Having pesky critters doing damage in your yard is bad enough, but when they start getting into your garbage, that’s a whole new ball game. Raccoon tend to be the biggest problem when it comes to trash raids, though you may need to watch out for other pests poking around your garbage bags.
Don’t Leave it Out
While it’s tempting to get your garbage well out of the house, try to keep it under lock and key through the week between pick-ups. A shed, garage or mud room will be a much safer spot to keep trash rather than have your cans outside in the yard. An indoor garbage can with a tight rubber seal can be very helpful to keep your trash inside without worrying quite so much about the smell.
This suggestion can also apply right on garbage day. If you can, hold off on putting out the trash until that very morning so it’s not out at the curb all night. If that really won’t work for you, make sure you definitely follow the next tip.
Critter-Proof Garbage Cans
There are several varieties of these on the market, and they can be a great deterrent against clever animals that get plain garbage cans open (mostly raccoons for this). A tight fitting lid is not critter-proof. Cans are built with latches that hold the lid in place, and usually take a certain twist-and-pull motion to get them open. The mechanisms aren’t actually difficult to open, so don’t worry that you’ll need a crowbar to get into your own garbage cans. It’s more about knowing the trick to unlatching the top.
Even if you are using good tough-to-open cans, you still need to follow the previous tip by keeping your cans out of sight as much as possible. The more access the critters have to your garbage cans, the more likely they are to find a way in.
When you are throwing out really aromatic items (chicken bones or other food scraps, for example), you should try to wrap them in an extra plastic bag before dumping into the main trash bag. Raccoon have an excellent sense of smell and they’ll be a lot more diligent getting into that bin when something attracts their attention.
Use a Good Repellent
Sometimes the best approach is to just get the pests out of your yard entirely. Shake-Away pelleted formula for large animals would be the best choice if you’re looking to get rid of raccoons in the trash. If your pests tend to be smaller, you can stick with the small animal formula. In either case, you just shake the product around your garbage to help warn off the pests.