Thursday, November 6, 2008

Stupid Raccoons!

First for an update on Hostile Armenian Dude... As I said in my previous post, our local Animal Control office wouldn't let me make a complaint because I personally didn't witness him abusing his dog. But... thanks to my friend Julie and her referral of the ASPCA website, I was able to submit an anonymous complaint with Hostile Armenian Dude's address. Let's hope the ASPCA can do something about it.

Ok... on to the stupid raccoons. Every now and again, stealthy nighttime raccoons will get into our large container of cat food. You know, the one with the screw-on lid that is supposed to be animal-proof.

Yeah well, in the couple of years that we've had that food container, the raccoons have successfully broken into it three times. Each time, they've rolled the container off the patio and into the middle of the yard, and screwed off the lid to access the cat food.

Well, the other morning when I got up, I saw that the raccoons had gotten into the cat food again. The container was on its side in the middle of the backyard, lid off and cat food spilling out of it. One of our backyard bunnies (Fang) was lounging in the grass a few feet away.

I immediately went out and cleaned the cat food up. Much later in the day, I was walking past the living room window when I noticed that Fang was still in the same spot. But upon closer inspection, I saw that he had moved on to Bunny Heaven. Poor Fang. I went outside to get a closer look. It looked like it had just happened. He was definitely alive (though obviously not well) when I went to clean up the food. The other bunnies and our kitty hadn't noticed yet.

I couldn't for the life of me figure out why he died so suddenly when he was totally fine the day before. There were no obvious wounds or injuries on him. And then I remembered the raccoons and the spilled cat food. Remember my one carnivore bunny that was always eating the cat food?

Yes... this bunny. (Spike)

Well, shortly after we shot that video, I went online to find out what happens when bunnies eat cat food. One of the veterinary sites said that some bunnies will drop dead within 24 hours of consuming cat food. That's when we decided to start feeding our outside kitty up on top of the patio table where the bunnies couldn't reach. (even though our freaky carnivore bunny Spike had been eating cat food daily for months)

And now I'm thinking that Fang must have eaten a bunch of the cat food the raccoons spilled in our backyard. And unlike Spike, Fang must have been one of those bunnies who couldn't handle eating cat food. Stupid raccoons. We hadn't had Fang very long, so I didn't get the chance to really bond with him. Other than to enjoy watching him hoppity hop around the backyard through my living room window.

But now he was dead. And though I really, really love animals (except for dogs)... I don't really like dead animals. And I definitely don't touch dead animals. Well... except for the frozen mice in my freezer. But I don't really think of them as dead so much. I think of them more like tasty treats for my snakes. I buy them online and they come frozen. So I can pretend that they grow that way on trees. But animals that are running around one day and die the next.... I can't touch them. Not even the 15 year old love-of-my-life kitty. When he went on to Kitty Heaven, I stayed at his side and bawled my eyes out. But I didn't touch him. It's just a thing I have about dead animals.

Anyway, so this dead bunny that I never bonded with... what to do with him? Marshall wasn't going to be home from work for several hours. What were my options, other than just leaving him there for Marshall to deal with later?

It's against the law here to bury an animal in your backyard, so we reserve law-breaking-animal-burying only for the pets that we really love. (sorry Fang) I ultimately decided to call "Dead Animal Pickup" who instructed us to leave him in a trash bag on the curb in front of our house for an 8am pick-up the next morning. So, like a kind and considerate wife, I left the bagging job for Marshall to do when he came home from work.

But I'd be lying if I didn't briefly consider getting a shovel and catapulting him over the fence into Hostile Armenian Dude's backyard. Then I could say, "The Hostile Armenian Dude killed my bunny!!!!"

It's probably a good thing I don't always follow my impulses.


  1. I can't decide if I want to laugh or cry.... poor Fang! I have to think about this for a bit!!

  2. Oh no! That's horrible! Poor Fang :/
    I'm totally with you on that whole "no dead animals" thing. This one time, I left a dead salamander covered with my sewing machine cover all day, waiting for Josh to get home and take care of it for me.
    Anyway... I would have supported framing the Hostile Armenian Dude for Fang's murder. Next time, I say go with your gut ;)

  3. We should at least have a moment of silence for poor Fang! Ok, now may he rest in peace :) Time to shop?


  4. RIP Fang. Sorry to hear this. As someone who has had to scream "Drop it" to my dog on several baby possum catching and killing occasions, I can relate. I can actually use a shovel to throw one out, but that has taken several years. Thanks for making a complaint about your nasty neighbor. I had been racking my brain looking for a animal safety terrorist to no avail.
    Also, my dogs have eaten through that same food container SEVERAL times.

  5. First of all, the whole "mice in my freezer" thing is . . . . um - a little freaky!

    Secondly, poor, poor Fang - that is so sad!

  6. ahh poor fang. :(
    i think i would have done the toss the bunny into hostile dude's territory..maybe it's safer to do an anonymous complaint though..
    I used to think racoons were cute til they slaughtered my poor guinea pig.

  7. Yeah, I prefer live animals to dead ones too. You kinda freaked me out a little when you said you have mice in your freezer, but I get it now. I don't suppose you mail order gourmet cock roaches for your snakes like my son does. Funny how he can't make rent or feed himself but his snakes eat imported roaches.

  8. oh my goodness the drama going on over there... all that and being sick too, that is a good excuse to have Marshall do it...

  9. Oh I am sorry for Fang. I hope the kids are okay. We had a duck to get killed and when we put him in the trash bag we had a whole flock of vultures the next day in our trees looking for the smell. It was during the summer.

    It was creepy!

  10. RIP Fang. Ate himself to death.

    I get you on the dead animal thing. Freaks me out (except for the dead animals I eat, of course - got what a savage I am).

    Good for you for filing a complaint with the ASPCA.

  11. Poor Fang. I had no idea that cat food would be bad for bunnies. Is it just me or is it weird that you'll have a dead bunny in a bag on your curb all night?

  12. I think I'm a little more freaked out by the dead mice... and the snake that eats them. I had a dead duck once and the same rules applied in NY -- we had to bring it for disposal AND THEY MADE US PAY! I should have made duck soup.

  13. I know this story was about Fang and I'm very sorry to hear about him. But. What the crap? You got frozen mice in your freezer? OMG! Never. Never. Never. We will never have a snake or anything that means I have to store frozen mice next to my Haagen Dazs.

  14. Sorry for you loss!!!!!!!

    but HASHAHAHAHAHAH about the thought to toss it in Angry Armenian Dudes yard! LOL

  15. Sorry about your bunny! We don't have any raccoon problems here but the squirrels have broken into my house TWICE. Nasty freakers.

  16. Poor Fang.

    And I agree with the others about mice in the freezer....YUCK, ICK, GROSS! I had to deal with a mouse in my house this past summer and I think I had a mini heart attack because of it!

  17. I have got to admit that I have a bit of Fang in me, it is a real possibility I will gorge myself to death. Gosh, I hope it is an easier job to figure out what to do with me afterwards though....
    Sorry for your loss. I hope you will find a new bunny soon.

  18. Awww poor Fang. RIP in the bunny heaven.

    stupid raccoons, they get into my trash all the time, apparently they have nothing better to do at 3 AM.

  19. I was going along until "mice in the fridge" then you totally lost me. I can only picture a bag of frozen mice at this point. Poor Fang..overshadowed by dead mice.

    May he rest in peace.

  20. Wow. I had no idea that cat food could do that. I guess we're lucky that when we had bunnies they never ate the cats' food! Poor Fang!

    And I HATE stupid smart raccoons. That's really quite ingenious.

  21. Ohhh, he was a cutey. :( But these days I barely have patience for live animals, let alone dead ones! Yes, and totally a husband job.

  22. Sad news my friend. Although I am sure the general population will find that you did the right thing, don't you think you would have bonded a teeny tiny bit with Fang as you launched him over the fence?

    Raccoons do go away if you have big dogs. (Even if said big dogs need to be periodically turned to avoid sores.) So do moles and smart squirrels. Not smart squirrels now sport the bobbed tail look.

  23. So sorry about your bunny. I can't deal with dead animals either. Matt had a dog who died shortly before Emily was born. Of course, she died when Matt was out of town one week, so I called our neighbor who very nicely came over to take care of it for me.

  24. So sorry 'bout Fang. Maybe the little "purple" package I'm sending will ease your pain (it's my DAWG wrapped up with a purple ribbon :-) I know, I know: you *say* you don't like dogs. But I'm sure you'll LOVE my dog. And he's black just like Fang. So he'll cheer you all right up. wink wink!!)

    Sorry also for my late commenting. It's possible that yesterday I wasn't very good spreading around the blog love (or cleaning, or teaching, or cooking ...) because I was busy, perhaps, reading a certain book...

  25. What a very strange law -- why aren't you allowed to bury dead anials in your backyard? Poor Fang. (And thank-you for your visit to Italy on election day - I really appreciated your kind comment).

  26. Oh, poor Fang.

    Yeah, I got sidetracked at the mice in the freezer, too. But I laughed at the "I can pretend that they grow that way on trees"!!! HA!

  27. Poor Fang! at least he died happy and full :) We recently lost a cat too and it sure is sad when they die. I hope Fang is happy in bunny heaven.

    Btw, I hopped on over here from BATW! glad to be here.

  28. I'm so sorry about Fang. You know, our bunnies eat EVERYTHING. I better have my girls really check into what their letting them snack on. They think it's hilarious that they like candy and things like Cinamon Toast Crunch. (They only give them tastes here and there.) It is because of your bunnies that my girls keep pestering me to make a "bunny" post on our family blog. Maybe I better get going on that. Thank goodness we don't have to worry about them eating cat food.

  29. I love that you live in a world where there are frozen mice trees. I wonder what else grows on trees in your world :-)

    And right now my husband is "playing" with our kitties - with a remote control mouse. That they are afraid of. They are such good mousers...

  30. I'm glad you solved the mysterious death of Fang. Poor little guy can now move on.. You wouldn't want ghost bunnies in your yard, now would you? Hey, now that I think about it, that could be kinda cool...

    Spike can eat catfood because he's Spike .. he knows that in another life he was a sexy vampire, and no stinking cat food is gonna kill him. Nancy boy vamps, on the other hand, should probably stay far, far away...