He came in from the backyard with his nose so close to the ground that he looked like an anteater. Turning the corner abruptly, he entered the family room and headed straight for the fireplace. Although they are not as crazy as cats, dogs have their own idiosyncrasies, so I did not think too much about it. When dawn turned to midmorning, my wife was getting ready for work, in as much of a hurry as usual. I was in the process of looking for work online. Spence reentered my office for attention. “Do you want to hang out?” I asked.
He sat next to me, looked at me as if to say, “no, it’s not like that, try again.”
Now he was puzzled.
My wife was running, she gave me a quick kiss and said “I have to go”.
“Did you notice anything strange about Spence?” I would say
Not wanting to make her be late for work, he would say “I’ll take care of it.” He hurried out the door. “Okay,” he said.
I made myself 2 eggs for breakfast and would always spoil my dog with some toast, every now and then. We could eat together that way.
Once again it was time for him to leave, and once again he returned in the same way as before. Head towards the carpet, directly to the left. He sniffed and stared intensely. I never knew my dog looked like a hunter, but if he did, he would.
“That’s!” I thought “There is something in the fireplace!”
Through the glass doors I could see that the insulation had fallen to the bottom. With the doors partially pushed out in the middle, it looked like something had tried to break the latch from the inside, so I opened the doors to take a look. Seeing nothing the first few feet up and then a little further, there it was, 2 big eyes staring at me. I quickly backed away and then “bam” I hit my head against the hard brick.
Articles on the internet suggested ways to get rid of raccoons, such as dropping a rope down the chimney to make it easier for them to get out, playing loud rock and roll, and pulling out ammonia-soaked rags or mothballs. I tried them all and still the raccoon didn’t budge.
The next day I resigned myself to the fact that the only way to get rid of the rodent was to call a professional. It was time for the Varmint Police.
It turned out that the Varmint police were a guy named Bill.
Bill was a tough-looking guy, but the kind of man who could get rid of a raccoon stuck in a chimney.
On the way home I explained what the last 48 hours had been like.
“I’ll bring it,” he said. “I need to get my cage out of the truck.”
Standing by the fireplace, waiting for Mr. Varmint’s police to return, it seemed to last longer than the minute it did. Taking a long stick with a rope, he got on his knees and stood in the narrow opening of the fireplace. A loud “shit, he got me. #% **!” it was heard and then, through the opening in the chimney, came a pregnant raccoon, large, hissing, hanging by a rope, and Bill, the exterminator armed with blood.
They dropped him into the open-ended cage, trying to get out as soon as they put him in. BLOW! the closed door. The raccoon was captured and taken to the truck.
I paid the Varmint police their fee for arresting the creature and thanked them.
I’m not sure what happened to the raccoon, but it did teach me a thing or two.
You need to have a chimney cap on the fireplace and a good dog in the house.