What Noise Does Raccoon Make – 5 Vocalizations Explained

What Noise Does Raccoon Make

Curious about what noise does raccoon makes? While raccoons are generally nocturnal and solitary, their vocalizations serve essential purposes in expressing emotions and establishing territories. From a range of chitters, purrs, and growls to more distinct calls, raccoons use their vocal repertoire to convey warnings, signal distress, or communicate with their young.

In this exploration, we’ll unravel the mystery of the noises raccoons make, providing a glimpse into their communicative world and shedding light on the diverse sounds that fill the nocturnal air.

What Noise Does Raccoon Make?

Raccoons can make various noises, and they communicate in different ways. Here are some sounds they commonly make:

  • Chittering/Chattering: Raccoons often produce a chittering or chattering sound, especially when they are excited, curious, or communicating with other raccoons.
  • Growling: When raccoons feel threatened or are expressing aggression, they may emit a growling noise to warn others to stay away.
  • Purring: Raccoons can also produce a purring-like sound, which is often associated with contentment. They may purr when they are relaxed or grooming themselves.
  • Hissing: Raccoons may hiss as a warning signal. This sharp, exhaling sound is often accompanied by bared teeth and a defensive posture. Hissing is a way for raccoons to communicate that they feel threatened or agitated and should be approached with caution.
  • Screaming: In certain situations, raccoons can emit a high-pitched scream. This scream is typically a distress call, often heard during mating season or when a raccoon is in pain or facing a serious threat. It can be a startling and loud noise, serving as a vocal expression of extreme stress or danger.

Remember that raccoon vocalizations can vary, and they may make different sounds depending on the situation. These descriptions provide a general idea, but individual raccoons might have unique variations in their vocalizations.

Table: Common Raccoon Sounds

ChittersHigh-pitched social soundsContentment, excitement, communication
PurringRelaxation noiseContentment
GrowlsLow, guttural soundsWarning, distress, territorial claims
ScreamsLoud, high-pitched criesDistress, mating calls
HissesSharp, hissing soundsDefensive response

What noises do raccoons make while fighting? 

When raccoons engage in fights, the noises can be quite distinctive and intense. The sounds associated with raccoon fights often include aggressive growls, loud chattering, and hissing. Raccoons are territorial animals, and conflicts arise over territory boundaries, mating rights, or access to resources. 

The growling serves as a warning while chattering and hissing are aggressive vocalizations used to establish dominance or intimidate opponents. These fights can be particularly noisy, and the sounds may carry over a considerable distance, especially during the breeding season when competition for mates is heightened. 

If you hear these intense vocalizations, it’s a clear indication of raccoon territorial disputes or mating-related conflicts.

What noises do raccoons make while they are happy?

Happy raccoon noises are generally characterized by more positive and content vocalizations. While raccoons are not as known for expressing happiness through sounds as some other animals, they may exhibit behaviors that suggest contentment. Happy raccoons might emit soft purring-like sounds when they are relaxed, comfortable, or enjoying a grooming session.

Additionally, they may engage in gentle chittering, especially during social interactions with other raccoons, which can be a sign of camaraderie and well-being. Observing their playful activities, such as frolicking or exploring without signs of distress, can also be indicative of contentment.

While not as overtly vocal about their happiness as some animals, raccoons do exhibit positive behaviors and subtle sounds when they are in a good mood.

What noises do raccoons make while they are angry?

Angry raccoon noises are distinct and typically serve as warnings or expressions of aggression. When raccoons feel threatened or are engaged in a confrontation, they may produce a series of aggressive sounds. 

Growling is a common noise associated with anger in raccoons, serving as a clear signal for intruders to stay away. Hissing is another vocalization expressing displeasure or irritation, often accompanied by bared teeth and defensive postures. Additionally, loud chattering or sharp, high-pitched screams may occur during intense conflicts. These aggressive vocalizations are meant to establish dominance, ward off perceived threats, or resolve disputes over territory or resources. 

If you encounter angry raccoon noises, it’s advisable to keep a safe distance, as raccoons can become defensive and may act aggressively when they feel cornered or provoked.

Baby raccoon noises

Baby raccoons, also known as kits, produce a variety of adorable and distinctive noises. These sounds are often softer and higher-pitched compared to those of adult raccoons. One common noise is a gentle chittering or purring sound, especially when the kits are content, comfortable, or seeking attention from their mother. 

Whimpering or whining noises may also be heard, particularly if the kits are hungry, in need of care, or expressing mild distress. As they start to explore their surroundings, baby raccoons may emit curious and playful chirps or coos. These vocalizations help them communicate with their mother and siblings, establishing a connection within the raccoon family.

Listening to baby raccoon noises can be a charming and endearing experience, reflecting the young ones’ innocence and dependence on their caregiver.

Do raccoons make noise at night?

Raccoons are nocturnal animals, meaning they are most active during the night. During nighttime hours, you may hear a variety of sounds from raccoons. Common noises include chittering, growling, hissing, and sometimes even high-pitched screams. Raccoons are known for their vocalizations, which they use to communicate with each other.

Chittering and growling might signify social interactions or territorial disputes while hissing often occurs when they feel threatened. Occasionally, high-pitched screams may be heard, especially during mating season or when raccoons are distressed. 

These nocturnal sounds are part of their natural behavior as they navigate their environment, interact with each other, and establish territories under the cover of darkness.

Do raccoons make noise during the day?

While raccoons are primarily nocturnal animals, they can also make noise during the day, especially in urban or suburban environments where they have adapted to human activities. 

During daylight hours, you might hear raccoons chattering, hissing, or making other vocalizations. These daytime sounds could be related to social interactions, searching for food, or defending their territory. 

It’s not uncommon for raccoons to be active during the day, particularly if they are seeking food sources or if there’s a disruption in their usual nocturnal routine. However, their daytime activity levels and noise are generally less pronounced compared to their more active periods during the night.

Noises that scare raccoons

Raccoons can be sensitive to certain sounds that may scare or deter them. Here’s a list of noises that are commonly known to have this effect:

  • Loud Music or Noise: Playing loud music or creating loud noises can startle raccoons and make them uncomfortable.
  • Ultrasonic Devices: Ultrasonic devices emit high-frequency sounds that are audible to raccoons but can be irritating, encouraging them to leave the area.
  • Motion-Activated Alarms: Devices that trigger alarms or lights in response to motion can startle raccoons and discourage them from staying in the vicinity.
  • Water Sprinklers: Motion-activated sprinkler systems can surprise raccoons with bursts of water, deterring them from the area.
  • Human Voice or Talking Radios: The presence of human voices or talking radios can make raccoons uneasy, as they may associate it with the presence of people.
  • Metallic or Clanging Sounds: Raccoons may be scared off by sudden and loud metallic or clanging sounds, disrupting their sense of security.
  • Whistles or Horns: Shrill noises produced by whistles or horns can startle raccoons and make them uncomfortable in the area.

It’s important to note that while these sounds may temporarily scare raccoons, they might become accustomed to them over time. Combining various deterrent methods and practicing consistent efforts to make the area less appealing can be more effective in deterring raccoons.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Raccoon Noises

Q1: What noises do raccoons make, and what do they mean?

A: Raccoons communicate through various noises, including chittering, growling, hissing, and even high-pitched screams. These sounds serve different purposes – chittering and gentle chattering often indicate social interactions or contentment while growling and hissing are aggressive vocalizations used in defense or during confrontations. High-pitched screams are typically distress calls.

Q2: Do raccoons make noise when they mate?

A: Yes, raccoons can be vocal during mating season. The mating process involves various sounds such as chattering, hissing, and even high-pitched screams. These vocalizations are part of their mating rituals and may serve to attract mates or establish dominance among competing individuals.

Q3: Why are raccoon noises important for their survival?

A: Raccoon noises play a crucial role in their survival. Communication helps in establishing territory boundaries, warning about potential threats, and facilitating social interactions within the raccoon community. The variety of sounds they produce serves as a means of navigation, expression, and defense in their environment.

Q4: Are raccoon noises more prominent during certain times of the day?

A: Raccoons are primarily nocturnal, so their vocalizations are often more pronounced at night. However, they can make noise during the day, especially if they feel threatened, are in mating season, or encounter disturbances in their routine.

Q5: What are the noise signs that raccoons may be in my attic?

A: Raccoons in the attic often produce distinctive sounds that can serve as indicators. These noises include heavy thumping or walking sounds, scratching, and occasional chittering or chattering. Raccoons are nocturnal, so these sounds are typically more noticeable at night. 


Understanding raccoon noises is essential for comprehending their communication and behavior. From chittering expressions of camaraderie to aggressive growls signalling defense, raccoons employ a diverse vocal repertoire. High-pitched screams during mating and subtle purring in contentment reveal the nuances of their emotions. While primarily nocturnal, raccoons can adapt to human environments, responding to disturbances with a range of vocalizations. Appreciating these sounds enhances our insight into raccoon social dynamics, survival strategies, and their ability to navigate both natural and urban landscapes.

About Tanya Garg 82 Articles
I'm Tanya, the dedicated raccoon enthusiast behind racoonpet.com. My mission is to share my knowledge about raccoons through insightful blogs, fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation for these intelligent creatures. Join me on a journey to learn more about raccoons, their behavior, and the importance of ensuring their safe relocation when necessary. Let's together create a world where raccoons and humans coexist harmoniously and safely.