How to Keep Raccoons Out of My Garbage Cans

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All sorts of raccoon spray and powder so-called repellents won’t work in keeping a raccoon from filling its belly with your garbage, so I wouldn’t waste my time or money on such products. Also, contrary to what you may have heard, different home remedies such as human hair or predator urine will do nothing to keep away a hungry raccoon.



The only method that works with keeping raccoons out of garbage cans is securing the cans. Don’t get extra confident, though. Raccoons are particularly dexterous, and are very much able to assimilate and put in practice new information. Professionals who make it their job to find new solutions that prevent raccoons from accessing our properties often find out that a system that worked just fine in the beginning becomes completely useless as a couple of years pass. Raccoons learn to overcome obstacles, and they pass the knowledge to their offspring. I bring this to your attention just to show you why putting a rock or a cinder block on the lid of the garbage can will not be such a problem for the raccoon.

So, how to properly secure the garbage can? You can place something heavy on the lid, but make sure that it’s heavy enough, as raccoons are able to push and lift objects that are heavier than their own bodyweight. The raccoons can always just tip over the garbage can, they don’t necessarily have to get in by opening the lid. Placing something heavy on the lid may also be inconvenient for you or other family members.

You could also latch the lid with bungee cords. Just make sure that the cords are tight enough. This may be a little inconvenient for you, as there’s some extra moves you have to make every time you need to open and close the garbage can. Also, there’s always the possibility that the raccoon will chew through the cord. It’s not necessarily a bad solution, don’t get me wrong, I just want you to also know all the possible cons before investing any time and energy.

Another way to keep raccoons out of your garbage can is by buying a garbage can that locks in place. In some cities, officials may already offer this type of garbage can for free. Fortunately, raccoons have not yet discovered how to use keys, so it’s hard to imagine how they could break into a quality locked garbage can. Don’t misplace the key, is the only advice I can give on this one.

The main reason why raccoons are such an urban success story is the garbage can. Being their primary food source, raccoons will always try to get to the delicious leftovers in our trash. And they’re nothing but resilient when it comes to it. If you want to be super effective, the best method to keep your garbage cans raccoon-free is by securing them in one of the ways mentioned above, and keeping them in the garage.

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