Chuckie the Raccoon

babyBlanketJust two handfuls of fur and big eyes, Chuckie arrived. Three young raccoons were spotted huddled against the cold in a residential yard. Chuckie was the smallest and the slowest.

A day or so passed and no mother seemed present. Hungry, cold, the young ones clearly needed help and the call came into Sky Harbor. As the rescue capture began, Chuckie’s larger siblings found a broken board in the fence and made their escape, leaving small stumbling baby brother behind, destined for rehab.

Chuckie was the most terrified little guy we had seen in a while. He had wide frightened eyes, displayed defensive posture, did a pretty good impression of a big mean snarly raccoon and was pretty accurate with his biting aim. My fingers and hands can attest to that! We scooped him up and giggled as he whimpered pathetically, curled into a ball, slapping both paws over his eyes. He was so frightened he babyCooniewet all over himself and us. ” Poor little guy”, I cooed as I wrapped him in a soft blanket and held him close.

His body was thin, his fur scruffy, he wasn’t interested in our offerings of milk replacer. We placed him with two other baby coons about his size. He cried, cowered and they began to work him over. We quickly rescued him from that situation.

Chuckie remained terrified of other raccoons, us, the dog, cats, free ranging chickens, ducks and basically , whatever moved. He would sneak out to grab some chow, fruit or veggies and race back to the safety of his hammock, where he would tuck himself under his quilt and remain there, munching away.

Each day we would grab him up, wrap him in a big soft blanket and try to get some warm milk formula in his tummy. We held, cooed to him a while and hoped for the best. We will never know the whole story of what happened to him or his mother, but it must have been terrible for him.

We continued to work with Chuckie and he soon decided maybe we were not so bad after all. He remained wary of us but has become all that he needs to be as a healthy young boy. He continued to make progress and scampered off in the spring with several other of his cage mates, into the heavy woods to explore and learn and be wild again.