Dog-Proof Raccoon Traps
Kevin Felts 06.22.17
Need to trap raccoons, but have dogs around? Take a look at the dog-proof raccoon trap. This is a metal tube with a spring loaded arm that catches the animals arm.in the tube.
The trick is, the animal has to have an opposing thumb to set the trap off. The trigger is at the bottom of the tube, where the bait is located. The raccoon looks down the tube, reaches inside of it, grabs the trigger and pulls up. In doing so, the trap is activated.
A few nights ago I was walking around the farm when I heard the chickens making a racket. If chickens are making a bunch of noise at night, something is in the chicken house. I ran to the chicken house, looked in, but whatever it was had ran off.
Traditional foothold traps can not be used in the chicken yard. That is unless you want the trap to grab a chicken by its throat. Then you have to butcher the chicken and explain to your wife why you used a trap that could kill chickens.
Securing The Traps
The trap has to be secured so the animal does not run off with it. Some people use a tree limb, or something that has “give” to it; this is called a “drag.” I have some sections of an old telephone pole cut around 18-24 inches long with a stainless steel eye bolt screwed into them.
Attached to the trap is a piece of chain about 12 inches long. At the end of the chain is an “eye” for running cable or chain through.
Run a piece of small chain or cable trough the eye, then secure the chain or cable to something solid, or something that will give.
Personally, I like to pull out all of the slack between the trap and the drag. This ensures the animal can not start running after the trap goes off.
Bait has to be small enough to go inside the trap, which has an inside diameter of 1 3/8 inches.
I tried sardines, but did not have any luck with them.
Just bait the trap with whatever food your target likes to eat. Maybe use some of the dead chicken from the foothold trap as bait?
Personally, I prefer box traps over dog proof foothold traps. This way the animal can be taken far away from my home and safely released. I live in a rural area, so all I have to do is drive a mile down the road and release the animal.
Or, keep the raccoon alive until the pit is ready. Barbecued raccoon is delicious. Just tell the wife and kids it is rabbit.
I stopped using the old style foothold traps years ago.
Be sure to check local laws and regulations before trapping.
Texas has a nuisance animal regulation that covers fur bearing animals:
A landowner on their own land or their authorized agent is not required to have a trapper’s or hunting license if these nuisance animals are taken while causing loss or damage to agricultural crops, livestock, poultry, or personal property. However, such animals or their pelts may not be possessed or sold.
Even though a hunting license is not required to protect livestock, I buy a hunting license every year.
I do not like to harm wildlife, however, something has to be done to protect the chickens. In February of 2017, I bought a dozen new chicks, only one or two remain. Several of my older chickens are also missing.
Unless something is done, all of the chickens will be killed. This is life in a rural area, it is not always pleasant.