Rabid Raccoon? Who You Gonna Call?

Recently a motorist in my neighborhood saw a raccoon standing in the roadway, foaming at the mouth and growling at cars. Raccoons are know carriers of rabies so the man called police, who referred him to animal control, who passed him to public health, who sent him to natural resources, which told him, “Shoot it if it’s on your property.”

Seems like you’re on your own if you see a rabid raccoon in your neighborhood. Shooting a dangerous animal might make sense in the wilds of Wyoming, but in my crowded city neighborhood, it’s not smart, safe or legal. Police deal with wild people, not animals. Animal control focuses on cats and dogs and isn’t equipped to handle wildlife. Local wildlife centers will tell you how to capture a wounded animal so you can bring it in for treatment. This is great for baby birds, but I wouldn’t want to get that close to a sick raccoon.

Raccoons are known carriers of rabies and canine distemper. Rabies can be passed to humans and other animals. Distemper is not contagious to humans but can be transmitted to other animals.

If you come across a rabid, sick or wounded raccoon or other wild animal, it’s best to call an animal control company immediately. Wild animals are unpredictable and dangerous. Don’t put your family, children or pets at risk, call Stern Environmental.