A little backyard mystery…

Because I just can’t bring myself to write at length about how frustrating it is to teach young children to eat and use good decent  manners at the dinner table, sit in their chairs, and actually eat their dinner, I bring you this little mystery that I discovered this morning.

When I took Lucy out this morning, most of the approximately 20 inches of snow we got last week had melted.  Regardless, as I trudged through what was left of it to scoop up after her dog business, I noticed some paw-prints in the snow that don’t seem to be hers.  She also went a little crazy sniffing around the back fence, and I had to coax her back inside after her hackles were raised (the fur along her spine was standing straight up), for no reason that was apparent to me.  So I went inside and got my camera.  Isn’t that what anyone would have done?  😉

For reference, I took a few pictures to show what Lucy’s paw-prints look like, since the mystery prints weren’t much bigger, and I don’t want anyone to think I’m just a crazy lady who’s making a fuss over seeing her own dog’s paw-prints in the snow:

And now, here are the mystery animal prints.  You can see that they’re totally different than Lucy’s, right?  We had a few deer sightings a few months ago, but I’m no dummy, I know these aren’t deer hoof-prints.  We’ve seen racooons & skunks too, but I thought both of those would have prints smaller than Lucy’s, and also I thought they’d be narrow like Lucy’s.  I think it’s also fairly obvious they’re not rabbit prints.  So, within the confines of our fenced backyard, I have no idea what kind of animal might have left these prints.  Any thoughts?  I’d love to hear what else anyone thinks these might be.


4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Ashley on January 4, 2011 at 8:48 AM

    I would say racoon only because of the nails!


    • Posted by Karen on January 4, 2011 at 10:20 AM

      I thought so at first too because of the one that looks kind of hand-shaped, but I’m second-guessing that because wouldn’t a raccoon’s print be smaller than a beagle’s?

      Someone else thought coyote, and I googled what coyote prints would look like, and I’m pretty convinced now that’s what it is. It’s kind of scary, because these were REALLY close to our back porch! 😮 I’d much rather it be a raccoon than a coyote…


  2. Posted by Dee Atkins on May 13, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    Hi I have just stumbled across your picture and cannot believe the similarities in the story and pictures I took this year in England.

    I have told this story to my family and they thought I was mental lol until I told them to look in garden. Basically I woke suddenly from a dream and when i opened my eyes i saw a Sasquatch like creature at the side of my bed (don’t be alarmed I not a nut job,just read on before you judge lol). Anyway I let out a yelp moving instantly away and towards the husbands side of the bed and it had gone. Obviously the hub woke up and thought it had served me right as id been watching Sky tv big foot mysteries earlier that evening.I didn’t see the funny side and couldn’t stop my body from shaking.

    Next day we get up and go to work with me feeling like an idiot. When we return later my hub asks why the kids have been in the back garden (no one goes into back as its been renovated and basically it’s a tiny area not large enough play area for kids). I explain we don’t know where the keys are for the new door. He then points to the foot prints in the snow and asks where they are.

    I ran straight upstairs to get a better overall view at the prints from our bedroom window (my garden is on a rise) and the prints looked weird,like something, a dog/small kid had come into the back garden and walked in a circle in the snow. We went out to investigate and I just don’t know what the prints are,they can’t be from our dog as she’s a small boxer and these prints are too big,yet I can see claw marks in them. If your prints are a raccoon then what the heck are mine as I didn’t think we had many wild raccoons in England where I live lol. In all honesty I thought my brother had posted the picture as a joke until I read your story. Have you had any other theories? Is it a dog print? I am eager to know and I apologise if I have alarmed you.I can even email the pics I have. Kindest Regards Dee


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