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Raccoon problems, which we’ve reported on before, apparently persist in Shepherd Park. Discussion on a neighborhood list has recently explored how to keep the critters from feasting on garbage:

Writes one poster:

Currently, a racoon is having his dinner out of my neighbors trash can. It is seldom with a lid and often trash is placed beside it, rather than in it.

If we keep feeding these animals, they will continue to come back. The family will come to feed also and we will suddenly wake up and be surprised that we are overrun with raccoons, rats and the like.

It is really not that hard to put the trash in the container and shut the lid!

This has been going on for over a year and nothing changes, why?

Among the responses:

Rocks can help. So can finking out your neighbor:

Even with the lid on the can a raccoon is still able to get inside. My husband found that out the hard way when he took trash out one night. When he opened the lid, a raccoon looked up at him and then jumped out and ran away. What we have started doing is to put a heavy rock on top so that they can’t open it. But if your neighbor’s trash can is in the alley with the trash beside it you can call 202-727-1000 and say that you want to make a complaint regarding loose trash. But you would have to make sure that the government can get there before it is picked up so that they can see it and give your neighbor a ticket. Enough tickets might get them to keep their area cleaner.

There’s a great future in plastics. And elastics. And Lysol:

Any future upgrade of the Supercans in D.C. needs to incorporate a heavier grade of plastic & a quick-release latch on the front of the cans.

Another short-term solution is to purchase the appropriate length elastic tie-down strap. Stretch the strap from the handle on the rear of the can across the top & secure it to the aluminum upload bar on the front of the can.

Keep the contents sprayed with Lysol aerosol to cover the smell of food products.