Do squirrels bite?

The squirrel is a common wild animal that is found worldwide. Sometimes they'll interact with humans. Sometimes the question comes up do squirrels bite? Yes, they do, but getting bitten by a squirrel is pretty rare. Since squirrels live close to humans, people tend to consider them as a domesticated animal. Squirrels are wild animals and prefer to live freely in their natural habitats.

Where do squirrels live?


Squirrels live in various places and climates. You'll mostly find tree and flying squirrels anywhere there are trees and wooded areas. Ground squirrels as their name suggest, live underground or inbetween rocky areas. Tree squirrels are going to be the most common type of squirrel and can be seen anywhere. These furry little creatures wander around our neighborhoods.  Squirrels live among us and you'll find them scampering just about everywhere.

How serious is a squirrel bite?


Squirrels have four sharp incisors that are special for opening nuts and chewing tree bark. They can deliver a painful bite and cause a considerable wound to a victim.

People consider these furry animals as harmless little creatures. This affectionate feeling is the reason people often feed squirrels and find it very interesting to interact with them. Hand feeding these wild animals can be a bad idea. If the squirrel that isn't already used to human interaction, if spooked, it is in their nature to bite in order to defend itself.

Squirrels can't clearly see things that are close to their eyes or at the tip of their nose. This lack of up close vision can be another reason why people get bitten by squirrels accidentally when trying to feed them.

Squirrels can also carry diseases such as rabies, which has the potential of transferring to humans if bitten.  See more on squirrel diseases here.

Squirrel bite diseases

Small mammals such as squirrels may carry diseases such as rabies. It is very uncommon, but why take a risk? The chances of a squirrel transmitting a disease that it may be carrying is very low.  If you find yourself getting bitten by a squirrel do seek medical attention.

For more info on squirrel diseases see our page, click here to learn more on diseases a squirrel may carry.

Squirrel bite treatments

It is better to follow the necessary precautions when you are bitten by a squirrel.

First, assess the wound and wash it thoroughly with soap and apply an antibiotic ointment if it isn't severe. If the wound is severe, you may require medical attention and stiches.

Second seek medical attention just to be sure that the squirrel did not transfer a disease to you through the bite.

Wild animals are harmless if you give them their space and let them live as they are. Unlike cats and dogs who live with you, wild animals like squirrels prefer to be free. They will remain harmless unless you try to corner them or try to catch them. If you attempt to pick on a squirrel, you may end up having a bad day. Be smart and avoid attempting to break the trust between you and the wild animals. Enjoy the wilderness with your eyes, not your hands.