Raccoons are very intelligent mammals that have excellent memory, dexterity, and drive. When they want something, they work hard and smart to get it! And often times, what they want is not good for us homeowners. Raccoons love to take shelter inside residential homes; in places like the attic, crawl space, garage, and patio. Although highly damaging and inconvenient, at least they do this for good reason: to breed and raise their young during the colder seasons. But a good excuse does not excuse the mess and damage they leave behind; not to mention the potential diseases and infections they can pass along to humans and pets.
For this reason, we do not want raccoons, or any wild animals, inside our homes. But in order to prevent or manage raccoon problems, you must learn how raccoons gain entry into a house. Continue reading to learn how raccoons find their way into our homes at night, and how to get rid of them!
Raccoons in the Attic
One of the most common and favored spots for raccoons are attics. Not only are they dark and warm, their entry points are high off the ground and away from predators. This is an ideal place for a raccoon to breed and raise their pups through the winter. It gives them a safe and warm place away from inclement weather and more. But how are they getting inside these attics you ask? Here’s how: their paws!
Raccoons have very dexterous, human-like paws that allow them to grasp and manipulate objects. They use this ability to pry their way into attics by ripping away roof shingles and prying open weakened wood boards. Roof top areas near the gutter is a common place for raccoons to look for entry points into a house. They have been known to tear off metal flashings on the edge of roofs to expose openings beneath shingles and plywood. They are also known to scope out vulnerable or weak areas of a home they can easily pry open to get inside.
They make their way into the attic and begin ripping down insulation to make nests. They can chew through electrical wiring, soil attic insulation, and create a huge, hazardous mess right inside a family’s home. When this happens, it is time to call a licensed raccoon control contractor for safe and humane wildlife extraction. They can remove raccoons using non-lethal methods, and seal up entry points to prevent raccoons from coming back.