Main Home page of Gable's RACCOON WORLD - provides site content overview and navigation

Top 10 Raccoon Myths

MYTHS: Raccoons... FACTS:
1. Are strictly nocturnal so a raccoon out in the daytime is rabid 1. No, while they are usually more active at night, many will venture out during the day ~ particularly females foraging for food who may have a litter of babies back in the den. But respect the fact that they're a wild animal and could be rabid.
2. Don't have salivary glands 2. No, they do (that is where their saliva comes from).
3. Hibernate in the winter 3. No, they go through a period of decreased activity in the winter, which is referred to as daily Torpor.
4. Are all carriers of rabies 4. No, and the majority of them do not have rabies but those that catch it will eventually die from it like all mammals.
5. Always wash their food 5. No, it is more akin to their "feeling" their food - click here for more discussion about this.
6. Are members of the rodent family 6. No, as members of the Procyonidae family, their closest relatives are the ringtails, coatis and coatimundis.
7. Eat cats 7. No, they don't ~ usually.  Raccoons are quite capable of killing cats but normally don't attack cats unless they are threatened or rabid.
8. Don't have emotions 8. No, unless love and trust and contentment and fear and anger and loneliness are not emotions but merely instincts. (Why do so many humans insist we are the only animal that has feelings??!!)
9. Enjoy the "sport" of coon hunting 9. No, although coonhunters have told me that the raccoons enjoy the chase just as much as the dogs, or are up holed up in the tree laughing, the raccoons tell a different tale.

10. Make good pets 10. No, raccoons do not make good pets - and while some may consider this a geeneralization, it is generally true. However, there are some raccoons out there who have successfully kept humans as pets with all parties living together happy and cage-free. But for every Remo and Taz success story, there are stories of pet raccoons that get dumped into the wild when then get [surprise!] too wild to handle. So, before even considering sharing your home with a raccoon, PLEASE read my page about Raccoons as Pets, check out the links you'll find there, do in-depth research, find a vet that will treat the raccoon and check your liability insurance coverage.