My folks had a huge garden in their backyard last summer, and were surprised to find tiny little bite marks all over their various veggies. Corn with all the little nibblets missing, squashed tomatoes, half-cucumbers, and zucchinis that looked like someone took a peeler to one side of them.
They also have a meangie mutt - at least, that's what I like to call him. And he constantly needs to go outside, mostly just to screw around and eat leaves and grass rather than to piss. It was during one of these whimpering sessions on a visit that I let him out to behold the vandalized veggie culprit: a HUGE, fat-ass woodchuck.
He was just chillin' in the garden eating one of mom's latest mutated zucchinis, which apparently were his favorite. Unfortunately, the untrained mutt had to start going apeshit, chasing the poor little woodchuck out of the backyard and through a secret hole he dug under the fence to safety. My dad especially, was not pleased.
He's a gruff bastard, that freaks out when birds perch on the windowsill. When I still lived at home, I loved it when little kitties, bunnies, or the rare hummingbird would stop to pay a visit. And sure as shit, he'd be right there to put an end to the serene sight by screaming like a metal band frontman, waving his fists around, attracting the attention of every neighbor for a block, and nearly scaring these poor, defenseless, little hungry critters to death.
Which is why I was so happy when, during a visit a few weeks ago, I went to let the meangie mutt outside again to find the fat little woodchuck had come back, hunting for berries!!
Knowing my mother, it was inevitable the whole garden deal wouldn't last longer than a season, so today the entire area is a mess of overgrown weeds, bug carcasses, and few veggies. But that doesn't stop the little fatty from coming back everyday, probably cuz he remembers all the delicious treats he filled his belly with last summer. And I say to my folks, leave him alone. The poor little woodchuck remembers us, is hungry, and needs some food for his family!
I mean, I don't think I've seen a wild animal so fat, fuzzy, and cute. When I mentioned grocery shopping for tomatoes and zucchinis I'd like to lay out in the backyard, the shit hit the fan. They're determined to do anything to get rid of the poor thing, since they're worried their precious, useless, mengie dog will somehow get rabies from chasing a scared furball after giving it a fucking heart attack.
And tonight, it was BBQ at my aunt's, due to an uncle's visit from the south. That's the south, as in, the place where they do nothing but work, drive 4-wheelers, and shoot rifles. And my appetite was ruined thanks to his insistence that my folks shoot the poor little woodchuck! He even brought up the idea of getting a pellet gun and crippling it, hopefully causing it to bleed to death in someone else's yard.
This is just far too cruel. They have neighbors poisoning chipmunks, setting traps for fuzzy bunnies, and now my folks, who claim to love animals, are considering popping a cap into a defenseless, hungry woodchuck.
What the fuck is this about?? A deer is majestic, but a tiny bunny is just horrible? A dog is cute, but 30 pounds of fuzz nibbling on a lettuce leaf is just disgusting? Tribbles are funny, but dwarf mice and random cats rolling around lovingly on your patio are nothing to chuckle at?
Wild or not, there's a motto I always go by considering animals: The fatter and fuzzier, the cuter. I'd gladly give up a few tomatoes for the sake of watching an adorable woodland critter getting even more fat, and as far as I see it, no one claiming to love animals and not being able to stand suffering should think of poisoning or shooting one. Put out a veggie plate and lower your blood pressure - it's good for all involved.