Thursday, October 15, 2009

Is this hell? Or karma?

I've had a hell of a week with what some may call critters; I call them wild animals.

Let's start from the beginning.

Let me preface this by saying, we do not live in the country. We live in a tract. We do not have sprawling yards.

So why the fuck do I have six raccoons hanging out in my back yard? We have a small deck area flush with the ground with a piece of wood one might call a bench. The raccoon family call this shelter. I call it hell. Contrary to what Disney will lead you to believe, these are not fun, furry animals that burst into song and have birds flying gleefully around them. They are menacing, disease-ridden animals that attack 74 year old women and maul them nearly to death. Get off of me PETA - you want these raccoons, you're welcome to them.
I want them gone. So I have done the following:
  • Had a stare off, Chris called it a draw
  • Yelled "get on, now!" and then thought, when did I turn into Jed from the Beverly Hillbillies and/or a 75 year old man.
  • Talked about it incessantly to anyone who would listen.
  • Called my neighbor when I saw them to warn her hoping we could commiserate about the invasion, but they have dogs so they don't bother them and we're just stuck with the damn raccoons ourselves.
  • Read that they hate the smell of humans, so I put three socks out in their preferred area (I had just done laundry and it's all I had to put out there, and no, I don't know where the 4th sock went but this is proof the washer/dryer doesn't eat socks, sometimes they disappear before they even get to the laundry.) Anyway, at one point all the socks were missing and I expected the mama raccoon to knock on our window wearing 3 socks and inquiring where the 4th might be. That didn't happen, but mysteriously the socks reappeared in the same spot where I had put them in the first place. I believe they used one as a pillow. The socks are still out there.
  • Sealed up the two foundation vents we have that had small holes due to the a/c lines. Then, the very next day noticed a 2 inch hole gnawed into a perfectly in tact vent. Fuck.
  • Panicked that the raccoons would nest in our chimney, drop down into our fireplace, open the fireplace doors, walk into Sabrina's room and maul her.
  • Tied the fireplace doors shut and duct taped them. Then asked Chris is the flue was shut and perhaps that would stop them from entering the house and killing us all in our sleep. Note this was after the duct tape had been applied. Chris made a big sighing noise, removed all of the rope and duct tape and assured me the flue was shut.
  • Called my dad to find out if the flue would indeed keep the raccoons out of the house. He assured me it would, but at the same time he questioned them getting in the fireplace at all, and since everybody knows that is like their 2nd favorite nesting spot and he clearly wasn't aware of this fact, I questioned whether or not he really knew if the flue would keep the raccoons out of the house and continued to panic on the inside.
  • Called some wildlife exclusion people who deal with this shit for a living (?) and was told my best option right now would be predator poop. Honestly, she said poop. I said, "poop?" and she said yes, poop. I had read that coyote urine was a detractor and she said, "well, coyote urine is synthetic so it doesn't always work. We have actual coyote and mountain lion poop. You sprinkle it around the perimeter of your yard and the raccoons will think there are coyotes and mountain lions near by and they will steer clear of your yard. It's $25 for 2lbs."
  • I am buying shit tomorrow.
With the rain came the ants. As if I needed something else to deal with. Ants pouring out of those little holes in the sink (what are those holes for besides ant entrances, anyway)? Most concerning is there are some really big ass black ants mixed in with the regular ants, so I think we now have carpenter ants which is really..... Fuck. I want them gone as well, so since the discovery, I have done the following:
  • Panicked
  • Sobbed a little bit
  • Upon the discovery of the ants, realized we have nothing in terms of ant or bug repellents, and since I just love the smell of my non-toxic household cleaners we don't even have a little 409 to spray at the assholes. So we sprayed cucumber multi-purpose cleaner which eventually dazed them enough that we could get rid of some of them. At least they left this world smelling good.
  • Once we got the holes clear enough, I then duct taped the holes shut, and duct taped the drain in case they decided to come out of there.
  • Then I slathered Vaseline over every single crevice they possibly could escape from since one time someone told me that worked.
  • The vanity is so covered in Vaseline that I think the counter might slide right off if you put any pressure on it.
  • My parents bought me some ant spray and trap thingies so I wouldn't have to go to the hardware store for the 4th time this week.
  • I've sprayed the living shit out of the sink and drain, the trails I found outside and put ant stakes out.
  • I re-duct-taped everything because frankly, I don't believe they're gone and I just can't deal with a sink full of ants right now. I'm not too emotionally stable at this moment.
This morning, per my now normal ritual, I drew back the drapes to check and see if the raccoons were in their normal spot (they weren't!), and to see how my ant traps were doing (they're doing well, thanks for asking). Then, I see something scurry quickly by.

A rat. A motherfucking rat.

Now we know what chewed through the foundation vent.

Since discovering the rat, I have:

  • Called pest control.

I am done with this shit.


Brakes and Gas said...

I totally have the heebeejeebies from reading this post. I gagged a little at the thought of rats. Ugh.

Missy said...

You poor thing! I thought things were bad here with a dead possum in our yard!

Aunt Becky said...

I have it on good authority that those ant things they advertise on TV work (rid-x? maybe)(stupid Topamax brain ruining my memory).

I'm gonna get some next year. We get ants and they're NASTY.

And raccoons and opossums. No rats tho. *shudders*

Kendra said...

That's a lot of critters! Hey, before you buy the poop (or, if you haven't already, or when you need more!), ask the neighbors for some dog droppings. With our two dogs, you can figure what our trash can smells like on pickup day. Our neighbors' cans get knocked over by racoons almost every week, while ours is untouched. I figure we have the dogs to thank.

Stay safe out there! ;)

minivan soapbox said...

Ewwwwww Sweetie! You're sure it's a rat...not a mouse? Good job calling the pest folks though! I have groundhogs...I'll count my blessings.

janessa said...

I can commiserate :(
I hope you have better luck than we've had on the pest front!

Lattes and Xanax said...

You're welcome to my dogs' shit, anytime, my friend!

Jen Pritchard said...

Try an electric fence for the raccoons. We had major issues with them in our back yard and this seemed to remedy the problem. Just remember to turn it off during the day so no one gets hurt...