Tuesday, September 15, 2009
This morning, around 8:30, as I was walking to the bus stop, there was a young raccoon sitting against the curb. At first I thought it was a small cat - we looked at each other. I looked so pitiful - I noticed it was hurt - I figured it must have just been hit by a car.
Of course, I didn’t go near it - but as I walked to catch the bus, it started eating at me.
I tried 411 on my cell phone, but I didn’t have that capability. I got to the pay phone at the convenience store and naturally there was no phone book and the store owner claimed to have neither a phone nor a phone book. Yea, right! (I hate those dummies - I keep saying I’m not going to patronize them, but that’s a whole ‘nuther story!)
So I called my dentist’s office (the only people I knew the number to who I knew would be there and answer) - I got them to look up the Jacksonville Humane Society’s number.
Called the so-called HUMANE society - they don’t handle “that type of thing” - referred me to the city “help” line - the animal control division
I called the city’s so-called HELP line - they were NO help - referred me to the Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission (in Lake City) but who may be able to find some local help.
I kept saying it was only injured, but in pain and needed help or it would die! I swear, if I had a car I would have gone home and got something to wrap it up in securely so it wouldn’t hurt or bite me (yes, I know that wild animals have germs and possibly rabies)
The Wildlife receptionist said she would try to locate a racoon rehabilitator - she said she’d call me back & let me know - which she did and told me she tried 3 places with no luck.
I had to get on the bus. The bus passed an animal hospital that had the phone number posted on their building - I called them - they rudely said they “don’t do wild animals.” (Especially ones with no money!)
I called my old vet (just happened to remember their number!) - the receptionist referred me to another vet who does treat “exotics”
I called them - they do not pick up animals - I would have to bring it to them - which of course was not possible - I was calling from the bus! They referred me to a group called Wildlife Solutions (WSI)
I called WSI - the guy that answered seemed genuinely concerned and switched me to someone who could help - I was so relieved - WRONG! I got a voice mailbox that said - blah, blah, blah, look on our website for links to possible resources. Well, dern! I forgot to bring my desktop computer on the bus with me!
I called the FL Wildlife receptionist back and told her that I had made some calls and tried but would she please keep trying - she said she would.
When I got off the bus, I dreaded the walk back home because yes, sure enough, the poor little guy had died. (I called the receptionist at the Florida Wildlife commission back and told her.)
When I got in the house, I googled ‘raccoon rescue’ and finally found 2 local numbers that I could have called - IF ONLY I had gone back home and looked online when the animal still had a chance. Needless to say, I am just sick about this and so sad. I feel so terrible. Like I just let it die - like I could have and should have done more…