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Need A Compassionate Solution VS. A Quick Cruel Fix

Need a compassionate solution to what my apartment manager deems to be a raccoon and feral cat problem.
I am in need of an immediate and proven solution to what my apartment manager deems to be a raccoon and feral cat problem in the complex where I reside.
She has hired CRITTER CONTROL to set out traps to both entice and capture the raccoons and feral cats who live in and around the apartments. These traps are set out in direct sun, wrapped in heavy black plastic, without any water or food (except what is used for bait) and they have no one responsible for checking the traps on a regular basis. They have in fact stated that according to law the traps only need to be checked every 24 hours.
Is there anyone who has had actual experience along with positive results on how to deter raccoons from entering these traps? Am looking for a solution that would not be harmful to animals, the environment or humans.
I am really hoping to receive some intelligent and doable solutions and am not looking for those who are always quick with the nonnative species rhetoric. Thanks for your help.

DO NOT USE CRITTER CONTROL!!! 30.Apr.2009 16:43


I was walking to work one day when I saw a guy getting out of a "Critter Control" truck. I thought, hey, cool, live traps! So I stopped to talk to him. He informed me that the animals they "humanely trap" are all put to death. "Humanely," of course. Even if you wanted them not to kill them, he said, "We have no choice." (Of course they have a choice. This is bullshit.) He said the law demands death for so-called "vectors," which are the animals that they are asked to come and trap: Raccoons, skunks, squirrels, opossums, and etc.

This is not "humane," this is a racket. This is making people think you're gonna come and help them with their "problem" in a way that does not harm animals. But this is completely wrong, a total lie.


A better solution to any problem between oneself and non-human animals: Just find out how they are getting in, and block their entry. Then quit complaining about it, because they live on this planet too. Why do humans have such naked territorial aggression that they can't even allow another living being to survive if they see them anywhere in their vicinity? It's one of the most reprehensible things about our species.

Don't use critter control! 30.Apr.2009 16:48


Let your manager know that Critter Control kills all the animals they trap, they do not just "remove" them. It's a way for yuppies to have their dirty work done out of sight and out of mind. She may change her mind.

As for what to do about the traps, GET RID OF THEM. Disable them, remove them, get rid of them, and then kick Critter Control's ass out of town.

Call your local Feral Cat Coalition to deal with the cats, and SAVE THOSE RACCOONS by getting rid of those traps. There's no reason to kill raccoons. They're awesome animals, and generally they move along. They don't usually sleep in the same place for more than one night in a row unless they are rearing babies, which they are likely doing at this time of the year. So leave them be until the babies are old enough to travel, and they'll be on their way. And then just take some chicken wire or something, and cover up whatever access they have to your building that's causing the problem. Also, don't feed them. Keep cat and dog food and scraps out of their reach, and they won't bother you.

We need a REAL humane alternative in this town, that will come around and help people deal with their fears about wild animals without killing them.

Much more humane solution 30.Apr.2009 16:55


If she MUST remove them - and I don't know why she feels she must -- here is a MUCH more humane alternative. This site sells live traps for all kinds of species, including both raccoons and feral cats:  http://www.wildlife-traps.com/?gclid=CK-on8TlmZoCFRwDagodZmpR9Q

She - or you - can place them wherever needed, can check them frequently, and can take the animals somewhere safe. Do NOT take raccoons to a vet or the vet will, by law, most likely kill the raccoons as a so-called "vector." I'd call the nice people at Out to Pasture farm sanctuary to figure out what you could do with the cats, as they have feral cats out there and would probably know where you could take them. Here is their website:  http://outtopasturesanctuary.org/ (click on "contact us").

For the raccoons, you can just take them a ways away (after making sure there are no abandoned babies near by, which is a possibility), and let them go. Some animals that are live-trapped and then moved have a very hard time surviving, but raccoons are pretty resourceful and tend not to have issues adjusting to new surroundings.

Let us know how this works out. If nothing else, do at the very least get rid of those critter control traps and tell them you will not be needing their services. They are cruel and inhumane, and should be exposed for who they really are. They don't "live" trap animals, they simply trap them and then kill them later.

No Need to Kill 30.Apr.2009 17:06

Animal Friendly Vegans

Tell your apt manager to call off Critter control, and we will come and take care of the issue. Live traps can be used to humanely transfer animals away from the building without killing them as Critter Control would do. She can spend far less money simply ordering a single live trap than contracting with critter control. I will personally come out there and move the raccoons for her if she likes. She can call the feral cat coalition of oregon ( http://www.feralcats.com/) or the feral cat coalition of SW Portland for guidance about the cats:
Neighborhood: Southwest Portland
Portland, OR 97201
(503) 797-2606

There's no reason to take lives just for convenience. Raccoons are actually really cool animals. They're super intelligent and are often quite friendly (though I would advise giving any wild animal room, and NEVER feed them because it puts them into danger from other humans if you help them to trust our species).

If your apt manager would be interested in having some animal friendly vegans come to your building to help with this in a humane manner, please let us know via a post here. And then we can figure out how to arrange a meeting.

To prevent 30.Apr.2009 17:06


To prevent raccoons from entering the trap, make openings in the plastic so they can get to the food without entering the trap. Raccoons will reach in and remove food if they can.

Feral cats, unfortunately, are a different matter. However, if they ever see the trap close, and if there is other food available, they will chose not to enter the trap.

Thanks for caring 30.Apr.2009 17:29

animal lover

"I am really hoping to receive some intelligent and doable solutions and am not looking for those who are always quick with the nonnative species rhetoric."

Yes. I get pretty tired of speciesist xenophobics also. It's easy to have no compassion for nonnative species when you're not talking about your own species. If we want to address the non-native and invasive human species, I'm all for that. Otherwise, have some compassion.

You should see if you can talk your apt manager into letting you deal with the problem instead of critter control. I think there are some links above to live traps. It would be better for you to do the trapping, if trapping must be done, than to let a company that will kill the animals do it. Please send critter control packing. They are killers and do not deserve anyone's business. They are disingenuous liars who pretend they will save the animals when they know full well they will not. They're also really expensive, so you should ask your apt manager to cancel their contract, buy you a live trap, and then cut your rent for a month to make up the difference so u can deal with this yourself.

hurray for raccoons 30.Apr.2009 18:08

also elk

Raccoons are a native species in North America -- unlike, for instance, us, who invaded from Africa.

Secure the building with fences and gates and whatever to keep the raccoons out of the trash.

And then leave them alone, they live here.

Please try to make a deal with your 30.Apr.2009 22:30


landlady that you will deal with the problem, with the help of the Feral Cat Coalition and/or other groups, for free!

The Feral Cat Coalition can help you trap cats and find a place to relocate them. Kit at Out To Pasture may be able to take them if Feral Cat Coalition can't find a place. In Defense of Animals may have some people and other resources (they have traps to loan too) to help.

Phone numbers:
Feral Cat Coalition:  http://www.feralcats.com/ 503-797-2606
In Defense of Animals, contact Matt: 503-249-9996
Out to Pasture Sanctuary, contact Kit: 503-493-9155 (naturopath's office, but she answers the phone)

Feral cats can't just be dumped in the wilderness somewhere - they rely on humans, and need to be spayed/neutered and CAREFULLY relocated (like, kept in large cages for up to a month in order to lay down their scent at the new place).

Someone from the above will help you with this! Maybe a volunteer will just take over the project, if you need that.

You can trap the raccoons and relocate them. Someone from the above list will help with that, and also figuring out where to put them. You just need to tell them your situation and someone should step up to help you.

Really, how could your landlady refuse the offer, if you're getting others involved and humanely dealing with the problem?

Keep writing here to let us know what's going on and if the above help isn't adequate for you or you need a hand. Good luck and don't give up, for the sake of these little beings who just want to live, as we do.

YES! Call In Defense of Animals! 01.May.2009 08:24

IDA friend

Please do call In Defense of Animals. Their number is (503)249-9996. Tell them your situation, and I just know people will help to save these lives. Please do this.

Do you need someone to contact your landlord to talk some sense to her? Let people know, and the community will help you. PLEASE keep us updated. We want to know that these animals have been saved.

Leave it to the pros 01.May.2009 12:41


Let me start by saying that I am not affiliated Critter Control. I am professional wildlife control operator in another state. I also earned a degree in wildlife management and have extensive training in resolving human/wildlife conflicts. Please consider the following:

First you need to check your local regulations to determine if it is legal to relocate raccoons in your state or municipality. In many states, this is illegal and you can be fined for doing so.

Consider the danger of trapping animals if you do not have experience doing so. I have seen what an angry raccoon in a trap is capable of doing. I have seen traps purchased by homeowners that have been ripped apart. Raccoons can also reach through many traps and grasp and scratch at anyone or anything that gets close enough. Make sure you have the propper protective gear to handle the trapped animal safely.

If it is indeed illegal to relocate raccoons in your area, it is for a reason. It is nearly impossible to tell if the raccon(s) you trap are carrying a disease. If you relocate a diseased animal into a healthy population, you are then causing many more animals to suffer and die, not to mention the possibility of increasing the hazzards to other people that may come in contact with the animal. Even if you take a perfectly healthy raccon that has lived it's life in an urban/suburban setting and introduce it into a remote wilderness area, there is a very high risk that that animal will not survive. An animal that is used to raiding trash cans and living off of human scraps will not know how to forage for food in a wild environment. It will have to learn to compete for food, water and shelter.

The first step should be exclusion. Keep trash cans and dumpster secured. make sure there are no entry points allowing the animals to live in the buildings. If you remove their food source, and there source of shelter, they will often leave on there own.

The primary reason for the spread of raccoon rabies on the east coast is from careless relocation. This has lead to the needless death and suffering of thousands and thousands of animals and hundreds of people as well. Please consider the facts that I have given you and let the professionals handle the problem.

Offers Of Help Appreciated 01.May.2009 13:47

Apartment Dweller

First, thanks to everyone who has given support, suggestions and offers of help.
I would be very interested in hearing from anyone who is willing to get involved in assisting in the safe and compassionate way of dealing with this issue. As previously stated the wellbeing of the animals, environment and humans are my first concerns. Please let me know via this site how to contact you so we can discuss options and methods.
As frustrated as I am with the manager, she really is only carrying out the orders of the property management company, Princeton Property, (503)794-9004. They are the ones who, I assume, gave authorization for her to call Critter Control, (503) 244-0993. I doubt if either of these businesses would be willing to rationally discuss or consider alternative means.
I will keep those who are interested updated on this matter as I also intend to do some in depth investigation into this and similar companies. Again, thank you.

Apartment dweller - 01.May.2009 14:15


some numbers of agencies/groups and specific people in those groups were just given to YOU. Please, you contact THEM. That's what they're there for. Some of us are affiliated with those groups and you'll reach us that way. Why are you hesitating about contacting them, and wanting to collect personal emails at this point? If you don't find adequate help with the options listed above (In Defense of Animals, Feral Cat Coalition, Out to Pasture), come back for more help - I'll post my personal email address then. What would keep you from calling Matt or Feral Cat Coalition and make you want to collect random email addresses at this point?

Please act on this pronto and just make the calls!

Not For Lack Of Trying 01.May.2009 16:08

Apartment Dweller

The calls WERE made. IDA did not return the call. FCC asks for a $30.00 donation which I do not have as I do not have a job, they do not pick up cats and I do not have a car, and whereas S/N is great this will not help these cats as the manager wants them off the property regardless. Have not yet tried the sanctuary but will do so.
Also Animal Friendly Vegan stated, at least I thought they did , that a meeting/contact could be arranged to help with this problem. I am not expecting someone to do this solely on their own, I will help where I can but my resources, as stated above, are somewhat limited.

O.k. - 01.May.2009 18:21


Matt with IDA should call you back - if he doesn't call soon, call back again. If you don't have the money and transport, please tell them and they or someone can pay for that and do the transport. Call Kit at the Out to Pasture number and explain the situation, and hopefully she with IDA or some other volunteer can work something out. But that office closes for the weekend, so call now... You're right about FCC - sometimes they get more involved than at other times and it sounds like they weren't too helpful to you this time.

Sorry. I'll bet this is stressful for you. Your landlady sucks.

Also 01.May.2009 18:28


please continue to write here if you are or aren't getting the help you need. We'll try to find other resources if those leads aren't working out shortly. Money shouldn't be the concern - we'll figure out a way to pay for it.

To apt dweller and also the wildlife person 01.May.2009 21:51

a friend to one, not the other i think

I'll give you a call tomorrow unless you've heard from IDA. I just saw this thread, and it's almost 10. I don't want to wake anyone up, but it's important to me to do what I can for these animals. THANK you for caring.

Regarding the person above who wants us to "leave it to the professionals"? Fuck off. Seriously. As a wildlife rehabilitator, I will say right off that you, a wildlife "manager," have no fucking idea what you're talking about. You see the world from the perspective of someone who makes a living from killing other animals. You are a person who sees other animals as a "nuisance." Please keep your "advice" as no one needs it here.

Regarding this LUDICROUS statement that you made:

"First you need to check your local regulations to determine if it is legal to relocate raccoons in your state or municipality...."

No, no we don't. We don't need to check with "local regulations" because we do not give a fuck. We're talking about saving animals, and we don't give a shit what "regulations" have to say about it. Thanks anyway.

Oh wait! 01.May.2009 22:21


I did not realize you didn't give your contact info. Please do call IDA again. You can also email Matt at  matt@idausa.org.

Well, if someone here is 02.May.2009 00:06


willing to help out, maybe contact Matt at IDA, and people can get hooked up with this person in that way.