Raccoon Repellent – How to Raccoon-Proof a Trash Can



So you are feeling good doing your last chore for the night by putting out the trash. The next morning you are ready to start the day fresh only to find garbage littering your lawn like a party gone wild. Yep, the neighborhood raccoon must have paid you a visit last night. Why does this always happen, you think? Well, it’s probably because your trash looked like an easy-access meal and smelled like an all-you-can-eat buffet. You are not alone; many people have stories of finding raccoons in trash bins, raccoons in trash bags and even raccoons in trash dumpsters!

Raccoons are attracted to trash because of the odors and the ease of access to the trash. So how do you stop this from occurring? Raccoon-proof your trash can! There are several easy ways you can create a new raccoon-proof trash can, as described below.

How to Raccoon-Proof a Trash Can

1. Make the trash smell less appealing or cover up the smell entirely. You can do this by lacing the trash bag or trash can itself with moth balls, spraying down the inside with Lysol or adding drops of hot pepper sauce. The idea is to use a strong-smelling raccoon repellent because raccoons do not like strong smells or tastes.

2. Another way to create a raccoon-proof trash can is to make it extremely hard for the critter to gain access to it in the first place. If you live in a house with a garage, consider keeping the trash locked up until the day of trash collection.

3. Consider buying a can featuring locked lids that can only be opened by unhinging the latches in a certain way.

raccoon repellent - raccoon-proof trash can

Keep raccoons out of trash with a raccoon-proof trash can. (Photo credit: Terri Heisele)

4. Tie down the lid with bungee cords or strong string. Be sure to use a thick cord and keep an eye on it for replacement, as raccoons are known to chew right through them to gain access.

5. Finally, if you can’t seem to keep the trash can secure or the stench under control, consider protecting the trash can itself by building a little gate or enclosure to put the trash inside. You can also create a raccoon pail where the trash bin is hanging a few feet above the ground, making it hard for the raccoon to get to the top.

Ultimately, with one of the above mentioned methods or a combination of them, you will be able to successfully raccoon-proof your trash and keep those nocturnal pests off your land and scavenging elsewhere for their next meal.

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