Thursday, October 27, 2011

I think I have solved our Raccoon and Cat Problem getting into our Garbage

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Today’s Blog Post

I think I have solved our Raccoon and Cat Problem getting into our Garbage
The raccoons in our area are cute. At least for about the few minutes that we are able to catch them crossing the yard, leaving a tree or coming from our neighbor’s attic. The ancient rascals with the cute masked face are just fun to watch as they do their stuff.

But cuteness and fun to watch quickly evaporates when you take a look the next morning at your garbage strewn all over the yard or walkway. If it was just strewn, like pulled out and spread around, it might not be that big a problem. But is usually pulled apart, evidently eaten and smeared from one side of the walkway to the other. On a warmer day it will be covered with flies buzzing around the open contents by the time I get up!

Mr. Raccoon or Mrs. Cat will not clean up after themselves. They leave the mess for me to scoop up. But picking up the mess is one thing, the juices of our food stuff and other things are also left on the walkway are another. Yuk!

Can I say it clearly and honestly, I hate critters that attack our garbage and leave the messes that they do! I hate the many cats in our neighborhood that are left out – or rather let out – to roam our yard and others. Stupid Neighbors are as much a problem as raccoons and cats.

One neighbor harbored the raccoons in her attic. She couldn’t remove them because they were cute. And the cats from her house were freely roaming the area… and at our garbage often.

But our garbage is good stuff – left over stuff that was good.

A roast chicken is amazing to eat for an evening meal. The bones are great to lick clean. But a roast chicken the next morning is less than appetizing on the walkway.

A wonderful bunch of plums were delicious all week long, except for the last six that rotted in the bowel when we hadn’t eaten them. They were tossed in the trash when they went really bad. And the next morning when I had to gather up what was left of the smeared and mushy plums from the ground – I laid off plums for a while.

Peaches and grapes and all kinds of fruits in our garbage seem to be a smorgasbord for raccoons.

Chicken and Beef left over with the bones still having some meat on them is a delicacy for the cat population in our area.

But keeping the garbage inside is not an option we have.

BUT one day, after a series of night raids the critters stopped opening the garbage can. It was as if they simply left. Yet across the street the other folk had experienced an attack again. Our garbage was in the can and not disturbed. Why?

I opened the can and the smell of Pain Thinner waft from the bags.

My wife had cleaned some labels off something that she had bought, using paper towels soaked with Paint Thinner. As she cleaned, the Paint Thinner removed the sticky glue from her purchase. Afterwards she had tossed the scraps of paper toweling in with the refuse. It had enough smell of Paint Thinner left on it that the normal stinky garbage smell was not so evident. It acted like a deodorizer of sorts.

During the night when the critter came and took one sniff… he departed for a better smelling garbage treat.

Now any time that we have the excess of chicken, beef, or fruit treats going out to the garbage can. I purposefully dribble a little bit of Paint Thinner on a paper towel and place it in with the “treats”.

Now I know about spontaneous combustion and soiled rags in a confined space. They will from time to time, if the conditions are right, start on fire. But to have that happen the space and the quantity of soiled rags are a must. A dribble of “Paint Thinner” or a sprinkle of “Varsol” is like a raccoon retardant for our family.

Doing this from time to time seems to make a huge difference.

I also have resorted to taking a small rag soaked in one of the chemicals and wipe out the inside the garbage can itself. However the sunshine of the day tends to evaporate that smell fairly fast… allowing it to last only a day or so.

The direct approach to the garbage bag has proven the best.

Raccoons and Cats have good taste. They only want the best garbage!

Sending a neighbor’s cat home with Paint Thinner on its breath is just plain fun. The cat knows he or she can’t eat that crap so they leave my garbage alone.

The only time it didn’t work was when I was too busy to put in my small dribble on the paper towel. The next morning the critter had left a mess for me to pick up.

I am not sure that it will help you in your area. But it works well in my yard.

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Good luck.

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 

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