West Jordan neighborhood at wit’s end over ‘infestation’ of skunks, raccoons

Sep 13, 2022, 7:58 PM

WEST JORDAN, Utah — A West Jordan neighborhood says they’re experiencing a nuisance infestation that has them at their wit’s end in their own homes. They say skunks are spraying dogs and raccoons are wandering the streets.

Neighbors want something done to help the problem, and they’re hoping the city can step in.

In Amanda Ray’s backyard north of Sierra Newbold Park, fall harvest isn’t going to plan.

She spent some of the day tearing out her tomato and cucumber plants, despite the fact that she’s still waiting for some to ripen.

“I’m sad to rip them out because they’re just about ready; see how there’s a lot of them turning,” she said, pointing over to the tomatoes. “I’m going to rip out the cucumbers.”

Ray wants them gone because she’s worried about what else has been enjoying her garden lately. She’s been finding skunks hiding in the garden early in the morning and getting into tussles with her two dogs.

“They just keep coming, and they just keep coming, and they just keep coming,” she said. “And it went from a small problem to an infestation, is what our other neighbor called it.”

She and several other neighbors told KSL that families of skunks and raccoons have been making the rounds through the area over the past couple months, creating a problem that really stinks.

“It’s dog after dog getting sprayed in their yards,” Ray explained. “Mine got sprayed, the neighbors got sprayed, up street at least three dogs have been sprayed.”

Typically in the morning, Ray lets her dogs out to use the bathroom. But they keep ending up in confrontations with skunks, so now, she has to check the yard and walk around before letting them outside. One dog has been sprayed twice. Both were sprayed a week ago in the most recent incident.

She described how she tried several products and home remedies to get rid of the smell. It took a couple weeks, several baths, and the pups sleeping in the garage before they were OK again.

Sarah Armes, who lives just up the street from Ray, said her dog was also sprayed by a skunk while being let out in the backyard. She said several neighbors have been finding skunks or raccoons walking through their backyards, sleeping under sheds, digging under fences, and making their homes in window wells.

Armes called West Jordan Animal Control, but she indicated they told her wild animals don’t fall under the jurisdiction of animal control.

“They won’t do anything for skunks or raccoons,” Armes said. “So a private pest control said they’d come out for about $300 and trap like one skunk.”

That cost could add up to quite a bill, depending on how many animals are trapped. But Armes worries they’ll just keep coming.

“Meanwhile, they’re literally reproducing, and there’s families of skunks walking down the street,” Armes said.

West Jordan City Director of Public Information Tauni Barker explained that their animal control and services division is set up to take care of domesticated animals and address issues with ordinances.

Wildlife animals are a different issue, she said.

However, the city plans to look at how to address nuisance animals like raccoons and skunks, Barker added.

“The city is looking into different options to contract with wildlife resources to come and manage those in the city for us,” she said.

That can be tricky, she continued, because a contract would cost a lot of money.

Barker expects the city council to start discussions on the matter in mid-October.

One component to the issue both Barker and neighbors said is making things worse: People leaving out cat food for stray or feral cats.

A plastic container was discovered near the splash pad, in the bushes of a dry creek bed. Cat food filled one side, while hours-old milk that developed a film on the top filled the other.

“Bless their hearts. They think they’re doing a wonderful service for the city and for their neighbors, and in fact, they are attracting these raccoons and skunks right into the neighborhoods,” Barker said.

Not only is Ray hoping that’ll stop, she wants to see the city take action.

“Please just stop,” she pleaded to the people worsening the nuisance animal situation. “Just let us have our yards back.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

The Ogden George Eccles Dinosaur Park is expanding, but in doing so is affecting surrounding organi...

Mike Anderson

Ogden’s dinosaur park to expand, creating challenges for other nearby organizations

The Ogden George Eccles Dinosaur Park is expanding, but in doing so is affecting surrounding organizations. How is Ogden is managing the shuffle?

1 minute ago

Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley takes a question from an audience member during a tow...

Bridger Beal-Cvetko, KSL.com

Nikki Haley to visit Utah next week ahead of Super Tuesday presidential caucus votes

Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley will visit Utah next Wednesday, ahead of the state's GOP presidential preference poll during caucus meetings on Super Tuesday.

31 minutes ago

Utah Capitol building...

Bridger Beal-Cvetko, KSL.com and Lindsay Aerts, KSL-TV

Bill to ‘simplify’ lawsuit over Utah’s abortion trigger ban passes House committee

The Utah legislature is advancing a bill that would undo the law that banned Utah's abortion clinics from getting licenses. That law is currently on hold anyway while it's tied up in a lawsuit.

41 minutes ago

A new program started by Intermountain Health will allow any police K-9 injured in the line of duty...

Alex Cabrero

New Life Flight program will fly police dogs injured in the line of duty

A new program by Intermountain Health will allow for any police K-9 injured in the line of duty to be flown by Life Flight to receive medical treatment.

1 hour ago

A rendering of the Provo temple after announced renovations, which will be called the Utah Rock Can...

Emily Ashcraft, KSL.com

Church of Jesus Christ announces name change for Provo temple

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Tuesday that the temple serving BYU students and missionaries at the Provo Utah Missionary Training Center, along with other members, will be renamed as part of its reconstruction.

3 hours ago

Fire crews at the garage fire attacking potential hot spots. (KSL TV)...

Michael Houck

Sandy garage burns down after fire, no injuries reported

Fire crews responded to a second-alarm fire call at an attached garage in Sandy Tuesday morning. 

3 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

West Jordan neighborhood at wit’s end over ‘infestation’ of skunks, raccoons