I am presently reeling from a horrific act of violence committed late the other night in my backyard, when my murderous dog caught a possum that had apparently been living under my deck. As a vegetarian, I wish to harm no creature, and my dog, as an extension of me, is similarly bound. True, I do not feed him vegetarian dog food, but the free-range chicken content of his puppy pellets does not justify the sport killing of our marsupial neighbors. Imaginary fiancé—who allegedly shares my vegetarian inclinations—does not agree with me on the sanctity of possum life, and was actually cheering on this carnage.
I arrived at the scene of the crime to find my 20 lbs dog under the deck, standing proudly over the mangled carcass of a 15 lb possum, and promptly flipped-the-shit-out. We dragged him away from his trophy, cleaned the rank under-the-deck filth from his fur, and put him in the house. He appeared to have no injuries, and there did not seem to be any blood from either animal on him. Since he was up to date with his rabies vaccine and heartworm/flea preventative, my concern turned back to the innocent victim.
Here is a mug shot of the pup-etrator, who is now grounded.
We returned to the deck to address the deceased (by which I mean I sent Ian to deal with the dead thing) only to find him sitting up looking back at us! Of course! Possums play dead. That is totally a real thing, and apparently it works. Because the only reason my murderous dog stopped killing it is that he thought he had finished killing it. So now we are looking at this poor startled creature who is going to have a hell of a bruising on his neck, looking back at us with sad, senescent eyes. They are actually really cute. So we got closer. And as we approached we notice some troubling behavior, like swaying and drooling, that did not seem to be dog-induced. Rabies. Shit.
We ran back into the house and immediately checked the dog again for any bite marks and hit the internets to find out what to do. Good news: possums are resistant to rabies. Bad news: we just got outsmarted by a possum. Apparently possums fake rabies symptoms to scare away humans. They are highly intelligent, they have opposable thumbs and prehensile tails, and their babies ride around on their mother’s backs in an epic display of cuteness overload. And the best part is that they eat rats, mice, and roaches. Meaning that all this time I thought terminex was actually doing something, it was a possum that was keeping my house free of rodents and giant scary bugs. We returned to the deck in an attempt to apologize to the possum, and to try to communicate that he was still welcome in our backyard, but he was gone. I don’t blame him.
So anyway, I should unwind a bit with some poker playing. Is anyone interested? RSVP. Though I have to warn you, I’m pretty sure I saw a rat under the deck give me the middle-finger salute this morning…