In addition to being smart, raccoons are also incredibly cute, with little humanoid paws and bandit masks. But the reality is that they can wreak havoc in your garden and home.
Raccoons feast on fruits, vegetables, and nuts—and they’ll help themselves to the ones in your garden. Pet food, bird seed, and garbage are also on the menu, and raccoons are not stymied in the least by the lid on your trash can or bird seed bin. When seeking shelter from predators and bad weather, they may decide your attic, chimney, or garage is a nice place to live.
The best strategy is a defensive one. Secure garbage can lids and other food containers with bungee cords or locks. Keep raccoons out of your house and garage by pruning tree branches that overhang roofs. Block off attics, chimneys, and other spaces they could use as dens. (If they’re already in there, call a professional.) Never put out food for a raccoon, as it can lead to a population explosion (more food often equals more babies).