Monday, September 28

Urban creatures keep out!

This may be the Chinese Year of the Ox but at my house it was the summer of the raccoon. They love our neighborhood. They are not shy or easily scared off and are very smart. I once had a whole family living under there so normally it’s not a problem. They stayed out of the way and moved on but this one was- a teenager.This one decided to make a nest under my house. He knocked over the garbage and scared the neighborhood cats. He even thought he was bad enough to go after the house mate's dog. Big mistake.

I was sleeping with the bedroom window open when I was awakened in the middle of the night by the loud yelping of a dog and house mate yelling then a loud crash. I waited for my adrenaline rush to settle down before getting out of bed to see what happened. I found the house mate dabbing hydrogen peroxide on the hind quarters of the dog and dabbing some on his leg where a trickle of blood ran down.

“What the hell is going on?”

He explained that he had let Willie, the dog, out for a pee when the raccoon bit a chunk out of him - not a thing to do when anyone is doing their business- the house mate then tried to hit the the critter with a nearby shovel but missed and crashed through the back yard gate. I went out to find the said gate in pieces on the ground. I was really sorry woke up for this.

After that the house mate was out for blood. Nobody messes with his willie. He would prowl the yard with a very sharp machete, which I didn’t think was very practical.

“Maybe I should call animal control and see if they can handle this.” I suggested, dreading the carnage of a decapitated raccoon in my driveway.

It turns out that the city animal control doesn’t deal with wild animals. What? They only deal with domesticated animals. Wimps. I was advised to go to a pet supply store and get a live trap. Forget it, a live trap for this big, sneaky monster would have to be the size of a VW. I asked a friend who lives in the country how he handled them.

“I got one neighbor who feeds them and another who shoots them, It works out.” He shrugged. That was no help. He offered in a sincere tone I could bring it out to his property if I caught it.

“So you could shoot it?”

“Yeah.” he answered brightly with an evil grin.

Now I’m all for catching and releasing animals into the wild but with this beast, I was tempted to use a gun. The fourth of July was coming up so maybe the cops wouldn’t notice the illegal discharge of firearms in city limits but another heavily armed friend didn’t think it was a good idea either -too many things to hit by mistake. So the machete was replaced by a pellet gun and after numerous pot shots that missed the fat bastards rear end, I realized how right my well armed friend was.

After weeks of the house mate improving his aim on the beast, I managed to cover the portals to the underside of the house. The loss of room and board and a less stress free environment sent the unwanted house guest packing. Not before the little shit ate the grapes on the vine in my yard. Good riddance I say, the house mate was contemplating a grenade.

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