There is a lot known about the animal kingdom. There is also a lot that isn’t known about the animal kingdom. Despite this, people push on and trudge through science and discovery every day to uncover new and exciting things about these creatures of the wild.
One such interesting creature is the raccoon. There is no denying that he can be a vicious and fierce creature with his razor-sharp claws and razor blade-like talons, but what about his appetite?
Can raccoons eat chocolate? No, This is because chocolate contains certain chemicals that are considered toxic to the raccoon. Raccoons can’t digest the chemicals in chocolate and it leads to severe reactions like nausea and vomiting. In the worst-case scenarios, it can even lead to death.
Yes, the raccoon will be more than willing to indulge in chocolate. As will the skunk. However, this doesn’t mean that it will do either of them any favors. In fact, it is something that might eventually lead to death for both species.
[Related Article: Raccoon Domestication: [Good Idea?]
Properly Feeding Raccoons
Raccoons are not all bad creatures. Sure, they can sometimes be havoc on the yard, but that doesn’t mean they are always a nuisance. In fact, they can deter other unwanted creatures and since they’ll pretty much eat anything, they’ll keep your yard trash-free.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that most people lingering in their yards. This doesn’t mean that you’ll want to be cruel to them either. If you have a raccoon lingering in the yard the best thing to do might be to feed it.
You’d be surprised at just how fun raccoons are to watch. Watching them eat and play can be a real joy for many. Their cute little faces coupled with their perky attitudes will cheer you right up.
And the truth of the matter is that there just afraid of humans. This doesn’t mean they can’t be dangerous or don’t pose dangers given the right circumstances because that’s not the case at all.
This is just to say that they are generally more afraid of you than you are of them. All that being said, there is a wrong way and a right way to feed raccoons outside the home.
Step 1 – Preparing The Yard
Raccoons are what you would call nocturnal animals, thus meaning you are going to have to wait until dark to spot one. They sleep for most of the day and only venture out at night to find food and such.
This also means that you’ll want to avoid lighting up your yard too much. These little critters aren’t particularly fond of bright lighting. Noise will also need to be kept to a minimum, as this is something that will scare them away.
Once you have these conditions met, you’ll be ready to start leaving tasty little treats.
Step 2 – Leaving Tasty Treats
Feeding a raccoon will be easier than you ever imagined since they’ll pretty much eat anything. In fact, you’ve probably got some old dog food lying around from Fido that they would just enjoy.
Maybe some table scraps for that night’s dinner? Whatever it is, the raccoon will eat it without question. Just make sure that it doesn’t contain chocolate, as this can be toxic to the little guys. It doesn’t even hurt to leave a dish of water nearby, as raccoons like water with their food as well.
All that being said, if you really want to do the raccoon a favor, you could leave some of his favorites. Raccoon’s favorites include peanut butter, grapes, cornbread, dog food, and cat chow. Apples and bananas can also be two preferred options if you happen to have these around the home.
Step 3 – Hurry Up And Wait
It likely won’t be too long before you see the raccoon show up and start feasting. They’ll usually show up right at the edge of darkness with their masked faces and attack the food without question.
If you place it on plates and cut it into bits, it’ll make it much easier for them. Think about if you were going to feed your dog. However, they’ll be much more entertaining to watch feast than Fido because they like to stand on their back legs and hold the food in their front paws.
Some will even fight as they pick through the food, trying to steal bits away from each other. It is really entertaining and you’ll understand why so many people enjoy watching these creatures feast.
Just keep in mind that once you feed them, they’ll likely show back up looking for another handout. The more you make this a consistent thing, the more they’ll show back up. They might even bring more backup along with them.
Raccoons And Pets
A lot of people with other pets oftentimes find themselves concerned about raccoons lingering around their yards. Well, you are right to be concerned because raccoons can pose threats to your animals.
It’s not so as much that they’ll attack them, although they will when they are sick or infected with rabies, it is more of their poop and diseases that they carry. Raccoons usually like to choose one area to use the restroom in, thus building a latrine of pee and feces.
Their feces looks similar to that of dogs, but it can be riddled with all types of diseases. Raccoon poop can everything from leptospirosis to roundworm and giardia. These are all conditions that you do not want your pets exposed to.
[Related Article: Do Raccoons Hibernate?]
The raccoon, somewhat of a simple creature at heart, but complex in nature can be truly entertaining and exciting to watch. This is especially true when it comes to feeding. Raccoons like to stand on their hind legs and use their paws to feed themselves.
It can be quite a sight if you’ve never experienced anything like it. Just remember to be careful with the chocolates and other sweets.