Tag Archives: raccoon removal

A Day in the Life

I’m no different than any other 17 year old girl. I go to school, hang out with my friends, go to the occasional party (where there’s parent supervision of course), and I work. Of course my job isn’t typical of a 17 year old. Most of my friends work in the fast food business, or even at a mall or some kind of clothing store. Now don’t get me wrong, I love food and I love clothes, but I would never want to work there. When people ask me about my job I usually tell them I’m a personal assistant for a private contractor. It’s just easier to say that instead of explaining what I actually do. I have the coolest job ever. It’s never boring, and it gives me the most insane stories to tell!

I’ve done everything from wrestling snakes, to saving baby birds! You get so much knowledge from a job like this. You learn all about problem solving. People always have problems like raccoons stuck in their chimneys, skunks in their window well, or even snakes under their porch! Can you even imagine your surprise if you walked out onto your porch one day to see a three foot long blow snake sitting on your porch?! Well, in my experience, not very many people would be very excited about that. Now you may be thinking, what kind of 17 year old girl finds this kind of job entertaining?

I’ve never been the kind of girl who screams when she sees a spider or a snake. I was the girl who was wrestling around with the guys and looking for snakes to take home for the weekend. Now, you would never classify me as the girl who works as a part time trapper. I wear high heels at least three times a week, I never leave the house without my eyebrows filled in. But after school you can catch me crawling under porches, into attics, and even down chimneys in order to catch invasive wildlife! In fact, my favorite part of the job is helping people restore their homes to the peaceful ways they were before the animals invaded. After all, no one wants to hear bats in the attic, raccoons in the chimney, or skunks under the house! Which is why I get so much joy in helping people solve all of their wildlife problems. After all, it’s just another day in the life for me.

You Shall Not Pass

We have a psycho raccoon on our deck, and I mean absolutely bonkers.  I guess technically it’s not my house, it’s my 90 year old aunts; but I am there at least 3 days a week while her caretaker is at home.  The fact that the home belongs to my sweet, elderly aunt is the reason that I’m so concerned about this raccoon, how do I know it won’t hurt her while I or her caretaker isn’t watching?  This thing is territorial and protective, and I don’t even know what of! All I know, is that if my auntie opens the back door without checking the porch first, it could be a disaster.

So the story of this wild raccoon on the deck goes like this: about 2 weeks ago we started to notice a raccoon lingering around in the backyard.  We really didn’t think much of it at first, living in a slightly more rural area it’s not uncommon for us to see wildlife around when the sun starts to set.  What clued us in to the problem, was when it started to get closer and closer at night, until eventually it was practically at our feet with no fear.  After that it started to live under the deck and would spend the nights lounging outside the door like a cat.  We became alarmed, when we tried to go inside the house one night after a bonfire, and the raccoon hissed and growled and wouldn’t let us in the back door, and when we finally got back inside we couldn’t go out the back door again!

My concern is that my Aunt will open the back door to let some fresh air in when we have our backs turned and will let this crazy thing into the house.  Having a raccoon on the deck is bad enough, I don’t even want to get a taste of having a raccoon in the house.  I don’t know what we could do to make it leave? We walk across the deck, we’re loud, we have music playing – it just stays put!  I’m a little worried because what if it has babies under the deck and that’s why it’s so territorial? What do you do with raccoons, PLURAL? We need some help, and we need it before my aunt makes things worse.

Major Reaction

There are raccoons in the cellar of our home, and they are going to kill me.  I know I sound dramatic, but I’m not!  I have never had pets so I’ve never experienced any animal related allergies until now and they are more awful than I ever could have pictured.  It’s a mother and I’m pretty sure she has babies down there, if I can get close enough to listen at the vent I can usually here soft animal sounds coming from inside.  I think she tore the vent cover off and that’s how she got in there because I have looked around for any other entrances to the cellar and they’re all only from the inside of the house; it was completely sealed off from the outside except for that one vent.

I don’t necessarily have a problem with the raccoons in the cellar, I never go down there; truthfully if I wasn’t having major allergies because of them, I’d just let them stay until they were grown and gone before I reinstalled the vent.  The problem is that our air conditioning system is down there along with our water heater and electrical boxes and such.  Basically, these raccoons aren’t just in the cellar, they’re being blown all through my house by way of the vents.  I can’t go anywhere without my eyes puffing up and my nose running uncontrollably!  Not to mention the hives on my skin, it looks like I’ve been stung by hundreds of bees!

I tried scaring them out myself just by making loud noises from upstairs and I turned off the air system so it’s not blowing through the house, but now I’m either sweating or freezing along with slowly dying from these allergies!  I need help getting these raccoons out of the cellar and I need it fast. I’ve practically drained my pharmacy of Benadryl and Claritin D but I just lay awake at night, miserable!  They have got to go, and they have to leave YESTERDAY!  I don’t know how much longer my body can take of this before either I move out or I suffocate! PLEASE HELP!

Million Dollar Raccoon Den

My boss and I went up to Heber City, Utah to do a raccoon job. This raccoon was getting in the attic and had babies as well with it. As we drove up to the site, we saw a big raccoon mother running across the yard and shimmy its way up a wooden post of the house and into an opening of the roof. It was my first time ever seeing a raccoon actually go into a house. We then knew immediately where the problem area was and where to treat.

As we got out of the truck and walked over to the hole in the roof, we shined our flashlight into the hole and back at us were two, big, glowing eyeballs of the raccoon. If she wanted to, she easily could have attacked us, but being the protective raccoon she was, she backed into her den to guard her young babies.

Not only had she ripped out an area on the east side of the home, but also on the west side on the metal siding overhang. Note: sometimes, raccoons have more than one entrance or a secondary entrance. We could hear trumping on the metal porch soffit above our heads, so we knew exactly where she was nesting at with her young. It was a cool experience. After one week of trapping, we were able to remove the mother and young successfully.

Raccoon Deany

It was a Sunny, 90 degree day in Salt Lake City, Utah. Chris and I went to a job site that had raccoons in their chimney. It is very common for female raccoons to get into attics and chimneys with their young because the male raccoons will attack and kill their babies. That is why it is important to make sure you have chimney caps and that your roof is not damaged or has any potential holes where wild animals could get in.

These types of jobs are my favorite, but they can also be very dangerous. The owner was sick of the raccoons and wanted them out immediately. In this case, we had to snare the raccoons, drag them up and out of the chimney and put them in cages.

Chris first snared two babies out and handed them to me. I had to hold them down with my weight on the roof because they were pretty strong. As I’m trying to hold them down and get them into the cage, Chris pulled out the mother. This mother raccoon was very vicious. It was hissing, shaking, and flopping around all over the place.

Chris had her snared pretty good, but she whipped around and somehow slipped out like Houdini and got loose. We both froze in terror hoping she wouldn’t attack us but luckily she fell off the roof, making a big crashing noise in the bushes, and then ran off to another neighbor’s house.

After that horrific moment, we got the rest of the babies out and sealed off the chimney so no more raccoons could get in. The owner was very pleased and happy that they were finally out.

105 Pound Raccoon Removal Queen

Chris and I did our weekly wildlife jobs together and had to go down to Provo to remove a dead raccoon out of a chimney. This is why you buy chimney caps to avoid this type of problem.

At the time, I had never been to a job where you had to remove a dead animal. I was curious how this job would turn out (I am currently studying to be a police officer and a Crime Scene Investigator).

We arrived at the house, and the owners lead us to the basement where we immediately were invited by a dead, decaying smell up our noses. We got all of our equipment and started the project. Of course, I had to do it because Chris is this big, tall man that wouldn’t have been able to reach up into the chimney to get the raccoon out.

I am a 19 year old girl that is 105 pounds so it was quite obvious who would be the lucky winner. I had to wear a full body jumpsuit with gloves, goggles, and a facemask to ensure I was fully protected from any diseases.

Then, the fun part started. I crawled into the chimney, reached up, and grabbed a nice chunk of a slimy, maggot filled raccoon leg. I looked at it like it was the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. Chris was about to throw up and insisted I throw it in the garbage immediately and to stop playing with it.

I had absolutely no problem removing the fleshy body. I guess I have a sick, unique gift for that. I continued removing the body and we ended with a nice chimney sweep to ensure all hair, maggots, and feces were gone.

When we finished, we got up onto the roof to measure for chimney caps. When we got to the entrance of the chimney, there was a bodiless raccoon head staring at us. You could see its spine and brain from where it got decapitated.

More than likely it had gotten attacked by a male raccoon, leaving the owners with a nice welcoming stench. We took some pictures and then threw it to the ground to put in the garbage. When it hit the ground it made a splat noise. It was still a little fresh. I was very proud of myself after that job.

Raccoon Family in the Cabin

Raccoon (2)When we went cheap on our vacation, we did not plan on having to share a summer with a family of raccoons.

The economy might be improving, as reported on the news, but it has yet to get better for most of my friends and me.  So, summer months are filled with inexpensive “stay-cations.”  We avoid the theme parks, the costly water parks, and even long, gas-guzzling drives.  Instead, we do splash pads, camping at free sites, fishing at the local pond, and plenty of hikes in the mountains.  We skip the high priced tickets of the zoo and museums and opt for a day at a friend’s farm or science projects around the house.

So, when an elderly neighbor couple told us we could use their mountain cabin for several weeks, we were elated!  In return, we were going to do some repairs around the place and spruce it up for their trip up there later that summer.  It was a win-win deal for all of us.  We packed up the truck, threw in the kids’ toys and sleeping bags, and off we went!  The four of us chatted and sang and watched the beautiful mountain scenery go by as we drove deeper and deeper up the canyon and into a side canyon where the cabin sat.  This was better than a theme park, because we’d be able to enjoy it for weeks, spend lots of time with each other and fish and hike and swim to our heart’s content.  This was going to be the best family vacation ever.

Following the directions, we finally headed down the dirt and gravel road that led to the cabin.  It wasn’t a mountain resort, by any means, but it was going to be all ours for the next several weeks.  We stopped in front, the kids spilled out of the truck’s cab, and my husband couldn’t stop grinning.  I was ready already planning where we were going to set up the hammock as soon as lunch was ready.

My husband unlocked the front door and we all brought our heavy loads in, arms full of bags of food, coolers, camp chairs and other mountain living necessities.  The cabin had obviously not been occupied in a while, at least not by humans.  The bright windows illuminated the clouds of dust we stirred up, and the place smelled dank and foul.  “Ewwww!” my six year old said, plugging her nose.  I exchanged an uh-oh look with my husband.

My son, oblivious to the possible gross-ness of his surroundings, kicked open a bedroom door and stomped on in, plopping his load down on the nearest cot.  I carefully placed my load on the small table in the tiny kitchen and followed my son, a vague warning dying on my lips.  He was silent and still, staring at a large raccoon baring its teeth at him and standing in between my son and three raccoon babies.  I could tell by the look on my son’s face he thought this was the coolest moment of his nine years on earth.

The frozen moment passed and I blew into action, grabbing my son and backing quickly out of the room, slamming the door as I passed the threshold.  I then picked up my bewildered daughter and charged out the front door of the cabin back into the relative safety of the outdoors.  At least there, we were not confronted with raccoons who might feel cornered or bite or scratch us, necessitating a trip back down the mountain to the nearest hospital.

My husband figured it out quickly enough when he bravely opened up the bedroom door to see what had caused all the fuss.  We shared the cabin with a family of raccoons.  We had to re-think this whole mountain resort situation if we were to deal with raccoons in the cabin.

We discussed all the possible ways of dealing with the situation while our children threw rocks into the nearby creek.  It was imperative to get the family of raccoons out of the cabin before we could even begin to clean up the mess and start on repairs.  We certainly weren’t going to enjoy our mountain retreat until we got those raccoons out of the cabin.

Finally, we realized we should just handle the situation the same way we would handle it at home.  We wouldn’t try to remove the family of raccoons by ourselves like some bad 80’s cartoon.  I would drive back down the mountain to the nearest town with cell reception and contact our neighbors, the cabin’s owners.  I would suggest to them that they call Allstate Animal Control.  Allstate Animal Control could easily remove the family of raccoons out of the cabin, and I knew they’d also take care of some of the cleanup and repair.  Then, my family would finally be able to move into the cabin from the tent we staked, and we could get back to the business of fixing up the cabin and enjoying the heck out of our mountain vacation.  Lucky for us, our neighbors agreed and we were quickly back on track with one of the best family vacations we have ever enjoyed!

Raccoon in the Kitchen


I was a typical little girl, playing Mommy to my little doll, pretending to feed it, quiet it, and change its little diaper.  As an adult, I was so happy when child number one and number two came along, and even though I was naturally exhausted, I enjoyed my life.  So, we decided to have a third child.  But, I was shocked when the obstetrician informed us I was carrying twins.  I complained to my mother, “If I’d known that was a possibility, I never would have gotten pregnant.”  My mother, a pragmatist, said, “Hon, you always knew that was a possibility.  It is for anyone who gets pregnant.  Be happy they’re not triplets.”  Of course, she wasn’t going to be the one who would be raising them.  So, it was easy for her to take a more blasé approach to my new situation.  Rambunctious doesn’t even begin to describe my boys.  They are now two, going on eighteen year-olds at a frat house.  I can barely keep up with them, much less my older children.  The twins got into the pantry and spilled the flour on the floor so many times, despite all my efforts at discipline, that I now keep our food under lock and key.  They hardly sleep.  They don’t take naps, and I often have to put them to bed three or four times before they’ll finally stay in their room, although they’ll stay awake for hours, romping around, making messes and lots of noise.  You’d think I’d get a break, since they sleep in until 10:30 in the morning, but you forget I have two older children, both of whom get up at 6.  One night, as I blearily stumbled down the hall to the twins’ room once again, I stopped, listening.  I could hear the boys playing in their room, but I also heard some odd bumping around downstairs.  Had one of my older children developed the bad habit of late-night excursions?  I used my Mom-Ninja skills to creep down the stairs as quietly as possible, to discover exactly who was doing what before they realized I was awake and they stopped doing whatever they were doing.  Instead, I was greeted by two bright eyes peering out at me from the kitchen.  They continued to stare at me as I stifled a scream, flipped on a light, grabbed the nearest weapon (my oldest son’s nerf sword), and strode resolutely toward the raccoon in my kitchen.  It didn’t flinch.  Not when I waved the sword under its nose, not when I hush-yelled, “Get outta here!”, and not when I threw an orange at it.  Finally, as if to say, “I’m not scared of you, but I choose to leave,” it grabbed one more leftover hot dog that my daughter had left out on her plate on the counter, hopped down, and sauntered out the doggie door.  On top of all my other daily worries and duties, I now had to raccoon-proof my house.  I had no way of knowing how to do it, and even if I was successful at putting out some trap, who was to say that my dog or, worse yet, the twins, wouldn’t get caught in the raccoon trap?  No, I determined there was no way I was going to add this responsibility to my list of daily chores.  The only thing on my to-do list for the morning, before the twins woke up, was to call United Animal Control to get rid of the raccoon.  The late-night drama is bad enough with the twins, no need to add wild animals into the mix.

Raccoon Removal

My son didn’t figure raccoon removal into his business plan, poor thing, but it’s turned into a valuable business lesson for him.

When my son was ten years old, he decided he wanted to do something every year to make extra money.  He’s a saver, not a spender, and I have the feeling he’s going to be a great business man some day.  So, when he came to me five years ago and told me his business plan, my husband and I had to support it.  His big plan was to “lease” our garden plot from us in June, plant pumpkin seeds, grow pumpkins as big as he could, and then sell them in the fall for the Halloween and Thanksgiving seasons.  My husband and I quizzed him about all the ins-and-outs of his plan, but he really had thought of just about everything.  I had been a lazy gardener that first year, so I had no problem leasing the garden plot to him in exchange for extra chores.  He purchased pumpkin seeds using some of the money he’d earned mowing lawns in the spring.  He researched the best pumpkin growing practices for our area.  And, he spent the summer and early fall helping his cash crop to grow.

I hate to admit it, but my husband and I were surprised at how vigilant he was.  He stuck it out, worked really hard, and had a fairly good-sized crop by the beginning of October.   He worked up some fliers, handed them out to his classmates in school, stuck them on neighbor’s doors, and sold every last pumpkin that year.  He saved every dime from that first crop, with the exception of purchasing better seeds for the following year.

Every year since then, he’s made a profit, which he’s saved, and he’s developed quite a reputation.  He doesn’t even talk about buying a car when he turns sixteen, or spend it on hobbies, but he’s currently talking about his next business venture.  He hasn’t settled on one, yet, but this year’s fight with the raccoons have pushed him away from pumpkins and towards something a little less troublesome.

His pumpkin patch has gotten bigger over the years as we’ve dedicated more and  more yard space to his business.  He walked out to work in it the other day and found, to his dismay, some animal had invaded and eaten some of his pumpkins.  He set up watch one night, and discovered he needed to remove raccoons from his pumpkin patch.

There were two raccoons, who waddled and scuttled furtively into the patch, then used their sharp claws and teeth to rip into a couple of pumpkins.  They kept scooping pumpkin flesh up into their mouths until my son ran them off.

Since then, he’s tried several raccoon removal techniques, but nothing’s worked for him.  He’s finally come to the conclusion that he needs to get a raccoon removal service.  Fortunately, one call to Allstate Animal Control got an expert out to his patch, who removed the raccoons.  Also, fortunately, the cost was much lower than my son had expected.  He’s decided raccoon removal is just part of the cost of doing business.  He’s also decided that maybe it’s time to try growing Christmas trees on the plot, instead of pumpkins.

Raccoon Control

I knew I had a raccoon control problem, but it wasn’t until I actually witnessed my cat versus the raccoon that I finally decided to do something about it.

My house has felt pretty empty since my husband passed away three years ago.  My children all live out of state with their families, and although they all visit at least once a year, I miss them terribly.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m not one of those old fogies that sits around in her house all day, dusting a dustless house and watching reruns of “Matlock” and “Murder, She Wrote”.  I’m on a bowling team, I volunteer at an elementary school teaching children how to read, I swim laps every day, and I run the neighborhood watch program.  As busy as I am, there are times when the house seems pretty empty.  So, I have become somewhat of a cliché, the old woman with a house full of cats.  Okay, it’s only two cats, but, still.

My cats are both indoor and outdoor cats.  I let them spend a few hours outside each day and then call them in at night.  Their food bowls are outside on my back deck, and I enjoy watching them play and hunt and climb.  A few weeks ago, I started noticing that their food bowls got empty faster than normal.  Instead of refilling their food dishes once every couple of days, I was replenishing their food supply twice a day.  At first, I thought we had feral cats in the neighborhood that were taking advantage of free food.  Then, I realized I had a raccoon control problem.

Raccoons carry all kinds of diseases that can infect my cats, so I was really worried.  Then, one day, in broad daylight, I saw a raccoon on my deck, about three feet from one of my cats and her food dish.  I was sure it was a rabid raccoon, and called a raccoon control service immediately.  But, after watching it interact with my cat, I realized it probably wasn’t rabid, it was just hungry.

My cat would jab and bat its head anytime the raccoon got near its food dish, but the raccoon just dodged the blows and scooped up tiny handfuls.  It would then retreat back down a couple of steps, eat the cat food, and go back for more, dodging even more cat jabs.  If it was rabid, it would have attacked my cat, but instead it avoided the swipes my cat took at its head and helped itself to the cat food.  No wonder I was buying more cat food than normal these days.  I was feeding at least one raccoon in addition to my two pets, and there were probably more raccoons that came under cover of darkness.

So, when the man arrived from the raccoon control company, I told him what was going on and let him trap the raccoon.  He even set out a couple of other traps, in case there were more in the area.  While I was fairly certain my cats weren’t going to get rabies, I wanted to make sure they wouldn’t get roundworm or any of the other nasty diseases raccoons carry.  Now, I could go off to bowling practice reassured that my cats would be much safer now that I’d handled the raccoon control problem.