Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Grits & the Wild Creature


Grits was a very gentle dog, and especially loved children. He loved babies of all kinds. He was also very protective and territorial, making the rounds of our fenced-in yard regularly. More than once he chased people away from our cars and garage, preventing theft and vandalism.

Occasionally Grits would have a run-in with an animal, whether it was another dog who challenged him or a wild creature who invaded his yard. He was the master of his domain.

Late one summer night, we heard Grits barking frantically. There was bumping against the house and a lot wild creature sounds. We ran outside with flashlights to find that Grits had cornered a raccoon in the bushes next to the house. This was not his first, nor his last, raccoon encounter. We were able to distract him long enough for the huge raccoon to make it out of the bushes and over the fence. Grits was furious, but unharmed. We weren’t sure about the raccoon; he was gone.

Early one morning shortly thereafter, we again heard a ruckus in the bushes. It was still dark outside, so we grabbed flashlights and ran to assist both Grits and the presumed raccoon. We did not want anyone hurt.

When we got outside, Grits seemed extremely agitated and concerned. He was almost frantic, but this time we couldn’t see the other animal. We could hear hissing and growling, though. Figuring it was wedged under the bushes, we needed to be extra careful. Bill tried to scare it out. He shook the bushes with a rake, to no avail.

Next he grabbed the garden hose; he was going to “flush” it out, he said. He turned on the water, and pointed the hose to the area where the sounds were coming from. The growling stopped; then we heard rustling in the bushes. I was now able to shine the flashlight into the area of movement.

There sat a drenched little baby raccoon. The poor little thing was shivering, and very angry. By this time, Grits was inconsolable. We realized that he wanted to save this baby, but the baby was not cooperating. He was crying and howling, while trying to get into the bushes. I had a hard time holding onto him, as Bill focused on the baby raccoon.

Bill parted the bushes as far as he could with the rake. Very gently, he scooped up the raccoon cub. He was so small that he easily fit onto the rake. Thankfully, the little guy clung to it, all the while cussing Bill and Grits a blue streak.

As Grits and I moved away, Bill lifted the little guy over the chain-link fence, sliding him onto the ground as far from the fence as possible. The cub seemed okay, just upset by the entire incident. Grits however immediately ran to the fence, still crying under his breath. Seeing the raccoon, he wagged his tail and proceeded to lie down next to the fence. He would not move. Concerned, he chose to keep his eyes on his little friend. 

For the next two hours, they stayed that way. I watched to make sure both were okay. I did not want a mother raccoon to appear and threaten Grits. I was also worried about the drenched raccoon cub. Just before sunrise, I noticed the cub was gone. Grits was finally ready to come inside. He had done his job. 

Grits with Sam, one of his cats

Story & Pictures: McGuffy Ann Morris

Linked to: Two Shoes Tuesday
Word Prompts: Creature & Wild 

48 comments:

  1. What a sweet dog. Our dog wouldn't have been so kind, regardless of the age of the "intruder".

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    1. Grits was very sweet, unless you were up to no good. He had a good sense of that, and a "no tolerance" policy.

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  2. ohhhh.... What a great dog! Im not so sure skip would be as kind either...he prides himself on his bear barking skills...he always stops the chase of small animals though if he senses he is catching up...

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    1. Grits loved most people and animals, but had a keen sense of judgement.

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  3. Clearly the love and care you gave Grits was an example for him to follow. This is a beautiful post.

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    1. Thank you for this; you made me teary.

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    1. Beth, you are right. Grits was a hero.

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  5. Animal stories are just the best - they never cease to amaze me with their caring instincts. This story put it beautifully.

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    1. Thank you. I hope to share more of my critters.

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  6. sounds like a great country dog. :)

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    1. He was, at that. Bill called him his "hillbilly fighting dog", because he would never start a fight, but would finish one. Grits was wonderful. Thanks.

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  7. Oh, Grit's such a brave heart!:)

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  8. This really is a very beautiful and touching write. Made my heart feel good.

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    1. Mary, that means a lot to me. I am glad this made you feel that way. Thanks.

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  9. Oh! What a beautiful, heart-melting story, Annie! It doesn't surprise me one bit that Grits wanted to rescue this little raccoon, after all, he lived in family that loved all creatures and took them in! I have such a sweet image in my mind of them sharing time on the two sides of your fence before they parted ways! This is one of those critter stories that shows us that animals are endowed with spirit, thank you so much for sharing Grit's "tail" for TST, what a wonderful dog he was! I love that photo of him with Sam :-)

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    1. It was an amazing thing to watch, Josie. Grits was such a great protector. Thank you for your kind words.

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  10. Amazing how much they understand, isn't it?

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    1. Animals just get it. They know what and who is important, and why.

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  11. Good for Grits and for you and Bill too. Do you know what became of the baby? Did you see it again? I am sure his departure was appropriate or Grits would have let the world know. Great story, McGuffy ...

    Andrea

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    1. No, we never saw the raccoon as a cub again. There were many in the area, though. I am sure it went off on its own, or Grits would have sounded the alarm. Thanks.

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  12. Wow - when Grits was dealing with an adult raccoon, he acted like a normal dog. But when he was confronted by a baby raccoon, his heart just melted. How sweet is that? What a great dog!

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    1. Grits was a good old boy. He loved babies and was very protective.

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  13. What a sweet, protective, boy! I loved every word of your story. I cracked up when I read that the baby coon was cussing a blue streak! Love that expression! Great post.

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    1. Thanks, Joell. It really was cussing a blue streak! I laughed, too! Thanks!

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  14. Wow...that is an amazing story...grits sounded wonderful!

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  15. What a heart warming storey. Grits is truly a protective dog.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Hugs,
    JB

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    1. Julia, thank you. Grits was one of a kind. We still miss him.

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  16. I love animal stories. Bless sweet Grits!

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    1. Thanks, Beth. I hope to share more of my critters.

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  17. Grits was earning his keep. What a delightful post.

    Have a terrific day. ☺

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    1. Yes, Grits did earn his keep. He was always alert and took care of business.

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  18. Oh what a wonderful story. I love animal stories and they never cease to amaze me. Grits is a wonderful dog.

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    1. Thank you. Animals always amaze me, too.

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  19. :) Grits is a nice dog. Since he is so caring have you thought of having him and you become a pet therapy team?

    Our beagle dog, Adi, and I were a registered pet therapy team. Adi was a reading dog with the children and also we visited in an assisted living home. They residents loved her, especially the Alzheimer's patients.
    ..

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    1. Grits is over on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge, for many years now. I am considering it for Stella, though. She would be wonderful. Thanks, Mr. Jim.

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  20. Replies
    1. Thank you. I am glad you liked this story. I plan to share more!

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  21. What a story. Happy that ut ended well:)

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  22. Great story! That reminds me of when we tried to save a stray kitten from a bunch of bandit raccoons, but that story didn't end so well...
    : )

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  23. Grits is my new hero. I so love him! I loved every single word of this heartwarming story. Bless that beautiful blonde angel!

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  24. What a great tale. We have had raccoons ever since we moved to VA. We have scared them on the deck many times. They can be very mean, and they scare me when they are around the kitties. I know the kitties would not have the same reaction as Grits did to that baby raccoon. What a sweet dog Grits was. Janet

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