By Chris Williams on January 19, 2018.

We know that raccoons do sometimes get into homes, holing up in chimneys or attics, and often requiring professional removal. Did you know that it’s not an unusual occurrence for a raccoon to literally fall through a ceiling into a living space? Now that would wake you up!

Gates Wildlife, a company in Toronto, has seen its share of raining raccoons. In late November, employees arrived at a Toronto office to find a hole in the ceiling above a desk and a reported 40-pound raccoon fast asleep under the desk. In Toronto’s airport, a raccoon stuck its head out of a ceiling hole just above baggage claim and its photo quickly went viral. Texas also seemed to have an especially good year for falling raccoons as three different news stories featured a drop: into the apartment of an Arlington woman, into a San Antonio college building as the maintenance worker mopped nearby, and into a Texas corrections office.


Squirrels also frequent attics and ceiling voids but it’s the much heavier raccoons that bring the house down. Commercial buildings with drop ceilings are especially at risk from coon collapse. Residential ceilings collapse most often when ceiling drywall has been weakened by moisture or mold, or when the accumulated urine and feces of resident raccoons soaks into the ceiling. For example, in another Toronto case a few years ago, a resident raccoon had established its attic bathroom latrine right above the bed of the resident. You guessed it–in the middle of the night, all the accumulated waste, the drywall, and the raccoon came down on top of the sleeping resident. The only injuries were to the pride of both the resident and the raccoon.

The ceiling damage is often only part of the story as the sometimes panicked raccoon goes on a rampage trying to escape. In Tennessee, a liquor store owner shows video of a ceiling raccoon ransacking shelves and breaking bottles after it ended up on the showroom floor.


Of course it’s not good to have raccoons dropping from above or running amok, but it’s especially not good to have raccoons living in your home from a health aspect. Raccoons can carry rabies and they also harbor a roundworm in their feces that can cause blindness and neurological problems in humans.

If you suspect that you may be playing host to a raccoon or other large animal in your attic, ceiling void, chimney, or elsewhere, give us a call. At Colonial Pest, we have certified nuisance wildlife specialists and trappers on staff. We also specialize in pest exclusion measures. That means that we can point out vulnerable areas on your home that raccoons and other animals will utilize to get inside, and we can seal or repair them.

For more on living with raccoons, see these blogs:

[Source: It’s winter. Look out for falling raccoons, Karin Brulliard, The Washington Post, Jan. 9, 2018]



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