Pulling my dogs off a raccoon first thing in the morning is no way to start a day.

What a way to start a day.  Nothing like coming home to a BANG!  Duke and Kohl located, cornered, and proceeded to attempt to rid the back garden of a raccoon this morning.  It was an awful sight, and it was an even more upsetting sound.  That poor critter.  I don’t know what it was doing in our yard, maybe it was already unwell, maybe it had come into our yard to create a safe winter den for itself.  Lord only knows!  I’ll never know why it was there in the first place, but I can assure you, the boys were determined that it wasn’t going to feel welcome, that’s for damn sure.

I’m so thankful that this one time, when it truly mattered, Kohl obeyed his commands.  When I told him to “get off it”, and grabbed him by his collar he actually listened, calmed down and backed away.  Well I should say stayed away after I threw him to the side.  Duke, not so much, not only did he not listen, but because he sleeps in his crate now, and collars are a chocking hazard he wasn’t wearing one; giving me nothing to grab a hold of him by.  So he, along with his already incredibly stubborn nature wanted to be the dog who won the prize of guarding his property by not releasing his hold on the raccoon.  My heart was racing, I couldn’t tell if either of them were seriously injured or what.  It was impossible to make sense as to what was happening between Duke’s growling, while he held on for dear life, and the raccoon’s screaming.

Finally I kicked Duke, multiple times, then put my foot down on the raccoon to keep it from trying to run away.  I knew I had to get them to stay still if I had a hope in hell of saving them both.  Duke still refused to let go of the poor animal, so I kicked him again.  This got his attention and for a hot second he released his bite on the raccoon which allowed the animal to turn over onto it’s legs and try to crawl away.  Duke lunged for him again, and this was when I took the opportunity to throw Duke off balance by grabbing him from around his lower abdomen lifting his hind legs off the ground causing him to look back at me.  Allowing the injured raccoon a chance to finally get away, and that’s when Kohl saw his opportunity to keep that from happening and lunged forward again.  I put my foot into his chest so fast and commanded him; “OFF!!!  GET IN THE HOUSE NOW!  NOW!!!!”

And for once in his life, during a high stress situation Kohl did what he was told, he turned on his heel and scampered up the stairs.  I dragged Duke to the edge of the stairs and shoved him up them.  Forcing him up every single step as he continued to look over his shoulder, panting, not yet done with his job of guarding the property.

Once inside, all of our hearts racing, and each of us short of breath, is when I noticed that Duke had two puncture marks, one above his left eye and one below.  Other than that, neither dog had wounds, and were not bleeding.  But good lord did they ever smell.  They smelled of dogs who had laid in animal urine and feces for weeks.  I wanted to throw up; 1) from the upset of the scene I just witnessed and 2) from the smell.

As I watched the injured raccoon stumble around the deck trying to work out how on earth it was going to ever make it’s way over our 7 foot fence, my heart ached for the poor thing.  Just looking for a place to stay warm on cold nights, thinking it had found its own slice of heaven, only to be woken up by the two maniacs I call pets.  As I waited for animal services to come and take it to be tested, and treated, I couldn’t help but wonder how on earth some people not only pay to go to dog fights, but they actually breed animals specifically to kill?  They stand around hooting and hollering watching two innocent animals as they attempt to kill one another for sport???  I can’t even stomach an accidental fight between my boys and another animal, never mind set it up on purpose for my own personal pleasure.  All of it got me thinking that in my humble opinion, people who do enjoy this as a “fun activity” should probably be put on some sort of watch list, because to get joy from the blatant suffering of any living critter just isn’t right.  Not from where I sit anyway.


  1. Now you have experienced first hand why I carry a snake gun around my property when tending the horses and working in the barns/storage sheds. In my experience, if a raccoon doesn’t immediately run away then it’s sick with something. They can be very aggressive when cornered. I don’t want my dogs getting into a fight with one and the only humane thing to do is shoot the poor thing. They do on occasion have rabies and I worry more about my getting a bite than the dogs…since they are vaccinated. Raccoons do carry lots of other diseases and, in an urban setting, they like to travel using storm drains/sewers.

  2. Wow I’m impressed at your fortitude & quick thinking! I probably would’ve joined in with the raccoon screaming. FYI “raccoons have rabies” is a huge overstatement but I’m sure you’ve had the boy checked/cleared. Sadly animal services don’t typically ‘treat’…they’d just put it down. Something like Toronto Wildlife Centre is what was needed if you wanted the lil guy saved.

  3. Boy oh boy what an experience! You were very brave to dive into the middle of that. Even loving pets get out of control when in a fight situation and can cause harm even to their loved ones. Thank goodness that didn’t happen to you. I pulled my cat out of fight when I was 16 and I still have the scar on my arm from her bite. And that was a while ago I am now 71. 🙂 But then again she Was a cat who have their own set of rules about loved ones. Not the unconditional love of dogs. but I digress. Anyone involved in dog fighting should be sent to prison and made to fight each other every day. No Gloves. And yes be on a watch list. They have no soul and don’t value life. Sorry for rambling.

  4. Oooh! I see his eye!! I’m sure I don’t have to tell you to take him to the vet’s. Raccoons have rabies. Since you don’t inoculate the dogs you should have him checked. I’m sorry if I’m stating the obvious. Just being a dog Mom is all! What a way to start your morning!! Good thing you work out! I hope Duke is ok. Great news that Kohl listened! That’s a tremendous step for him! Guess that dog rangler stay was worth it!

  5. Some raccoons can be very aggressive. A woman was attacked by a group of raccoons in Vancouver, I think. I don’t know if they can carry rabies. I always stay clear of them but the little ones are cute and, of course, it’s sad when any animal is hurt and suffering.

  6. You are one brave, cool under pressure person!
    Good boy to Kohl for obeying – Duke, well he appears to have a mind of his own! Hope all is well with his wounds.

  7. Do hope that you and the boys will be OK after this experience. Not a good way to start any day.

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