Keep Unwanted Critters Away from Your Pet Door

You love it when your pets come and go through your pet doors. You know that they can find shelter when they want it and the great outdoors when they want some fresh air.

It can be a concern, however, when animals other than your own want to get into your home. Here are a few tips to keep wildlife wild and out of your home.

baby raccoon

Wildlife is fascinating, but it's best kept at a distance

  • Keep pet food and water away from your pet door—both inside and out. The smell of pet food will attract feral cats and raccoons, so feed and water your pets in the house as far as possible from the pet door.
  • If you feed wild birds and squirrels, put the feeder in a location away from your pet door. Because rodents are also attracted to the seeds and nuts and snakes are attracted to the rodents, discourage snakes by eliminating their food source.
  • Don’t give snakes a place to hide. Snakes like to settle under things. Don’t stack firewood or anything else near the house that they can crawl under to use as cover. Keep the grass cut short as snakes don’t like to be exposed.
  • Use naphthalene free snake repellent around your home. Naphthalene is hazardous to humans and animals, but there are other commercial snake repellents available.
  • Always clean up after a barbecue or backyard picnic. Raccoons are notorious garbage raiders, so keep tight lids on trash cans and fasten them to the cans with bungee cords, wire or twine.

It’s important to keep wild animals and feral cats away from your pets. According to the CDC raccoons have the highest incidence of rabies in wild animals with bats and skunks second and third. You can vaccinate your pets for the rabies virus, but you don’t want to take a chance of attracting these animals to your home.

Have you tried any repellents for snakes or skunks or raccoons? How did they work?

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