The infectious diseases carried by raccoons can affect pets as well as humans. If you have young children at home, they are also at a high risk because they usually play outdoors and on the ground where they can be in direct contact with raccoon urine and feces. Raccoons frequently defecate and urinate in the same place and generate piles of feces called raccoon latrines. Raccoon latrine locations include tree bases, stumps, garages, under decks and in attics.
Diseases spread by Raccoons:
Raccoon Roundworm: Raccoons can excrete roundworm eggs through their droppings. These eggs are very light and can become airborne. Humans can easily inhale these eggs and become infected. After the eggs are swallowed they hatch into larvae that move to different parts of the body and can cause serious illness within a week. Raccoon roundworm is very dangerous and can be fatal if it is left untreated. It can affect the central nervous system, and can eventually impair important organs, including the brain. Severe consequences of roundworm disease can result in blindness or coma.
- Loss of muscle control
- Lack of coordination
- Loss of vision
Giardiasis is an infection that can be transmitted by many animals, including raccoons. Raccoons can carry this organism in their feces and can contaminate water, soil and any surface that Giardiamay contacts. Humans become infected by ingesting the droppings.
Symptoms of Giardiasis
- abdominal cramps
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that raccoons can spread through their urine and droppings. This infection can be contracted by both humans and animals. If you have an open cut or wound and you have come in direct contact with raccoon urine or other secretions, you may contract the disease.
The symptoms of Leptospirosis include:
- Nauseas and vomiting
- Severe head and muscle aches
- High fever
- Kidney and liver failure.
Raccoon dropping my contain salmonella bacteria. Humans can contract this infection through incidental ingestion by unintentionally transferring the microorganisms from the hands to the mouth. These bacteria can stay dormant in a dry environment for a long time, although it can become active through favorable conditions.
Salmonella poisoning can lead to these health problems:
- High fever
- Severe diarrhea
- Abdominal pain
Rabies is a viral disease which can be carried by a variety of species, including raccoons. It is very important to stay alert and vigil if you have been bitten or scratched by an infected raccoon, as the disease can be fatal.
How to identify a possible rabid raccoon
- Stumble as if they were drunk
- Froth forming at the mouth
- Aggressive behavior
- Attack inanimate objects or pets
How to avoid being infected by Raccoon dropping or urine