Monday, March 28, 2011

Raccoon Wars End with Cease Fire

In the previous blog, I related the tale of the fearless raccoon where the little critter was last seen going under my porch. How many raccoons or other forms of wildlife were under there with it was unknown. The live trap, baited with dog food, was undisturbed. I tried Friskies Seafood Buffet. The next morning, the trap was sprung; the door firmly in place, the buffet platter clean as a whistle, but no raccoon. ????

If I had known about the blog Straight From the Padded Cell , I would have used Twinkies as bait. Yes, Twinkies. Seems raccoons love Twinkies. Who knew?

That afternoon, I am driving across town when the cell phone rings. It’s the Missus.

“That raccoon is in the backyard again and my dog is out there barking at it.”

This was not good as I suspected the critter might be diseased, possibly rabies. The dog was up to date on his shots but…

The Missus went on to say that at one point, the raccoon had rolled over on its back like a playful puppy before disappearing back to its new prime real estate under my porch. Strange. Was it someone’s pet? Was it the plaything of some poor sickly child somewhere, escaped from its cage, and lost? Was there a little girl crying herself to sleep every night, calling out for her beloved Ricky Raccoon?

I decided to seek expert advice. Not living within the city limits, I called the County Sheriff’s office. No, they did have an animal control department. No, they did not have anyone to deal with it. The dispatcher did put me in touch with the game warden but he was out of town and would be for three days.

“Do you have a gun?” the game warden asks. I did.

“If you shoot it, burn the body,” he says, “so that no other animal will scavenge it and become infected.”
Uh, okay.

The raccoon wars had taken an ugly turn.

Two hours later, the raccoon reappears. Decision time. I grab my firearm and ease outside. The animal sees me but instead of running off, it turned and…fell over. That was the clincher. The littler critter had serious health problems, not sure what, but shooting it seemed like the merciful thing to do.

As for following the game warden’s advice to burn the body, that idea was rejected. The land around me is as dry as the proverbial tinder box with highly flammable dead leaves in all directions. I found another solution but that will remain untold.

I just hope the raccoon wasn’t named Ricky.

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