It is almost impossible to tell if a raccoon carries rabies or not. Many do, and even if they are not carriers do not be fooled by their cute appearence. They have teath sharp enough to penetrate and enough bacteria to follow it up with an infection.
Most wild animals are in some way or another dangerous. All will attack when backed into a corner.
They sure are. A cornered raccoon can still scratch and bite like few things its size.
Normal non-diseased raccoons are usually not dangerous and most of the time they do tend to avoid people. Attacks from normal raccoons are rare.
Raccoons carry a parasite which is excreted in their feces. Reccoons tend to use the same site repeatedly for defecation. This results in a site that may contain high concentrations of this parsite.
Children playing at such locations may aquire the parasite through ingestion of contaminated soil. Although raccoons do not appear to be affected by the parasite, it a disaster for humans as it feeds on brain tissue and literally destroys the brain of infected humans.
Raccoons should be discouraged in areas where children play. They should also be kept out of houses.
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