Raccoons and Rabies

 Do Rabies Destroy Other Animals?

The Anderson family weren’t all that concerned about seeing wildlife around their East Manatee home in a rural Parrish neighborhood. That all changed a few weeks ago when their 15-year-oldrabid_raccoon lab died of injuries that were probably inflicted by a raccoon.

Now, they said, they are worried about their 14-month-old baby, and they keep squirt guns on hand to prevent the animals from getting too close.

 Not Trying To Domesticate The Raccoon

Raccoons, a medium-sized predator native to North America, have become well-adapted to living in metropolitan areas, according to officials from the Florida Department of Fish and Wildlife, and they can get aggressive and spread diseases if they get too comfortable around people’s homes.

“Raccoons are common; we’re not getting rid of them, so we want to keep them wild,”

said Chris Anderson, a wildlife biologist with the Department of Fish and Wildlife.

“Generally, as long as they are kept out of homes and the vicinity and they aren’t cornered, they just go about their business.”

Problems tend to arise, Anderson said, when people feed raccoons or leave food out by accident because this leads the animals to lose their fear of humans and often to become more aggressive around people and pets.

Providing inviting places for raccoons to nest with their young, such as uncapped chimneys and accessible space under porches or in attics, can lead to similar problems, he said

 

CALL 866-263-WILD (9453)

 

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