“RRRrrrrrummp---thud!   WHAM!”  This is what I heard at 2:00 am, near the back door of my home.  With all the talk of BTK on the news, in my half stupor, I grabbed my baseball bat and set chase after the noise with extreme prejudice, and an even more healthy amount of caution.  Jobie, my six year old basset-dalmation mix barked constantly in the corner of my kitchen.  Jitter-bug, my four year old Jack Russell stood outside the door on the back porch barking at “big sister”.  

    “What on earth are you two barking at?”  Then, I saw it, hissing with big white teeth at my most beloved friends…(even though my dogs will never admit that they are indeed K-9’s)  From what I could see, Jitter-bug chased the Possum into the house, and Jobie was trying to chase it out.  However, the critter got pinned between my kitchen cabinets and the back door itself.  And any move in any direction meant moving out from that position into the jaws of my Jobie.

    My first concern is the same as any loving parent.  I did not want a bite from the  Possum and the possibility of Rabies infecting my four-legged child, and I sure didn’t want a bite myself.  So with much apprehension, I grabbed a dog leash from the back porch, placed the length through the hand slip, forming a noose.  I thought if I had the animal by the neck, and a bat in my other hand to keep myself protected, then I could easily maneuver the animal out of my home.    

    Unfortunately, as luck would have it, the Possum fought fiercely, Jobie bit into the Possum’s back and we played tug of war with it for a few seconds.   I didn’t want to clean up a mess of blood, (this being the third Possum that has gotten into my yard this year.  I prayed that this critter would not meet the demise of his fore-fathers.)  With laws of anatomy as they apply, I thought with my pulling on the noose, making the loop tighten around the throat, and Jobie pulling on the Possum like a rag doll, that it would have indeed met his maker by being strangled to death.  

    Eventually, Jobie relented and let me pull the Possum beyond the gate through the fence gate.  I had long since called 9-11 three different times, first when I found the vagrant, second when I got him outside the fence and then, as I sat there astonished, this animal stood up, my dog leash still well fastened around his neck, and took off into the night.

    I know that Possums play dead, I know that they are notorious scavengers and ferocious fighters…but I’ve never seen one with a leash.  I thought about how others might react if they saw a dog leash on a Possum.  Please, I don’t want my leash back, this Possum can continue his walk without me.  And if you see him around, he earned his jewelry, and is probably thankful for it.

Penned by:   Stacy A. Yarnell ----  October 5, 2004


Author's Notes/Comments: 

I'm so glad my wife wasn't home when this happened.  We've had a lot of talk about a serial killer in my local area named BTK, BTK stands for:  "BEAT, TORTURE, KILL."  I really was scared even though this has landed on a funny ha-ha note.  In sincerest terms, I never want to have another scare like this again.  I don't want the Possum, my aggressive and protective dogs, nor a screaming wife in my ear.  I'm looking at having twin grandchildren in the future, and my other grandchildren are already calling my house "THE POSSUM HOUSE".  They think they are being funny, HA! HA!  I hope you are doing well, and thanks for reading.

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Ruth Lovejoy's picture

as I said in my em to you this is awesome!!!!!!!