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Sunday, November 25, 2012

When the Hair on the Back of Your Neck Stands Up

You quit taking garbage to the road, now! I had dragged the garbage can to the road earlier in the evening. I had left it half full and had not carried out even one little thing because I knew I could pull no more. So, I was taking things to the road by hand at 2 am.

What was the noise?

I scanned the dark street and tried to see anything in the yard across the street, from where the noise seemed to come, maybe something approaching me. In a great haste, I strode off to the house as fast as I could limp. I figured I would fall if I tried to run.

yip yip yip yip and then again yip yip yip

Coyote? Bobcat? Wolf?

What do you think?

Maybe not a yip, but a repetitive noise. No, it was not a bird noise.

Even though I am in a neighborhood in the middle of town, there are patches of woods within a block, continuing to full woods within a half mile. Last year, my very credible neighbors said they saw several young coyotes within a half block of my house. I know there are bobcats in the woods and in the countryside. Wolves?

I have gone for walks at 2 am, 4 am, and I never had fear like this.  Now, I am afraid. Plus, the street lights, what few we have around here, all went out for some reason. Except for the dim light from the side of my house, it was as black as during the city-wide power outage. No one leaves a porch or house light on around here after 10 pm.

Now? I leave the house fearful. That is not a feeling I like. It is not a feeling that goes well with my own yard or the world. I hate living in fear of what is in the dark outside in the middle of the night. I suppose other people live in fear of their environment, but it is not my life until now.

But...yip yip yip...It frightens me.


  1. Sounds like coyotes to me.If you are scared get you some mace and take with you on your walks.That should deter any animals coming up on you or you on them.Just a thought.

    1. I had some mace I never used. It seems it goes away after awhile....hmmm. I thought coyote. Thanks. I only walk to the car, mailbox or hens' pen now. When I take walks again some day,I definitely will carry protection.

  2. Beau raised a ruckus in the middle of the day and there was a coyote in our yard! Supposedly they never travel during the day and a lone coyote is usually ill.

    Last night, Stud let Beau into the yard to pee and he literally stood guard over our white "rabbit" when the howls grew intense. We live in Florida! We would hear coyotes in the distance in Indiana, but here they're within a block area. eerie sounds, huh.

    1. lotta joy,
      That is scary.Middle of the day coyotes in the yard would frighten me. Ill animals don't obey the wild animal rules we depend on for our safety. You have a white rabbit? I would think "no coyotes" in FL and closer one in IA.

  3. flashlite? gun? whistle?

  4. Hmmm, I still would not feel safe. I have no gun and can barely carry what I need, so carrying anything I need, so the flashlight is a good idea, but totally impractical right now. If I swallow the whistle, I will be annoyed. Firing a gun in the city will get me in trouble. All good ideas. Thanks. I never even thought of any of these. If it is rabid....

    I am still rattled.

  5. Oh Linda, I'm so sorry you are frightened. Although I'm pretty sure that a coyote or a bob cat aren't likely to attack a grown human. I'm not so sure about wolves but I have never heard of one attacking outside of a fairy tale or nursery rhyme.

    Where we often camp we have mountain lions ....They WILL attack so I understand your apprehension. Having that heebie-jeebies feeling is no fun!

    Have you heard of any animal to human encounters in your neighborhood? Have you given any thought to a little canister of pepper spray? We don't have guns either. At the camper door I have a canister of wasp spray. I bought it before I found out that using it for self defense was an urban legend! Oh well, if we ever have wasps I'm all set!

    I hear you have bigfoot sightings in in the south HaHa! (I say this as a joke)

    1. I heard raccoons will not attack. But, they do, even unprovoked. Anyway, it was unnerving.

      Thankfully, we have no mountain lions. One woman reported she saw a Bengal tiger--twice. That kept me indoors at dusk for a few months. I think she was on drugs.

      I still believe in wasp spray. Oven cleaner works better, but the target has to be close, unlike wasp spray. I believe that anything shot in the eyes by wasp spray would at least temporarily halt any agressor.

      Bigfoot? Not in the South. We have giant hog sightings. We have found a few of those, and they are truly large and very dangerous. I do think they are mostly in Georgia. Chupacabra is in TX. A few rabid Republicans are the only thing around here, though.

      No, no fun being terrorized. I am such a brave person but easily terrorized. I walk behind exbf when a dog is near. I circle him if dog moves near.

    2. I had forgotten about raccoons. When we lived in the mountains they terrorized my daughter (she hates them) They will open a screen door if it isn't latched tightly. They also killed all our ducks. We had opossums here a few years ago, they will stand their ground and hiss at you.

      A few of those rabid Republicans are out here too.

    3. Janet,
      You reminded me that I need to get a chain and lock for my hens' pen. So far, the possums have scuttered away. Your daughter and I share a hatred and fear of raccoons! There are few cats in the neighborhood. I have often wondered if animals have killed them.

  6. Linda, Foxes will also sometimes make such a noise. Trust your gut and stay safe. Foxes usually will not attack humans unless they are rabid. However, this year a large male directly challenged my son as he was walking to one of the buildings here. My son shot him because he had no choice.

  7. Jane,
    Thanks. I could not figure out what animal it was. Raccoons challenge me when I am out, not turning away at all. When a raccoon baby fell into the living room, the mother was growling at me and finally decided to come up into the open back door, despite four other people being in here and going in and out.

    Was the fox rabid? Does your son carry a gun with him when out of the house? That is a spooky story.

    I will be careful. My tactic with animals is not to run if they come at me and I cannot get away. I usually start stomping toward the animal, growl, scream, and throw up my hands. I have not tried that often with raccoons, because I think one would still bite me.

  8. Sounds like a fox to me, Linda. I'm guessing you don't have a dog? Ours was good at keeping the foxes away. Your idea of using wasp spray sounds sensible, though, as long as the wind isn't blowing the wrong way.

    1. Anon,
      Yes, taking measure of the wind is a good idea. No, I don't have a dog because I don't have a fence. Animals must be fenced or chained. I will not chain a dog and cannot afford the two short bits of fence I need to completely fence my yard. However, I do want a Border Collie.

    2. Border collie x lab was the dog we had. Great dog.

    3. A Lab would be my second choice, so a mix would be perfect.

  9. yotes, coons, bobcats, foxes and possums are the norm here. Screech owls will freak ya out in the dark! Cougars are the only thing that runs me off. Dont wanna be cougar poop. Wasp spray with that wicked concentrated stream of goo works on all those little critters for folks that can't carry and fire a pistol in town. Put yer mean face on Linda(grrr!), and git em!

  10. mmpaints,
    I have got the mean face and can growl. I just hope that scares them some. The wasp spray sounds like my best defense. You have cougars? Oh my! That would really frighten me. Have you come across a cougar? Thanks for the pep talk.

    I will have to pull up my big girl panties and brave them alone. At times like this I really hate being alone.


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