Raccoon problem is getting worse in Lake Oswego


Numbers and audacity of raccoons makes LO homeowner feel as if she was under seige

Our city has become overrun with raccoons.

Since moving here in 2005, we have had problems with raccoons at all of our properties, and it is getting worse; more raccoons are coming. I am an animal advocate, and would never want to harm wildlife; however, this raccoon problem is becoming overwhelming and is making it difficult to safely live in this city.

If I leave my patio doors open, the raccoons come in my house. I have to lock my cat door or a whole herd of raccoons will invade my house. The raccoons have lost their fear of humans and walk in our house right in front of us and attempt to eat my cat food. This is getting insane and dangerous.

There are at least 10-15 raccoons that make nightly rounds in my neighborhood (in the Lakewood neighborhood) looking for food. I see them when I am out at night, going from house to house. Many of them have multiple babies in tow, which means more hungry raccoons attempting to break in houses.

Last week a raccoon attacked my 5-pound precious little dog. We were right there and my husband kicked and hit the raccoon and I reached in and grabbed my yelping dog away from the raccoon. Amazingly, we were not bit by the raccoon. It still wanted to fight us until my husband threw dirt in its face; it was still coming at us as we ran with our little dog.

We rushed her to the emergency vet and we are so fortunate that she escaped with bruises and bumps. I was a nervous wreck until we found out her fate. If we had not been right there, she would have been killed as the raccoon was full-on attacking her. A tenant’s precious Westie dog was killed on their deck a few months ago in Palisades by raccoons. These dogs and cats are our family members, and we can’t live under this siege.

I called Fish and Game, and they told me that it is illegal to trap and relocate a raccoon. They told me to trap and humanely euthanize them, or hire a service that might charge me up to $300 per raccoon to euthanize them. They issued me a permit to trap and kill 10 raccoons. This is not an adequate solution.

We certainly are not going to kill raccoons. We can’t have them so brazen and coming in our house on a nightly basis.

This is so dangerous and there is no solution on a government level. We have fortressed our house, but the raccoons are in our yard every night. Someone is going to get severely hurt before a solution is obtained. I have heard that some people are feeding the raccoons. This is very dangerous and only creates more problems for the neighborhood and for the raccoons. More food means more baby raccoons being born.

When we lived in Newport Beach, Calif., animal control would deal with problem wildlife, including relocating raccoons (they did not suggest that people take it upon themselves to kill them). We need a solution from our city or Fish and Game before someone gets severely hurt and more family members are killed.

Why won’t animal control help us with this problem?

Kristy Neubo is a resident of Lake Oswego.