Raccoons are shy creatures. They can attack small animals but do raccoons attack humans? It is unlikely that a raccoon will come out to attack a human being.
No, raccoons do not attack humans. It is seldom that they will even come close to a human. However, raccoons are curious by nature. They can come close to you. But will most probably cause you no harm.
If they are spooked or threatened somehow, only then will they come out and attack a human being. They can either bite or scratch in their self-defense.
Will A Raccoon Attack Me?
Usually, a raccoon does not attack a person. However, if they feel threatened in any way, they can initiate an attack. This is a normal animal instinct.
A Raccoon may grunt, huff, and ‘charge’ at you so that you run away and leave them alone in their isolation. Moreover, raccoons come out at night, and it is not likely that you will come across one as the humans tend to be out more during the day.
There are two ways in which you can encounter a raccoon, and it might attack you:
- If you are out hunting and come across the resting abode of a raccoon
- If the raccoon crosses your fence and you try to attack it first. In this case, a raccoon strikes back in self-defense.
Are Raccoons Dangerous?
Raccoons generally appear friendly and calm. As they are wild animals, you should try not to approach them. Raccoons are dangerous in three cases:
- When mother raccoons are protecting their young ones
- When a Raccoon is sick or injured
- When a Raccoon is cornered.
What Do You Do If A Raccoon Attacks You?
An aggressive raccoon can attack you. What should your next course of action be? You can do little at that time, but here are several things that can be done:
- It is best to retreat and put distance between yourself and the raccoon
- You must call animal control right away.
- Do not try to kill the raccoon
- Do not try to cause harm to the raccoon
- Try scaring away the raccoon from your property
- You can also distract the raccoon by offering it some food
Has Anyone Been Killed By A Raccoon?
As per the Centre For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), only one person has been reported to die of a Raccoon attack. The cause of death was rabies transmitted from a raccoon to a human.
Generally, even if you get bitten by a raccoon, you can receive post-exposure treatment from the nearest medical center. Also, a rabid raccoon dies itself within the period of 1 to 3 days.
It is unlikely that a human will die due to a raccoon attack, but it can happen if the exposure between human settlements and raccoon habitats increases.
Do Raccoons Attack Humans At Night?
As Raccoons are nocturnal animals, they attack mainly during the night. However, they will rarely attack a human being. If the raccoons are provoked in any manner only then, they do not hesitate to attack a person.
There is only one scenario in which a raccoon attacks humans without being provoked. This happens when a raccoon is sick. If a human comes across an ill raccoon, they get attacked by it. That is why you should steer clear of a sick raccoon.
Why Would A Raccoon Attack A Person?
Raccoons neither hunt humans nor feed on them. However, they only attack them in self-defense when they feel threatened by an external presence. A raccoon attack inflicts severe injuries to a human being.
At this point, a person should seek medical care immediately. Otherwise, the body can become infected with deadly viruses that manifest their disease later on and lead to a person’s death.
Do raccoon bites hurt?
A bite by a raccoon is not considered a minor injury by medical specialists. Generally, a raccoon does not become aggressive without reason. If they attack, the strike is severe.
A raccoon can cause severe lacerations to the skin. This is because the raccoon’s teeth are adapted to its omnivorous diet during the day.
Will A Raccoon Chase You?
Raccoons do not like coming close to civilization except for obtaining food. They do not like coming in contact with people. Hence, generally, a raccoon will not initiate an attack on its own unless it is sick itself.
Raccoons are curious. Some of them will come near you just to have a closer look. The rest are shy and disappear if they come too close to humans.
Can Raccoons Kill Humans?
Raccoons are scared of human beings and their civilization. Naturally, a raccoon is cautious of people and tries its best not to come near them, let alone initiate an attack. They cause no harm to humans under normal circumstances.
Even a mother raccoon that is so protective towards its young babies will run away with its progeny rather than stand up to fight with the big humans. However, if you try cornering a raccoon, then it will bite you or scratch you to get away from you.
Are Raccoons Scared Of Humans?
Indeed, raccoons are very scared of human beings and tend to run away from them. Raccoons are shy in their nature, prefer coming out at night and minding their own business by searching for food everywhere.
Can A Human Kill A Raccoon?
Yes, a human can kill a raccoon easily but shooting them down. This is the best self-defense strategy for hunters who are hunting at night and come across wild raccoons. It is not difficult for a human to take down a raccoon.
However, care must be taken, for it is the night time and raccoons can see better at night than humans. That is why one should be armed at all times during the night to fight a raccoon away.
For the raccoons that come across the fence, it is better to just let the raccoon have its food and return. If you try shooting a raccoon and it get injured midway, there are chances that it will attack you and cause you physical harm.
Can A Human Fight A Raccoon?
Yes, a human can fight a raccoon but it is difficult to escape a raccoon bite or the scratches inflicted by a raccoon. Even though humans are capable of escaping the raccoon attack, there is no guarantee that they will come out unscathed.
Raccoons generally do not like to attack humans as they gain nothing from it. Raccoons do not feed on humans, nor do they occupy their territory. However, if any animal is provoked, it will attack whatever is in its front.
That is why, even if a wild raccoon attacks you, you must immediately seek medical care and get treatment for rabies. Raccoon’s lacerations are stingy and leave permanent marks. Also, there are chances that you might get infected with the rabies virus.
So you must go and receive proper medical attention and keep out of the way of raccoons for the future. You must never corner a raccoon for adventure and fun. The odds never result in your favor.
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention- CDC
- The Humane Society– USA