Are Raccoons Dangerous?

One only has to look at a raccoon to understand that this is one of nature's cutest animals. These small animals with white, gray and black fur, a black mask and bright shining eyes may look adorable, but behind that cute exterior is a very dangerous animal.

You may be wondering how such a small animal can be dangerous, but actually there are several things about the raccoon's nature that make it quite dangerous. Here is a look at why this animal is considered to be so dangerous.

Raccoons are Wild Animals

A raccoon is a wild animal and all wild animals are unpredictable. You can often find stories about people who have made a pet out of raccoon only to have the raccoon turn on them and attack. The fact is that wild animals face a number of dangers in the wild and any time they feel threatened they are likely to attack. Raccoons will also fight to the death to protect their young, so approaching a family of raccoons can result in serious injury.

Raccoons have sharp teeth and claws and have been known to seriously injure children, adults and even household pets like dogs and cats. A raccoon that feels it is fighting for its life or to protect it's young can inflict serious damage that can disfigure a person for life.


The Threat of Rabies

Raccoons have been associated with rabies. In fact, next to bats, raccoons tend to be infected with rabies more often than other animals in the United States. All it takes in a single bite from a raccoon and you are in for a painful series of shots to ensure that you remain safe from the disease.

In addition, a raccoon suffering from rabies has no fear of humans, which increases the dangers of this animal to you, your family, and your pets. Should a raccoon ever approach you out of the blue, your safest bet is quickly to move away and call someone trained to deal with these animals to come and remove it from your property.

Raccoons May Carry Harmful Bacteria and Pests on their Fur

Also, raccoons spend a good deal of time digging in the garbage to get their food, which can result in these animals carrying harmful bacteria on their fur. They also tend to be hosts for fleas and other pests so petting this animal could result in you becoming ill.

Raccoons Can Also Damage Your Property


In addition to the harm that raccoons can cause your person, these animals are also capable of damaging property as well. They can strew garbage all over your yard, Will get into your vegetable garden, berry bushes and fruit trees and even pet food.

Should they get under or in your home, they will relieve themselves anywhere they feel like it and may even shred up items for bedding.

So while it is perfectly okay to enjoy those cute raccoons from a distance, it is best to not approach one or encourage one to make your yard their home.