Sunday, 18 December 2011

The Porcupine Incident - Bet

Howdy Ho everybody, your Roving Border Collie, Bet, here!

I was going to do a wrap up of the week (or so) of the Interwebs, but the Musher asked that I tell everyone about the icky porcupine incident.

For those of you that don't know, this is what a porcupine looks like:

They are NASTY rodents that have sharp quills that they shoot like spears at their enemies... ok, they don't actually shoot their quills, but it seems like they do.  Their scientific name is: MajorusStickyOuchHurtsGoodEating.

Anyhoo, the other day while the Musher and Corrine (Musher niece) was out with the Pretty Curly Tails, they were about 8 miles away from home, minding their own business, and an evil ninja porcupine leaped out of nowhere and attacked the Pretty Curly Tails!!!

Ok, actually the Pretty Curly Tails spotted the porcupine at the same time as Musher and Corrine, but by then it was too late.  The Musher tried to stop the sled, but there was ice on the road, the Pretty Curly Tails REALLY wanted to chase the evil rodent, the evil rodent was trying to get to its den, chaos ensued and bad mojo happened.

Boo and Rocket (in the lead) tried pulling the thing from its den and got quilled in the mouth and muzzle.  Rocket looks like she tried to jump on it because she got quills in her mouth, muzzle, chest and leg... here is a picture of her harness after the fact:

I mean LOOK AT THAT!  Those razor sharp quill things just went right through her harness!!!

Corrine did a GREAT job helping the Musher during the whole melee.  Not only was she able to stay calm during total chaos, but followed the Musher's instructions and was instrumental in keeping the total damage down to a minimum of a few dogs.  Only Boo, Rocket, Jinx, and Kelly got a piece of the action and quilled in the process.

The Musher called Musher Mark and Sarah handler, who swooped in with the truck and betwen them all, were able to pull the quills out of everyone, and the majority out of Rocket, but it was quite clear that Rocket would need to go see Dr. Jackson.

Dr. Jackson had to knock Rocket out, shave her right should and pulled 15 more deeply imbedded quills out of her shoulder, more from her mouth and muzzle.  Dr. Jackson had to cut into the shoulder muscle to get out some of the quills.

Here is poor Rocket after the procedure

The pesky quills don't show up on X-rays, so there's a chance there are more in little dancing Rocket.  The EVIL thing about quills is that they can migrate through a body and come out who knows where!  That means we have to keep Rocket in the house, quiet, under supervision and our eye on her to make sure the EVIL quills don't migrate to very important places... this really sucks peoples!

So, we have another guest in the house... sigh

Although I totally understand that we have to make sure Rocket heals and all, its still a bit upsetting for the household.  She actually slept in the bedroom with us last night... MY bedroom!  There's a perfectly good closet in the back room, but who slept in there last night???  ME!  Ok, I could have slept in the bedroom, but this whole change thing is disturbing.

To make matters worse, Rocket doesn't like cats, which means that Tic and Bait are hiding outside the house somewhere... actually they aren't hiding, they're hanging off the window screens peering in because they're cold and inconvenienced.

The porcupine is apparently dead or packed its bags and left, as well as it should be for putting me through this!

The Musher is pretty upset about the whole thing and wants to make sure it never happens again, but I think she's taking things a bit too far.  The Pretty Curly Tails are having a difficult time training in their new porcupine proof equipment.

- Bet


Brooke said...

our dogs attack and kill skunks, squirrels, rabbits, mice, shrews, moles, rats. The deer and racoons, fox and possum steer clear of our dogs. Coyotes are all around the woods near us, but so far no problem. I have never seen a porcupine up close. Now, I never want to. I hope Rocket heals thoroughly and will be better for next season's runs. I'm so sorry this happened. I'm sure Pretty Curly Tails are, too.

Cyber-sibes said...

Woozers, Bet, woo should win a Porcupine Pulitzer for this report! Poor Rocket, we'll keep paws crssed she heals up fine & gets back to dancing soon!

jack& moo

bakavi said...

Poor Rocket ..but I bet she loves an indoor rprieve. I hope this does not pull her from the eventual Iditarod team. These guys are tough, they heal fast so here is hoping.

ra husky said...

Oh no! I know all bout those vile creatures, I got into it good with one last summer up in the hills and #1 had to sit on me for about 6 hours and pull out quills with the pliers, hope woo heal soon precious,


Adella said...

Many years ago we were hiking in White Mountains with our first husky Czarina. As we were hiking down trail, Czarina takes off after a small creature in middle of trail.She tried to grab it, and of course got a mouthful of quills.
We were fortunate to find a vet that night that sedated her and removed quills. He said it was a common occurence with visiting dogs. Fortunately we do not have porcupines in Virginia.
We do have skunks, but that is another story or should I say many stories. Have had "curley tails" for 39 years. Life would be so dull without them.

Teanna said...

OW! Hope Rocket's ok!
I worked with a wildlife rehabber and we had a lecture porky (we herded him gently with a shovel, and carried him around in crates). We always told people to cut the quills before pulling them (lets the air out, supposedly makes it easier to pull). Fortunately porkys live further north than right here(south PA). PA reintroduced fishercats (a large member of the weasel family) back in the 80s to eat the porkys...they are apparently one of the few things that successfully hunt them. Maybe we should send you a few fishers....

Barbara said...

Poor baby! Heal quickly, Rocket.

Anonymous said...

You'll have to put a patent on that suit ...and maybe have to invest in wd40

ForPetsSake said...

Haha! Just found you through Cyber Sibes. Great post! I'm sorry about the evil quills, but at least the porcupine has high-tailed it away. I particularly enjoyed the new racing gear you'll have to's very, er, safe?
LOL - good to meet you ;)