Raccoons are a common sight in many urban areas, including London, Ontario. These intelligent and adaptable creatures can sometimes find their way into our yards and even our homes. While most raccoons are harmless and go about their business without causing any trouble, encountering a sick raccoon can be a cause for concern. If you happen to come across a sick raccoon in your yard in London, it's important to know how to handle the situation safely and responsibly.
Identifying a Sick Raccoon:
Before we delve into the steps you should take if you spot a sick raccoon, let's first look at some common signs that indicate an animal might be unwell:
1) Disoriented or staggering movement: A sick raccoon may display unusual behavior, such as stumbling, walking in circles, or seeming confused.
2)Aggressive or unusually docile behaviour: Raccoons are typically cautious around humans. However, a sick raccoon might exhibit uncharacteristic aggression or appear overly calm and lethargic.
3)Visible signs of injury or illness: Look for physical signs like wounds, excessive discharge from the eyes or nose, matted fur, or visible parasites.
4)Abnormal vocalizations: Raccoons usually make chattering or growling sounds. If you hear strange or abnormal noises, it could be a sign of distress.
The most common sicknesses in Raccoons are Rabies and Distemper:
Rabies is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system of mammals, including humans. It is caused by the rabies virus, which belongs to the Rhabdoviridae family. Raccoons are one of the primary wildlife species known to carry and transmit the rabies virus. Infected raccoons may exhibit unusual behaviors such as aggression, disorientation, excessive drooling, and difficulty walking or moving. Rabies is typically transmitted through the bite or scratch of an infected animal and can be fatal if not treated promptly. It is important to avoid contact with raccoons or any other potentially rabid animals and to seek medical attention if you suspect exposure.
Distemper, on the other hand, is a viral disease caused by the canine distemper virus (CDV), which belongs to the Paramyxoviridae family. While primarily affecting dogs, distemper can also affect various wildlife species, including raccoons. Raccoons infected with distemper may display symptoms such as respiratory issues, nasal and ocular discharge, fever, lethargy, loss of appetite, and neurological signs such as tremors, seizures, and paralysis. The disease is highly contagious and can be transmitted through direct contact with infected animals or their bodily fluids. Distemper can be serious and potentially fatal for raccoons, and there is no specific treatment available. Vaccination is a preventive measure that can help protect domestic dogs from distemper.
Both rabies and distemper are significant diseases that can impact raccoon populations. If you encounter raccoons or suspect they may be infected, it is best to contact local animal control authorities or wildlife professionals for assistance and guidance.
Steps to Take:
If you spot a sick raccoon in your yard in London, it's important to prioritize your safety and the well-being of the animal. Follow these steps to handle the situation responsibly:
1)Keep your distance: Never attempt to approach or handle a sick raccoon directly. Keep a safe distance and do not allow children or pets near the animal.
2)Secure your surroundings: Ensure that your yard is secure and there are no easy access points for raccoons to enter your property or home.
3)Contact the City: Reach out to a local animal control service that specializes in the humane removal and handling of wildlife. London Ontario offers free services to remove sick or injured raccoons from yards. Visit https://london.ca/living-london/community-services/animal-pet-services/animal-care-control for more information or call them at 519-685-1330.
4)Provide information: When contacting the wildlife control service, provide them with accurate details about the raccoon's behavior and appearance. This information will help them assess the situation and respond appropriately.They will guide you on the best course of action based on the information you provide. They may advise you to keep a safe distance and wait for their arrival, or they may provide you with specific instructions for containment until they can take over.
5)Stay vigilant: While waiting for the professionals to arrive, continue to monitor the raccoon from a safe distance. Avoid leaving any food or water out that could attract the animal further.
By following these steps, you can ensure the safety of both yourself and the sick raccoon, while also preventing any potential risks associated with an unwell wildlife presence in your yard.
Getting Professional Help
Integrity Wildlife Control is a reputable wildlife control service operating in the city of London, Ontario. We help home owners and businesses that are in distress due to wildlife that have taken residency in building. The city provides removal of sick animals in the yard, but once a raccoon has entered your building it then becomes the job for professionals like Integrity Wildlife Control.
If you have a raccoon inside your property give us a call at 289-272-9453 or Get a Quote. We will complete a thorough inspection, including looking for babies. We will then provide a written treatment plan for the cost of the humane removal of raccoons, repairs that need to be performed due to the damage, feces cleaning and sanitation, and raccoon prevention.