoons. This method is not failproof, because over time they can get used to the lights.

Therefore, this method is useful if you need to protect your harvest for a few days or you need a temporary solution. 

Required Material:

  • Floodlights 

Step by Step Process:

  • Set up one or two floodlights in your garden. You can use more than one if it’s a farm or a big property. 
  • Switch on the floodlights every night and keep them on till morning. 
  • Make sure to point them towards all the areas that usually have the most raccoon activity. 

Precautions: 

Floodlights can also emit a lot of heat, so make sure not to point them directly at any plant, especially sapling as it might damage them. 

5. Raccoon repellent plants

Raccoons dislike several types of plants. They are nocturnal creatures, which means they rely on their sense of smell for finding food. If they smell a plant that they really dislike, then they will be driven away from your property. One such plant is cucumber. They also dislike rose bushes, peppermint, garlic, goji berries, and several other plants. 

Required Material:

  • Cucumber saplings
  • Peppermint plants
  • Rose cuttings

Step by Step Process:

  • Plant any one or all of these plants around your property. Plant them close to the fence or wall of your garden or land.
  • Water them regularly and make sure that they are in optimum condition. 

Precautions: 

This method does not guarantee that the raccoons would go away. There is a high chance that they would still sneak in if there is a food source on your property, so always pair this method with other preventative methods to ensure that the raccoons have no chance of coming inside. 

6. Use homemade repellent

If you don’t want to plant any repellent plants, you can use a homemade repellent instead. When you spray the mixture around your property, the raccoons will be discouraged to enter because of their strong smell.

It does not work as effectively as repellent plants but it’s still quite effective as a temporary solution. 

Materials Required:

  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Garlic 
  • Dish Soap
  • Water
  • Spray Bottle

Step by Step Process:

  • Mix 1 bottle of cayenne pepper powder into one gallon of water. 
  • Blend 2 bulbs of garlic into a paste and mix the paste into the water as well. 
  • Mix 2 teaspoons of dish soap into the mixture. 
  • Transfer the mixture into a spray bottle. 
  • Spray all around your property, covering any fences, and plants that may be affected by raccoons. Make sure to spray during the evening. 
  • Repeat this process every few days.  

Precautions:

This spray can cause irritation to your skin and can burn your eyes or nose, so make sure to handle it carefully. Also, keep it away from children and pets. 

7. Cover any water sources

Raccoons love to be near water sources. In the wild, they would catch fishes from water sources, so whenever they find a water source like a pond or a swimming pool, they go searching for food in those places.

If you have a fish pond, they may even try to catch the fish to eat them. You should always cover such water sources, to make sure that raccoons don’t get attracted to your property. 

Required Material:

  • Pool cover
  • Wire Fence

Step by Step Process: 

  • If you have a swimming pool, you can cover it using a pool cover. You should buy a cover that fits your size of pool specifically. 
  • Take help from a friend and cover the pool with the pool cover every night or when it’s not in use. 
  • If you have a pond or an ornamental fish pond, then you can cover the side of the pond with a wire fence. You can also attach an electric fence to it for added protection. 

Precautions:

Raccoons may still get inside your property for other attractions. So always make sure to use another method along with this one. 

8. Close the garbage cans

Raccoons love to live in garbage cans. They are the perfect place to live and get ample food. Whether it’s your own personal garbage can or it’s a neighbor, they may be living in them only to come out at night.

So it is a good idea to check inside garbage cans when you have an increased raccoon activity on your property.

Even if you don’t find any raccoons inside the garbage cans right away, make sure to use a closed can, which cannot be opened without detaching a clasp. This would make sure that the raccoons do not have an easy entry point. 

Materials Required:

  • Closed Garbage cans

Step by Step Process:

  • Replace any open garbage can with closed ones. 
  • Close the cans properly every time you open the can to empty it or to throw garbage inside. 

Precautions: 

If the clasp on the garbage can break by any chance, make sure to replace the can immediately. 

9. Spread ammonia

Ammonia has a horrible smell. Not only is it repulsive to humans, but it is also a great raccoon repellent.

If you can get your hands on ammonia and if you can bear the smell, then this is a good solution in the short term to get rid of raccoons from your property. If you keep using it, then the raccoons will get used to it, and attack your garden or property anyway. 

Required Material:

  • Ammonia
  • Spray Bottle 
  • Water

Step by Step Process:

  • Mix one part of ammonia with one part of water. 
  • Transfer this mixture into a spray bottle.
  • Spray this mixture around your property. Don’t spray directly on any plants. 
  • Repeat this process every other day. 

Precautions: 

Pure ammonia has very strong fumes, so take eye and face protection while working with it. Also, keep it away from pets and children. 

10. Spray the urine of a predator

Coyotes, Mountain lions, and Wolves are all predators that hunt raccoons in the wild. So if raccoons smell the urine of any of them, they will not dare to come near that area. It is, of course, difficult to collect the urine of Mountain Lions or Wolves.

However, you may be able to find coyote urine online or in a nearby animal store. The smell stays around for a month (unless it rains) and will keep away the raccoons effectively. 

Materials Required:

  • Coyote Urine 
  • Spray Bottle

Step by Step Process:

  • Pour the Coyote Urine into the spray bottle.
  • Spray the urine around the areas where there is the most raccoon activity. 
  • Spray near the ground, to make the raccoons think that there is a coyote nearby. 
  • Repeat this process after a month. 

Precautions:

Coyote urine can burn your eyes and nose, so be careful while using it. You can use protective gear to protect your eyes and nose. 

11. Spray vinegar

Vinegar contains acetic acid, which has a strong smell, much like ammonia, so it will also drive away raccoons from your property.

It is as effective as a homemade spray, which means that the effect will last a few days. It is a good temporary solution to get rid of raccoons from your property.

Always make sure to use other methods along with it to make sure that the raccoons are going away. 

Materials Required:

  • White Vinegar
  • Spray Bottle

Step by Step Method:

  • Take White Vinegar in a Spray Bottle. Do not dilute. 
  • Spray the vinegar around the areas where you have seen a raccoon previously. 
  • Spray every few days to keep the smell fresh. 

Precautions: 

White Vinegar can burn your eyes and nose. Be careful while handling the vinegar. It can also damage your plants if you spray on them directly, so avoid spraying directly on plants. 

DIY Raccoon Trap : How to make a Raccoon Trap at Home

If you notice raccoons in your region, here is a simple way of making a raccoon trap at home with few tools:

1. Cut plywood according to the box size

Get a long plywood specifically treated for outdoor purposes and cut into the following sizes with the help of a handsaw:

  • For walls: Two pieces of 12 inches * 24 inches size
  • For bottom: One piece of 12 inches * 24 inches size
  • For top: One piece of 12 inches * 22 inches size
  • For back: One piece of 12 inches * 12 inches size

2. Secure two pieces of wood at the bottom to support it

Place one of your bottom plywood pieces on a flat surface and mark it ½ inches along the long sides.

Place the wood pieces of ¾ inch * ¾ inch * 22 inches size inside the marked lines.

Attach the pieces together with the help of a screwdriver and three screw pieces (one at each wood piece).

Make sure that one end of the wooden pieces is flushed with one of the shorter sides at the bottom of the trap so that the door would be able to shut itself once the raccoon enters.

3. Cut metal panels to size with an angle grinder

Wear protective gear for eyes and hands and start cutting metal panels using a metal cutting blade on an angle grinder with the following dimensions:

  • For door: One panel of 10 inches * 11 inches size
  • For trigger that would spring the trap: One panel for 9 inches * 3 inches

Make sure that you smooth the metal edges on the angle grinder before using it. Doing so will not harm the raccoon while it’s trapped.

4. Drill holes ¼ inch from a corner through each metal plate

Drill the holes slowly and apply rigorous pressure as you push the driller through metal plates.

The holes are made so that a trigger can be made for the trap when a wire is passed through them.

5. Attach the metal piece for triggering the trap to the bottom with hinges

Screw one or two sets of hinges on the bottom of the smaller metal panel and make sure the drilled corner is on the upper left or upper right corner of the panel.

Attach the hinges to the bottom so that it is 5 inches away from the rear wall.

6. Screw the top and side pieces onto your box trap

With the help of three of four screws per side, assemble the walls of the trap with a screwdriver.

Place the plywood panel for the top of your trap in a way that it is flushed with the rear wall.

7. Cut a 20 inches PVC pipe in half along its length

Cut the pipe in half using an angle grinder or a circular saw. The PVC pipe will avoid the door getting stuck after being dropped.

8. Bolt the pipe halves to the walls and put the metal door between them

Place the pipe halves at the front and back of the trap in a way that its edges touch the wall.

With the help of three or four screws per pipe, assemble it with the wall pieces.

Make a door by inserting the metal door panel between the PVC pipes. Make sure that the drilled corner is at the bottom side of the door.

Experiment with the working of the door and notice if there is any movement amongst the screws. If seen, tighten them to avoid any harm and test the door again.

9. Connect the two metal plates using a gauge wire

Cut a gauge wire ranging from 8 inches to 10 inches and loop it through the hole in the triggering panel and clasp it firmly. Rune the wire to the other metal panel so that it is extended by ½ inch.

Loop the wire through the hole in the 9 inches × 3 inches in the panel, and wrap it around itself so it clasps firmly. Run the wire through the hole in the bottom of the door so it extends out by 1⁄2 inch.

Hurray! Your homemade raccoon trap is ready for use.

How to trap a Raccoon?

Raccoons seem like cute creatures but they can create havoc in search of food, carry infectious diseases such as rabies and transmit them to you or other animals. Therefore, it is important to capture a raccoon as soon as they start creating problems.

To catch a raccoon is a pesky task. But with patience and having the right knowledge of how to trap a raccoon, you can succeed in your mission with ease.

How to Catch a Raccoon in a Live Trap: Step by Step Guide

1. Get a Raccoon Trap

Since raccoon is a large animal, large or extra-large sized traps that are around 33 to 44 inches are best suitable.

There are two types of door in a trap, as mentioned below:

  • One Doors ensures higher security as there would be only one way available for the animal to get out.
  • Two Doors ensures higher trapping rate as there would be multiple doors through which raccoon can enter the trap.

The different types of Raccoon Traps available in the market are:

  • Live Cage Traps is one of the most used traps as they are easy to set-up and use.
    The raccoon is lured in to the large metal cages by placing food inside the cage. Once raccoon enters the trip pan placed at the rear of the cage, the cage door is shut automatically.
  • Paw Hold Traps is usually used by fur trappers as this trap does not let the raccoon escape until the trapper comes by clamping down its paw.
  • Grip Traps are not animal – friendly as it results in the unfortunate death of the animal. It is placed near the space or hole leading to an attic and as soon as the raccoon steps over it, it chokes it resulting in immediate death.

2. Find the appropriate location

Place the trap on a flat surface where the raccoon has either done any damage or is seen often such as terrace, fence, woodpiles, mulch beds and lofts.

3. Bait the Raccoon

Place some bait, i.e., food that attracts raccoons, at the back of the cage so that it has to get inside the cage completely, ensuring zero chances of harm and escape. Make sure that the bait is secured so that the raccoon is not able to knock over the bait and escape.

Raccoons are attracted to sweets, peanuts, bread and especially cat food and dog food.

4. Set up the trap

Carefully set up the trap as per its instructions and make sure that the door is facing an open position, i.e., the raccoon is able to smell the bait and enter the trap through the door.

5. Keep regular checks on the raccoon once trapped

Once the raccoon is trapped, it becomes quite scared and nervous. Therefore, it is important to keep a check on it and not trap it for a long period of time.

Before moving the trapped raccoon, cover the cage with a cloth and wear protective gear. Keep the cage at a safe distance from yourself and either drop the raccoon at least 5 miles away from your residence or hand it over to authorities.

Since raccoons come at residents in search of food or shelter, it is important that you remove any food that attracts them and ensures that possible entrances for them such as broken windows or gates are repaired as soon as possible.

Professional Advice:

Before trapping any raccoon, it is important to be aware of your area laws in order to avoid any legal complications as most states do not allow homeowners to capture it unless they have the proper license.

Also, clean your garbage bins to remove raccoon food sources and wear protective gear while handling the trapped raccoon.

Natural Methods to Prevent Raccoons

1. Build a tall fence

Raccoons can climb over smaller fences and wire fences quite easily, but if you have a solid tall fence that is at least 5 feet tall, then it becomes significantly harder for raccoons to enter the enclosed area.

Make sure that there are no tree branches hanging over the fence because then they can climb onto the branch. 

2. Harvest early

If you are worried about your crops, then along with another preventative method, consider harvesting your crops before they ripen completely.

Ripe fruits and vegetables give off a scent that raccoons can easily recognize, which will attract them to it. Raccoons are much less likely to eat unripe fruits and vegetables.

Therefore, if it is possible, harvest early and let your fruits and vegetables ripen in an enclosed and protected area. 

3. Have a pet dog

Dogs do not like raccoons, so if they find one on your property, they will chase it out.

If you have a persistent raccoon problem, letting your dog outside during the night can help you get rid of them very easily. Of course, make sure that your dog does not run away. 

4. Avoid planting things they like

Although it may not be a good idea for those who own a farm, this is a great method for home gardeners. Raccoons are omnivorous, which means they eat several plants.

If you have some type of plant that the raccoons like, they will immediately be interested in it and they will try to hunt for it. Which in turn, would cause damage to your garden, so it is better to avoid planting those plants in the first place.

They like sweet fruits like apples, peaches, plums, berries, grapes, etc. They also love corn, along with several other types of vegetables. So in short, try to avoid plants that have edible fruit. 

Top 5 Natural Raccoon Repellents Online


If you are looking for readily available repellents, below are the 5 best Natural/Organic Repellents to get rid of raccoons.

Final Words:

Raccoons are smart animals, they are well known for their intelligence. These mammals can cause damage to your garden, so it is always a good idea to prevent them from entering your garden.

You can use the many tips given above to take care of the raccoons, just make sure to always follow local laws, as they are protected by wildlife laws. If you are unsure, you can always hire a professional to trap your raccoon for you. Protect your garden today, and have happy gardening. 

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