Raccoon babies hug after rescue from Dedham chimney

DEDHAM –  Police in Dedham are sharing tips for keeping animals out of your chimney after two baby raccoons were rescued from a resident’s fireplace.”Their eyes aren’t even open yet – they are likely just two weeks old!” police posted to Facebook along with a video that appears to show the two infant raccoons hugging.
These little raccoon babies were rescued from a resident’s fireplace chimney. Their eyes aren’t even open yet – they are likely just two weeks old!

Fireplace chimneys have been popular spots for raccoons this season- as, for a momma raccoon, climbing onto a rooftop and then ascending down into a chimney, provides her with a safe shelter within which to give birth to her young.

Most chimneys have smoke shelves which are flat surfaces located between the smoke chamber and the firebox – and this shelf is what serves as both the nesting-and rearing spot.

If you find you have raccoons in your chimney, there are some ways you can to try to eradicate them. These include making loud noises, shining bright lights, and/or placing rags soaked with substances with strong odors such as vinegar, up into the chamber below the shelf.

Quite often though, while the momma raccoon may successfully escape the odor and climb out onto the roof, her kits, being too young, fall down under the smoke shelf and wind up inside the fireplace.

In this case, it’s best to contact Animal Control or a nuisance wildlife professional. We strongly urge against any unnecessary exposures or physical contact with raccoons, as let’s not forget that raccoons can be carriers of Rabies.

Once the raccoons have been safely extracted from the chimney, the next recommendation is to place a cap on the chimney to prevent further, similar incidents. And if you haven’t yet had any animals in your chimney, then placing a cap is a good preventive measure too!

For more information, or assistance, contact your Animal Control Officer. 781.751.9106Posted by Dedham Police Department on Tuesday, July 12, 2022

The department said chimneys have been “popular spots” this season for raccoons and their babies looking for shelter – with the smoke shelf acting as a nesting spot. Anyone who finds raccoons there can try making a lot of noise, shining a light, or placing rags soaked in vinegar in their fireplace. But if the animals are still there, or the mother leaves the babies behind, it’s time to call animal control or a professional.Police added that a chimney cap is a good way to prevent animals from getting inside in the first place.

CBSBoston.com Staff

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