Dead Animal of the Day


I had to call the ‘animal disposal unit’ today.

Until last night, Fanny hadn’t proven to be the great hunter that Allie (the cat) had been.

Like I said though, that was until last night.

Fanny has a couple of “habits” that bug me:  she also barks at nothing (lack of intelligence being another thing that bugs me too I guess) and she licks a lot.

Example: My dad, was over here the other day and said he let her lick the back of his hand and timed it at 2 minutes. (Can’t imagine why I’m such a geek either)

Anyway, I digress.

She was barking last night and I went to get her. Well, she was outside barking at an acorn or something but there was a BIG dead rabbit on the doorway leading from the porch outside.

Lord.

I got her inside but realized that she’d have to go out another coupla times before the night was over.

Usually I just leave the back door open or closed just enough so her nose can open it, but obviously I didn’t want a rabbit carcass presented on my  living room floor, so I had to firmly close the door each time I let her out and check every once in a while.

Not a problem when you’ve got a chew toy waiting for you though. Blood…mmmm

Anyway, called the ‘animal disposal unit’ when I woke up this morning today. Let’s just say there was a lot less to retrieve.

Once again it was dad and the girls who comprised “the unit.” They had me bring Fanny inside, and as I shut the door I heard dad saying, “…and that’s the liver.”

I heard one of the girls going “ewwww” (but she was looking, so she’s already a better person than I). I made the mistake of opening the back door It was almost bagged and Fanny got out again.

The dad said something like “where else are they going to learn about real life?” and I told him are you effing kidding me I had plenty of “real life” without viewing innards of a dead rabbit, thank you very much.

“Well,” he says, “they won’t get to take apart and prepare a chicken because we’re vegetarian” to which I responded, “and I won’t either because I just think they’re gross and only buy the breasts.”

Don’t try to one up me buddy, just take the dead animal, ok? Not that I’m not appreciative – far from it – but if I could stand the disgustingness wanted to learn more about real life revel in my omnivorousness I would’ve taken care of the damn thing myself.

So they cheerfully bagged it and went on their merry way, saying “Remember us at the holidays.”

Again I bit my tongue, instead of saying “the last time ‘remembered you at the holidays’ nobody ever acknowledged it, not to mention actually saying thank you.”

Between the dead rabbit and my tongue-biting there is a lot of blood around here today.

no gloves – that’s a real man

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I have a math problem. And it’s a revolting math problem to boot: When do you count a dead m/vole as one dead m/vole and when do you count it as 1/2 a dead m/vole?

All that’s left on the back porch are, um, the innards. Yeahhh, I can’t wait to clean that up. Which is why I’m writing this instead…

Since, to my knowledge, there is no how – many – parts – of – a – mole/vole – count- as – an – entire – m/vole rule book (but tell me if there is one) I’m going to take the higher number and use it in the summer count (click on summer m/vole count category if you don’t know what I’m referring to).

I think I can justify counting it as one by pointing out that cleaning up bloody guts is way more disgusting than cleaning up “just” the carcass.

Plus, since I’m the only one I know of who’s doing the summer m/vole count, I think I can make up my own rules regardless.

God I don’t want to go out there.

I just want to know “Why?”

What makes a cat (that eats an animal’s head and tail) “just say no” to its innards? Did he smell something icky in the innards that made him say “No, I don’t think I’m eating the innards tonight”?

Or was he just too full after eating the head, the tail, the arms and legs, skin, etc. and just decided to save the guts for later? No, that couldn’t be: it was Bubba. He’s never met a food item he didn’t eat too much of.

If I were a conspiracy theorist/anthropomorphist I would say the cats are mad at me because I’m dog-sitting this w/end so they’re telling me they’re p.o.’d by leaving the guts behind because they know I hate gut cleanup duty the most.

But that implies they have a moral compass, which is clearly not the case, or they never would have put me in this position to begin with.

Plus, it was Bubba who did this. And come on — he’s just not smart enough to have a moral compass. He can barely find the litter box.

Therefore, I hereby count this as summer m/vole number 6. But I’d count it as 526 if grossness were a relevant factor.

Plus one=

5 this year

This time: I got to hear its last squeak before Allie brought it (dead) onto the porch and then totally ignored it.

I guess the thrill was in the catch. This is often the case in life, eh?

Yes, here you get not just dead animal stats but also philosophical musings. All for free — my gift to you.

You’re welcome.

Plus one=4 this year

I think this is a low count compared to past years, but

  • It’s been extremely rainy this year and
  • I’ve never really counted before so it is possible, although unlikely, that in past years I only had a few but it seemed like more. In fact, it’s so unlikely that I am crossing it off the list. The m/vole count is low due to all the rain.

Ra**its, on the other hand, gawd. Yesterday morning — I swear this is true — there were 2 rabbits walking down my sidewalk.

Not hopping, not scrambling, not scurrying over each other, but standing up and walking one behind the other, sauntering almost.

For the first time I almost wished for a couple more because it would’ve been a great photo. Granted, they are everywhere else so it’s not like I’m jonesing to see them or anything.

<ed. 6/19: bolded info. on this topic due to reader confusion — have had a couple of verbal comments too — and/or writer vagueness; Here’s the upshot: I have removed innumerable m/voles from my basement, back porch and house. This summer I decided to do a “summer m/vole count,”  much like the Audubon Society (?) does its annual (christmas?) bird count. Get it?>

Since there have only been 2 so far and I can still keep track of them, I’ve decided to write a post every time I get a m/vole* off my back porch this summer.

Well I won’t really “get them,” the cats will, but I will be lobbing them over the fence into the neighbor’s yard “getting them” off my back porch (and/or avoiding them), so I feel entitled to the need to document each disposal.

For some background : This is getting a little ridiculous.

You could also just click on the Dead Animal of the Day link on the right, and 98% of the time it’ll be about dead m/voles.

I understand this could get kinda boring for you, dear reader, but this blog is about me, after all, and it could be worse: I could use this blog to track my periods or every time I said the eff word or every weed I pull out of the weedpatch garden (which I don’t have enough time to actually pull, not to mention to document).

So think of this as a database with words. Heck, it’s better than that: It’s an interactive database you can leave comments on!

To to make it official: This weekend I lobbed removed #2.

In the unlikely event you need a reminder this is about the first one of the summer: Summer’s here even though it was 34 degrees the other day

*or any part thereof

Today we welcome one of the first signs of summer. Welcome it with me, won’t you?

For today on the back porch I found the first dead m/vole of the season.

Summer is here, cold weather be damned!

Although also a hawk, this is not what it looked like, but I can’t spend any more time looking for a picture of this damn bird.

not-this-small.jpg

Sittin’ here looking out the window on this gloomy day, when I see this big-a**ed bird preening itself high in a tree. It’s got a rust-colored belly, and being an adult – convert – bird – nerd (thank you Tom, though it was probably in my blood already due to my dad), I run and grab my bino’s and bird-nerd book.

Sure enough, I think it’s s a Skinner’s Hawk, relatively common in woodland areas (which I would not consider my area at all, but maybe it’s lost). Never heard of it before but it fits the description and behavior, namely the following…

Oops — it’s not preening itself: It’s picking apart a dead bird. I couldn’t (mercifully) see much, except feathers floating down periodically.

I do not live in the woods for godsake. I live in a ‘burb right next to the City. It just boggles my mind how many bizarre animals, dead and alive, I see around here. Not to mention where I usually see them, which I won’t get into except to say they’re usually inside my house…

Other than my sister Sarah, who had a bat infestation in her attic (I had one in my bedroom which was enough for me to have to get rabies shots — we always try to outdo each other) and a rotted, maggot-infested raccoon (squirrel maybe?) fall out of her chimney flue into her house releasing millions of maggots,

I just don’t know anyone else who has had all of these bizarre animal sightings / infestations.

Oh wait, I just remembered Brett at work, who smelled found a dead shrek or a shrew or a something in his ?basement ?garage. I don’t remember which, since clearly I have enough of my own traumas to deal with.

I remember my parents having a bird or 2 come out of the chimney when I was a kid, but seriously, do other people have these problems on the scale I seem to have them?

Is this another taboo subject nobody mentions but everyone has?

I’m starting to (albeit paranoically if that’s a word) feel picked upon by the universe for having rescued my animals and for creating a garden and putting up birdhouses and feeders.

This is my reward for engendering nature and wildlife?!

Sounds to me like it’s yet another illustration of — cliché alert — no good deed going unpunished.

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