He came in from the backyard with his nose so close to the ground he resembled an anteater. Turning the corner sharply he entered the family room and went straight to the fireplace. Although not as crazy as cats, dogs have their own idiosyncrasies so I didn’t think too much about it. As early morning turned into mid morning my wife was getting ready for work, in a hurry as usual. I was in the process of looking for a job on-line. Spence again came into my office looking for attention. “Wanna go outside?” I asked.
He sat down by my side, looked at me, as if to say:”no, that’s not it, try again”
I was puzzled now.
My wife was rushing around, gave me a quick kiss and declared “got to go”
“Notice anything odd about Spence?” I’d say
Not wanting to make her late for work I’d say “I’ll take care of it”. She hastily went out the door. “OK” she said.
I made 2 eggs for breakfast for myself and I would always spoil my dog with a little piece of toast, occasionally. We could eat together that way.
Once again it was time for him to go out, and once again he came back in the same way as before. Head down to the carpet, directly to the left.This time he spent more time close to the fireplace. He was sniffing and looking intently. I never knew my dog to have a hunters look, but if there was one, this would be how it would look.
“That’s it!” I thought “There is something in the fireplace!”.
Through the glass doors I could see 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 just a little bit farther, there it was, 2 big eyes staring back at me. I quickly backed away and then “bam”, hit my head on the hard brick.
Articles on the internet suggested ways of getting 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 putting out ammonia soaked rags or moth balls. I tried them all and still the raccoon didn’t budge.
The next day I was resigned 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 the Varmint Police was one guy named Bill.
Bill was a rough-looking guy, but just the type of guy who could get rid of a raccoon stuck in a chimney.
On the way into the house I explained how the last 48 hours had been.
“I’ll get him” he said.”Need to get my cage from the truck”
Standing by the fireplace, waiting for Mr. Varmint Police to come back in seemed to last longer then the minute it did. Taking a long pole with a noose, he got on his knees and stood up in the cramped chimney opening. A loud “shit, he got me. #%**!” could be heard and then out of the fireplace opening came a mean, large, hissing,pregnant raccoon dangling from a noose, and Bill the bloody armed, exterminator.
He was released into the open-ended cage, trying to climb out as soon as he was put in. SLAM! the door shut. The raccoon was captured and taken to the truck.
I paid the Varmint Police his fee for arresting the critter and thanked him.
Not sure what happened to the raccoon but it taught me a couple of things.
You need to keep a chimney cap on the chimney, and a good dog in the house.