Who Should You Call When a Wild Animal Sneaks Into the Home?

Matt Marandola
Written by Matt Marandola
Updated November 18, 2021
A squirrel hiding behind a curtain in a house
Vadim- stock.adobe.com

You should call a wildlife removal specialist or animal control to remove a wild animal from your home

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It’s a lovely day. You just woke up, pet the squirrel, grabbed a cup of coffee, and fed the dog. Until the first sip of coffee hits, and you realize you don’t have a pet squirrel, and you suddenly see a lot of damage has been done to your furniture. Who do you call when there’s a wild animal wreaking havoc in your home?

Ideally, you’ll want to call a wildlife removal company or animal control to handle the problem.

Benefits of Hiring Wildlife Removal Specialists

Realistically, it comes down to the type of animal in your home. For anything other than cats and dogs—like birds, raccoons, squirrels, bats, and skunks—you’ll want to call in a wildlife removal company. 


Wildlife removal focuses on catching the wild animal and often includes a check to see if it’s healthy enough to release into the wild. Wildlife specialists will capture and remove the animal from your home without causing it harm or additional stress.

Because wildlife removal is often a for-profit business, it typically has a larger budget than most government-run animal control agencies, giving them tools that some animal control agencies might not have. They’re also often required to work with local government agencies to ensure the wild animal is safe from harm. The cost of animal removal runs anywhere from $150 to $600 and depends on the size and type of animal.

Clean-Up and Repairs

A wildlife removal company may also charge to help handle any odors or messes (like nests) that may be left behind in your home. They’ll identify what made your home so appealing to the animal in the first place (e.g., an open chimney or hole in the siding), making it easier to get repairs started after the critter has been removed. 

Can I Remove Wild Animals Myself?

All jokes about petting squirrels aside, wild animals can pose a risk to you and any domestic animals you have in the home because they often carry diseases or parasites (not to mention fleas). 

If a critter has found its way inside, it’s best to relocate for the time being or find a way to separate it from the rest of the home. Once the animal is somewhat contained or cordoned off, you should immediately call a wildlife removal service or animal control.

Don’t agitate the animal if it’s outside your home and holed up underneath your deck or in a toolshed. Instead, leave it be and do your best to avoid the area while making the necessary calls.

Can I Hire Animal Control for Wild Animals?

Hiring animal control for animal removal may work, but most of these services focus on domestic cats and dogs. However, because these agencies are often government-run, you likely won’t need to pay anything for animal removal and relocation. When calling to request service, it’s best to ask for any need-to-know information, such as potential costs and if the type of animal is in their scope of work.

How Do Wildlife Removal Companies Remove Wild Animals?

To remove a wild animal, specialists will first find out where they’re hiding and decide whether the animal poses a risk or not. Often enough, these animals are simply looking for shelter and won’t attack you or anyone else unless provoked.

From there, depending on the type of animal, the wildlife removal company will set up the necessary traps to catch them. In some instances, this will not be an option, and different measures will be required.

Preventing Wild Animals From Coming Back

Once the animal is removed, you probably won’t want any more coming back. Take steps, such as regular yard clean-up or securing your trash bin to discourage small animals from coming into your home. You can also try these homemade remedies, which include using a garlic solution to deter animals. Regardless of the method, it’s important to seal any existing holes or burrows so that new animals don’t move in.

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