Craig's Nuisance Animal Control

2714 Knollwood Dr., Staunton VA 24401

540-430-2163  /   540-430-2161


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Frequently Asked Questions and Facts about Nuisance  Animals

Raccoons are most commonly associated with distemper and rabies. Other viral diseases of raccoons include raccoon parvoviralenteritis, infectious canine hepatitis, tularemia leptospirosis, listeriosis and a host of parasites including round worms, tape worms, fleas, ticks and mites.

Raccoons are the most frequently reported animal species with rabies in the U.S., specifically in eastern and southeastern parts of the country. They can become a problem when they start raiding pet food on porches, garbage cans, bird feeders and chicken coops. They can take up residence under porches, in chimneys and attics. They can become aggressive when confronted and can kill cats.

Groundhogs become a nuisance with their burrowing. They dig extensive burrows under houses, porches, patios, concrete slabs, retaining walls, even swimming pools. They can make house foundations unstable. Groundhogs can gnaw through electric wires creating a fire hazard. They can also seriously injure livestock when horses and cattle step in an unseen groundhog hole. Groundhogs carry fleas and are susceptible to mange and rabies, although it is not very common.

Skunks are passive by nature but can attack if provoked. They have a fairly high incidence of rabies, accounting for almost  one-third of rabies cases in the United States. They also may carry parasites that can vector diseases.

Foxes are generally not a threat to humans unless they have rabies. They will sometimes den under porches and out buildings. They are famous for raiding chicken coops. Red and Gray fox are both susceptible to rabies and distemper and also carry fleas. The Red fox can also have mange but the Gray fox seldom does.

Coyotes have become a real problem in Virginia. They can damage and kill livestock, crops and will kill cats and small dogs. Coyotes can have distemper, hepatitis, parvo virus and mange. Rabies and tularemia also occur and may be transmitted to other animals and humans. Coyotes harbor numerous parasites including mites, ticks, fleas, worms and flukes.

Muskrats damage ponds by burrowing into dams and banks to make dens. The damage to banks around ponds and dams can be extensive where they undermine earthen dams and dikes. They also can damage swimming pools by attempting to burrow into the "bank" (liner).  

Beavers burrow into dams and banks, cut trees, and plug outlet tubes. Their work is conspicuous and they are extremely persistent. Bank dens are 12-18 inches in diameter and will be present whether a dammed lodge is present or not. In fall and winter, a pile of fresh cuttings will be evident near the lodge or main den.



VGIF permit, VTA member