As cute and cuddly as raccoons may look, they are not pets, and should not be treated like pets.
Raccoons are wild animals that can cause severe harm and damage under the confines of a home. Unfortunately, keeping a raccoon as a pet is rare for a reason. They are not bred to coexist with humans in a domestic environment like most dogs and cats.

Before you let one of these masked bandits live in your house, first consider these 7 reasons why it’s probably not a bright idea.

1) Rabies and Other Infectious Diseases

 Studies show that raccoons make up nearly 30% of all rabies cases in the United States. Raccoons are also known to carry zoonic parasites and infectious diseases that can spread to you, your family, and your pets.

Additionally, raccoon droppings can may raccoon roundworm; a parasitic worm that can harm both humans and pets. The egg spores in the raccoon droppings are light and can quickly become airborne, resulting in a dangerous infection.

2) Behavior and Temperament

Raccoons are smart, curious, active, and playful animals. However, they are also demanding, attention-seeking, and unpredictable.

Born to roam wild, raccoons act out when held captive. When trapped in confinement, they will use their long, dexterous, tapered fingers and nails to pry their way out.

Simply put: Adopting any wild animal as a pet is extremely dangerous. Their instincts will often override any “training” you try to impart on them, and they will always act in unpredictable ways.

3) Known to Act Out if Unhappy

When upset or moody, raccoons can act like hormonal teenagers. These selfish critters can turn vengeful, aggressive, and territorial in an instant all to assert their dominance.

 “Once they hit sexual maturity at about six months of age, they are no longer gentle and cuddly,” wildlife expert, David Seerveld stated. He goes on to explain, “suddenly and without warning,” your adorable, gentle pet can flip a switch and “bite your face off.” 

Their tendency to act out makes interacting with others close to impossible. In a human home, raccoons often feel trapped—which can stir up extra agitation and hatred to fuel the fire.

4) Damage to House

If you haven’t already noticed, raccoons aren’t the most considerate of animals. As wild animals, they get irritable if caged in one place for too long. Once let out, they will explore every square inch of your house.

Translation? Say hello to torn and scratched furniture, chewed-up cords, and broken valuables everywhere.

Everything must be not only child-proof but also raccoon-proof? Now that’s a lot to ask for.

5) Say Goodbye to Your Time and Money

Taking care of a raccoon as a pet is a full-time job that can break the bank over time. To make sure a raccoon doesn’t escape; you would need to invest in an expensive cage that locks and is sturdy enough to handle a lot of shenanigans.

Then, add on the cost of house damage repairs from emotional outbursts and mischievous behavior. It all adds up.

6) Nearly Impossible to Potty Train

Due to their stubborn nature, raccoons can be difficult to potty train.

While they can be trained to use a litterbox, if you irritate them, they will willfully punish you by having accidents around the home; raccoons hold grudges!

7) Adapted to a Nocturnal Lifestyle

As nocturnal species, raccoons are most active at night. For raccoons held in captivity, this can pose a problem, as most humans sleep during the night. Pet raccoons may keep you up at night by scratching their cage or escaping and causing trouble in your home while you sleep.