more than just another bike blog

Sunday, December 17, 2006

how do they do that?

My little dog is pretty quiet. She barks at the 13-year old decrepit poodle that can barely walk. And she barks at my one neighbor who walks humped overwith age. But she either ignores everyone else or really likes them.

Last night, at 1:00am, she got all excited about something. She started "knocking" at the slider onto my patio with such passion that I actually thought there might be a burgler. I turned on the patio light, expecting to see a masked man approaching my door. But there was no one on the patio, so I opened the door to let Julie out to satisfy her curiosity.

She immediately ran to the far corner of the patio and started trying to climb the wall, knocking over one of my potted plants in the process. The adjoining patio has been vacant for a couple of months, so I had no idea what she was in pursuit of. Then I looked up.

The mother of all raccoons was sitting perched on top of the wooden wall/fence just looking down at Julie. Then, another big-ass raccoon joined the first on top of the way. I was afraid they'd jump down and attack my puppy, so I screamed at her and when she wouldn't come I ran over and grabbed her and we ran inside and locked the door.

The two raccoons sat there, probably contemplating if there was something yummy on my patio, when up pops raccoon number three, just as big as the other two! Three raccoons perched together on the corner of a little tiny six-foot wooden fence. It was almost comical.

What to do? It's 1:00am? These little masked men were scary. What if they jumped down onto my patio and ate my niterider (sitting on my patio table)? Should I call security? Or animal control?

I did what every good blogger would do -- I grabbed my camera and started shooting pics. Apparently raccoon #3 was camera-shy, because he immediately crept back down the wall. But #1 and #2 smiled, posed, and soaked up the attention. After I got a bunch of photos, I decided I'd had enough and wanted to go back to bed. But I wanted the intruders gone. I clapped and growled and hissed -- no reaction. Then I banged one of the wooden patio chairs around and #2 crawled back down and out the door of the adjoining patio.

But raccoon #1 was having a challenge with this. The other two raccoons had squeezed out of the wider slats on the patio door, but raccoon #1 kept getting stuck. It was almost comical. He finally retreated to the far end of the patio, crawled down the wall (it's weird how they walk upside down on the walls like squirrels) and the three masked intruders rambled away to the far side of the courtyard.

This morning, Julie wanted to smell everything on the patio over and over again. I don't know if she remembers the raccoons, but she knows something is different in her little world.

But my real question is, how do dogs do that? She was snuggling in bed when suddenly she knew there was an intruder (or three) outside. Could she smell them? In the house? Did she hear them? Inquiring minds want to know.


At 12/17/2006 6:32 PM, Blogger X Bunny said...

our dog can hear us drive up about 500 feet away

At 12/18/2006 12:09 AM, Blogger Shawn Kielty said...

Nice! I think that your dog can also smell them.

At 12/18/2006 9:12 AM, Blogger lauren said...

we can't leave anything outside because of the racoons.

between them, the skunks, the cats, the deers and the teenagers.

At 12/18/2006 12:08 PM, Blogger bbElf (a.k.a. panda) said...

Raccoons are scary. Especially urban ones.

I'd guess the noise woke her up & then a change in smell piqued her interest.

At 12/20/2006 8:20 AM, Blogger marscat said...

when i lived in SF i'd wake up and find them in the kitchen. They'd come in the cat door.

first time it happened my roommate ran to the bathroom for something to throw at them.

she tossed a roll of toilet paper that bounced off them. they didn't budge.


Post a Comment

<< Home