This past weekend a mutilated bunny appeared in my backyard. I’m not sure if Rigby caught one of the many that hop through the neighborhood or if another animal – neighbor’s cat, coyote, hawk, raven – is to blame. Anyhow, the poor little bunny was torn and broken. I could barely even look at it. It gave me the heebie jeebies.
For Saturday night and all day Sunday I thought about ways to get it out of the backyard. But everything I came up with would make me have to look at it, which I couldn’t do.
I’ve never been as much of a chicken when it comes to bugs and spiders. Even though I whimper or scream the entire time, I am able to remove unwanted ones. When it comes to bigger animals like birds or mammals, well that’s where the line is drawn. Sitting near the mountains, my neighborhood is inundated with local wildlife, so this is not the first time I’ve had to deal with a dead animal. There were a few years when I first moved in that I was afraid I’d be called the “animal killer” for as much dead wildlife I had in the front and back yards. And I love animals!
Once there was a giant dead rat in the street in front of my house. Luckily, my friend Mike (who had to park right next to it) was over and graciously offered to remove it for me. I’ve also had various baby birds fall from their nests and many small rodents left scattered about. Between various guys I know and the gardeners, they were cleaned up as well without too much trouble on my part.
So this weekend, I could have called a friend to help, but I hate to call them for help with stupid stuff like this – things I’m physically capable of doing, but not mentally. I then remembered someone once telling me that the city’s animal control services that kind of thing. Before asking any friends, I waited through the weekend – not being able to put the dog in the yard – and called animal control on Monday morning, just to see what they’d say. The operator I spoke with took all my information and was very helpful. She said someone would be out by the end of the day. That was great. They would send out some man to clean it up, and I wouldn’t have to use one of my friend cards.
Mid afternoon, I heard the truck arrive and then the doorbell rang. I was relieved they had arrived. However, I was surprised when I opened the door and…they had sent a woman! That’s right, animal control sent a woman to clean up the dead bunny at the home of a woman who was too chicken to clean it up. My relief of having the thing removed was somewhat overpowered by my embarrassment for being too much of a baby to have taken care of it myself. It’s kind of hard to play the helpless-woman-thing with another woman.
I smiled politely the whole time and thanked her profusely. “I just couldn’t even look at it,” I kept saying. She nodded on her way out and said, “Ya, it’s pretty gross,” before she left. Which probably meant, “Next time put on your big-girl pants princess!”
While sharing my tale, I was told a story about a guy I know who had to ask the next-door neighbor lady to take a mouse nest out of his garage. He wasn’t able to stomach it.
I would say I’m a fairly modern woman, and know we are perfectly capable of doing things without a man’s help, but isn’t it funny that I just assumed the person coming to clean up the dead animal would be a man. Asking a woman friend to help with a dead animal would never have occurred to me assuming they’d be as grossed out by it as I was, and I’d assume that a man would be perfectly fine completing that task. Clearly, I was incorrect on both accounts.