How Dangerous Can A Squirrel Really Be?
There are some pests we can look at and instantly determine that they are a threat. If you're seeing yellow jackets crawling around on your home, you know those insects need to go. If a skunk scurries across your lawn and disappears under your porch, no one has to tell you that skunks stink to have around. You know. But, there are some pests we actually encourage to be in our yards. Squirrels are one of them.
There is no doubt that squirrels are cute. And, for most of us, it is cool to see a squirrel come up close to the house. A squirrel bounding along a deck railing will have you and your kids stopping to watch them through the window. You may be the type of person who likes to put food out to lure them in close. Why wouldn't you? They're fun to watch. You may even sit on your porch, deck, or in your backyard and hope to feed them from your hand. We get it. It's not like squirrels are wolves, bears, or lions. They're harmless, right?
4 Reasons to Discourage Squirrels
Squirrels are wild animals and wild animals are unpredictable. If they feel threatened or are protecting their young, they can attack.
The more squirrels you have in your yard, the more chances you have that one of those squirrels will chew its way into your home.
Inside a home, a squirrel will cause damage with its teeth, leaving feces and urine everywhere, and present a hazard to anyone who corners it.
Squirrels carry fleas, ticks, mites, and other parasites. When they get into a home, they don't usually come alone.
Are Squirrels Dangerous?
Most of the time, they aren't. That's one of the reasons we don't mind having them around. If you approach most squirrels, they'll run away. But squirrels have been known to attack children, pets, and adults. There are many documented cases of squirrels attacking and inflicting wounds. And, while rabies is rare for rodents, it is possible for a squirrel to carry rabies. It is also important to understand that rabies can cause squirrels to attack people. The rabies virus can make wild animals that are normally docile become aggressive and territorial.
We understand that it is fun to have squirrels in your yard. We're not saying you need to get rid of all those fun squirrels. We'd just like to encourage you to exercise caution. They can present a danger, especially if they get into your home. Always call a wildlife professional like Rottler to safely remove them when they get in. Wild animals and the parasites they can carry are a threat we should always take seriously--even when those wild animals are cute little squirrels.