Tanuki Droppings: This Is What It Looks Like

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:55 pm

Originally from Asia, the raccoon dog is also native to our country. Often the animal belonging to the dogs is confused with raccoons. But even without seeing it directly, the raccoon dog can be easily recognized by its droppings.

To the point

  • despite great similarity, the raccoon dog is neither related to the marten nor to the raccoon
  • the excrements are easily recognizable by their twisted compact shape, about 8 to 10 centimeters long
  • there is a high risk of confusion with feces of other similar animals

What does the droppings look like?

Tanuki Droppings: This Is What It Looks Like


The droppings of the raccoon dog are very uniform in all animals and are characterized by these features:

  • strands about 8 to 10 centimeters long
  • thickness about 2 centimeters
  • strongly twisted form
  • very compact
  • very firm to lumpy consistency
  • often gray to black color


Note: The characteristics are very similar to those of the marten. The feces can be distinguished mainly by the size, which matches the greater corpulence of the marten.

Marderhund Kot

Where can marten droppings be found?
When sexually mature, tanuki form families consisting of a male, a female and the young. Together, these associations maintain scat and urine sites that are visited regularly. A solitary occurrence of feces argues against the presence of a family association.

Note: Juveniles live as solitary animals and migrate long distances in search of territory. Isolated droppings may therefore indicate young tanuki in transit. You should nevertheless keep an eye on this condition.

Frequently asked questions
Is marten droppings dangerous to humans?
The droppings themselves are completely harmless. However, Nyctereutes procyonoides is considered a carrier of the dog or fox tapeworm, so there is some danger from this.

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Can the animals be driven away by removing the droppings site?
If the location of a defecation site disturbs, for example in the garden, you can relocate it and thus accustom the animals to a new place to defecate. The very clean animals usually avoid setting up too many “toilets”.

How easy is it to identify the droppings of a raccoon dog?
Besides raccoon dogs, there are several other animals living in our country that have similar living and feeding habits. Therefore, the distinction from excrements of marten, badger or even raccoon is not easy. In most cases, further signs of colonization are necessary for a clear identification.

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  • James Jones

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