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Home » Blog » What Happens If a Raccoon Bites You? Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention

What Happens If a Raccoon Bites You? Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention

What Happens If a Raccoon Bites

Raccoons are cute and fuzzy creatures that can be found in many parts of North America. However, they are also known to be carriers of diseases such as rabies and can cause serious injuries if they feel threatened or cornered. If you encounter a raccoon in the wild, it's important to keep a safe distance and avoid any physical contact. But what happens if a raccoon bites you?

First and foremost, it's crucial to seek medical attention immediately if you are bitten by a raccoon. Remember that raccoons carry a variety of bacteria and viruses that can be harmful to humans and pets, alongside diseases that can cause infections and illnesses. The most concerning of these is rabies, a disease that's not only viral, but it targets your central nervous system and can be fatal if left untreated. Symptoms of rabies can take weeks or even months to appear, so it's important to take action as soon as possible.

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In addition to seeking medical attention, it's important to communicate and report what happened to your local animal control center or authorities. They can help determine if the raccoon was rabid or had any other diseases, and take appropriate action to prevent further incidents. It's also important to take steps to prevent future encounters with raccoons, such as securing trash cans and removing any potential food sources from your property.

Overview of the risks associated with raccoons

Raccoons are wild animals that can carry a variety of diseases and infections that can be transmitted to humans through bites and scratches. While not all raccoons are dangerous, it is important to exercise caution when interacting with them.

A raccoon bite can result in serious health consequences, including infections such as rabies, tetanus, and bacterial infections. If bitten by a raccoon, it is important to seek medical attention immediately.

What does a raccoon bite look like? Typically, a raccoon bite will appear as a series of puncture wounds, often with surrounding swelling and redness. The bite may also bleed or ooze fluid.

In addition to the risks associated with bites, raccoons can also be carriers of other dangerous diseases, such as leptospirosis and salmonella. Always avoid contact with wild raccoons to take precautions when handling pets that may have come into contact with them.

Overall, raccoons may seem cute and normally not aggressive towards humans, but recall that they're always wild animals and can pose a serious risk to human health. By taking precautions and avoiding contact with raccoons, you can help protect yourself and your family from potential harm.

Potential Health Risks of a Raccoon Bite

Raccoon Rabies

Raccoons are wild animals, you can find them in rural areas and urban ones. They’re known to carry various diseases that can be dangerous if they feel threatened or cornered. If a raccoon bites a person's body, there are several potential health risks that should be taken seriously.


Rabies is a viral disease that affects the nervous system and can be fatal if left untreated. Being one of the common carriers of rabies in North America. If a person is bitten by a raccoon, there is a risk of contracting rabies.

Symptoms of rabies can take weeks or even months to appear. They may include fever, headache, muscle weakness, and seizures. Don’t leave the infection untreated, since it can lead to coma or death.


Salmonella is a type of bacteria that can be found in the feces of raccoons. If a person comes into contact with raccoon feces or is bitten by a raccoon, there is a risk of contracting salmonella.

Symptoms of salmonella infection may include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps. Severe cases can be the main cause of dehydration leaving you in hospitalization.


Raccoon bites can also lead to infection. Since they’re animals that have sharp claws and teeth, which can cause wounds. When untreated, the wounds can become infected and cause several and highly risked medical complications.

It is important to seek medical attention when you’re bitten by a raccoon. Since a healthcare professional can ensure your safety, and determine which and what raccoon bite treatment is necessary. Cleaning the wound, administering antibiotics and keeping track for signs of infection.

In conclusion, a raccoon bite can pose a number of potential health risks. Remember that it is important to keep your safety when dealing with raccoons, always seek medical attention if you’re bitten or scratched. By being aware of the risks and taking appropriate action, you can help protect yourself from the dangers of raccoon attacks.

What to Do After a Raccoon Bite

Raccoon bites

If you have been bitten by a raccoon, it is important to take immediate action to prevent infection and ensure proper healing of the wound. Here are the steps you should take after a raccoon bite:

Seek medical attention

The first thing you should do after a raccoon bite is to seek medical attention. Even if the wound appears minor, raccoons can carry diseases which can be transmitted from their saliva, one of these diseases is rabies. A medic or healthcare professional can give you the right information and determine if further treatment is needed.

Clean the wound

After seeking medical attention, the next step is to clean the wound thoroughly with soap and water. The next steps can help you remove dirt or bacteria, which can cause the risk of infection. If there’s bleeding, apply pressure-cleaning cloth until the bleeding stops.

Follow up with your doctor

After cleaning the wound, it is important to follow up with your doctor to ensure proper healing and to monitor for any signs of infection. If necessary may prescribe you antibiotics and have a tetanus shot, depending on the severity of the wound.

If the raccoon bite was severe, you may also need to contact animal control services to report the incident and to determine if the raccoon needs to be tested for rabies. Always recall that raccoons are wild animals and should not be approached or handled.

In summary, if you are bitten by a raccoon, seek medical attention, clean the wound, and keep following your instructions. Taking these steps can help prevent infection and ensure proper healing of the wound.

Prevention of Raccoon Bites

Raccoons are known to carry diseases, including rabies, and can be aggressive when they feel threatened. To prevent raccoon bites, it's important to take the necessary precautions.

Avoid contact with raccoons

The best way to prevent a raccoon bite is to avoid contact with raccoons altogether. This means not feeding them, not approaching them, and not attempting to handle them. As wild animals, treat raccoons as such.

Seal potential entry points to your home

Raccoons can enter homes normally through small openings, like chimneys, vents, open windows, and gaps you can find on the roofline. To prevent raccoons from entering your home, it's important to seal potential entry points. This can be done by installing mesh screens over vents and chimney openings, sealing gaps in the roofline, and securing loose shingles or siding.

Secure garbage cans

Secured Trash can

Raccoons are attracted to garbage cans and will often rummage through them in search of food. To prevent raccoons from accessing your garbage, it's important to secure your garbage cans. With bungee cords or other secure fasteners to keep the lids closed, storing garbage cans in a secure location, and not leaving garbage bags outside overnight.

By taking these simple precautions, you can greatly reduce your risk of a raccoon bite. If being bitten by a raccoon, immediately seek medical attention immediately and report the bite to your local animal control agency. It's also important to watch for symptoms of rabies or infection, such as fever, headache, muscle weakness, and difficulty breathing.


Summary of potential health risks of a raccoon bite

Raccoons are carriers of various diseases that are transmitted to humans through bites. The most common diseases transmitted by raccoons are rabies, leptospirosis, and salmonella. Known as a viral disease, rabies attacks the nervous system and can be fatal if left untreated. Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that causes flu-like symptoms, liver and kidney damage, and meningitis. Causing diarrhea, Salmonella is an infection that is caused by bacterias, with symptoms like fever, and abdominal cramps.

Steps to take to prevent raccoon bites

Preventing raccoon bites is essential to avoid the potential health risks associated with them. Here are some steps that can be taken to prevent raccoon bites:

  • Do not feed raccoons or leave food outside that can attract them to your property.
  • Keep trash cans securely closed to prevent raccoons from accessing them.
  • Seal off any potential entry points to your home to prevent raccoons from entering.
  • Keep pets vaccinated against rabies and other diseases.
  • If you encounter a raccoon, do not approach it or try to touch it, and keep a safe distance.

In conclusion, raccoon bites can pose a significant risk to human health, and it is essential to take steps to prevent them. By following the steps outlined above, individuals can reduce their risk of encountering a raccoon and minimize the potential for a bite. If a raccoon bite does occur, seek medical attention rapidly, so ensure proper treatment and prevent spread disease. If you need help to get rid of raccoons, contact us now! At Critter Stop we are ready to help, call us at (214) 234-2616 and our expert team will be there for you!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the risks associated with a raccoon bite?

Raccoons are known to carry a variety of diseases, such as rabies, that is transmitted through bites. Additionally, raccoon bites can cause infections and may require medical attention.

How should a raccoon bite be treated?

If bitten by a raccoon, it is important to clean the wound thoroughly with soap and water. Medical attention should be sought immediately, as antibiotics or a tetanus shot may be necessary.

What symptoms may indicate a raccoon bite infection?

Infection symptoms may include some swelling, redness, pus and warmth, or other drainage from the wound. Fever, chills, and swollen lymph nodes may also be present.

What is the likelihood of contracting rabies from a raccoon bite?

The likelihood of contracting rabies from a raccoon bite depends on several factors, such as the location of the bite and whether the raccoon was infected with the virus. Remember to immediately seek medical attention after a raccoon bite to receive appropriate treatment.

Are there specific concerns when bitten by a pet raccoon?

Pet raccoons may pose additional risks, as they may not have received proper vaccinations or may have been exposed to other animals that carry diseases. Seek medical attention immediately and communicate the bite to local animal control authorities.

What immediate actions should be taken if scratched by a raccoon?

If scratched by a raccoon, the wound should be cleaned thoroughly with soap and water. Medical attention should be sought if the wound is deep or if there is any concern about infection or exposure to disease.

What happens if you get bit by a raccoon?

If you get bitten by a raccoon, it's important to clean the wound immediately with soap and water to reduce the risk of infection. Seek medical attention as soon as possible because raccoons can carry rabies, a serious virus that affects the brain and is almost always fatal if not treated before symptoms appear. Your healthcare provider may recommend a series of rabies vaccinations as a precaution. Additionally, they may treat the wound to prevent other bacterial infections.

What to do if a raccoon bites you?

If a raccoon bites you, immediately wash the wound thoroughly with soap and water, apply an antiseptic to prevent infection, and seek medical attention promptly to evaluate the need for a rabies vaccination and further treatment. It's also important to report the bite to local animal control or public health departments.

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Lee Gorman
Lee Gorman
13:50 21 Nov 22
I’d give a 10 star review if I could! We had a great experience with Critter Stop. Everyone I dealt was friendly, professional, and reassuring. Phillip was very helpful and knowledgeable about the work he was doing. He walked me around the entire house to make sure I saw and understood the services he provided. He was also really nice and answered all my questions — he is exactly the type of person that should be interacting with customers.I love the fact that they will come back for up to 1 year after installation if any problems occur — this shows me they stand behind their work.The owner was great too, he personally came to my house and walked me through their offering. I recommend critter stop to anyone and everyone!
Susan Casey
Susan Casey
14:53 15 Nov 22
Critter Stop is a fantastic business! Everyone involved is extremely professional and very easy to communicate with. Chisam, the owner, did a great job of explaining the process to get the squirrels out of my attic during the initial free estimate. The exclusion crew who did all of the initial work was fabulous. The crew consisted of Phillip, Nick and Corey who arrived promptly when they said they would. They are happy, positive employees. Everyone is very polite and patient in explaining their work and answering questions. They came back several times to check the traps and finish it off with the fogging. Lester was very good about following up to schedule each trap check with me, and the office staff who took care of the billing was very efficient. Critter Stop is a well run company with honest, trustworthy employees! Thank you to all of you who worked hard to make my attic critter free and for the peace of mind that you guarantee your work. Great to know I can call them if for some reason a squirrel figures out a way to get back in!
Karen Eckholdt
Karen Eckholdt
14:54 22 Sep 22
Critter Stop has made this project easy and extremely professional from start to finish! They are very detailed and competent from start to finish and know so much about their business. They made a problem easy for us and at a reasonable cost. We would be happy to recommend this company and their owners and staff to anyone.
Aaron Echols
Aaron Echols
13:51 03 Aug 22
The guys at Critter Stop responded quickly, were very friendly, and gave us an honest estimate of what we might need. They explained why some items on other quotes were or were not necessary. They communicated well to get us scheduled, and did the work well and quickly. Great service at a fair and competitive price.
Jacob Scribner
Jacob Scribner
19:23 27 Jul 22
Brandon and his other coworker Gavin came to install insulation in my attic. I am very grateful for the hard work and professionalism. My house feels a lot better with the insulation installed. 5 star review. Cory Leach was also very nice and helpful. He came to my house to do another job and was very attentive and professional. Thank you Corey and thank you Critter Stop for helping me.The owner very polite and helpful, I’m glad I found this company to help me.
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