What Are Some Smells That Raccoons Hate?A raccoon's sense of smell is not its most sensitive, but it does rely on its nose to help lead it to sources of food. Certain smells can irritate a raccoon's nose and help to keep it away from your property. Here are some scents that you might try as homemade raccoon deterrents:
- Epsom Salt: Epsom salt consists of a mineral compound called magnesium sulphate sold in crystal form. It is an extremely useful chemical that has multiple applications for homes and gardens. It has been shown to be more effective as a raccoon deterrent than some other scents, and it also doubles as a good fertilizer. When added to the lawn, it breaks down into its component chemicals of sulphur and magnesium, both of which are nutrients that help plants grow greener, healthier, and more productive.
- Cayenne Pepper: Like other hot peppers, cayenne pepper contains a naturally occurring chemical called capsaicin that gives it its spicy heat and sharp smell. On the Scoville scale, which is the ranking of capsaicin content in peppers, cayenne ranks approximately in the middle. Raccoons don't like it because it irritates their olfactory senses, but exposure to it doesn't harm them. Most people have cayenne pepper in their homes but perhaps not in sufficient quantities to serve as an effective deterrent.
- Onion and Pepper Solution: If you are concerned that the cayenne pepper may not be effective alone, you can create a stronger, more pungent mixture by boiling water with a mixture of pepper and onion together in equal measure. The resulting solution can be sprayed around your property to keep raccoons away.