I Think What We Really Need Is a Roadrunner And a 500 Lb. Acme Anvil…

So, lest you think that life is all cornbread and roses out here in this beautiful little hamlet, let me tell you about the latest BIG AWFUL STUFF we have going on here in the Buckle:


Ok, granted, we had them in the tony ‘burbs of Brentwood, too (ironically, that post was written two years ago, almost to the day! I have no idea what that means.) but it appears these country coyotes are traveling in packs, which as you know, is never good…

There have been many, many sightings, as well as an alarming number of pets missing around here. I’ve personally seen two– one in broad daylight, and the other one at night, skulking waaay too close to the edge of our property line. Last night around 9, I got a phone call from Shirley (you’ll meet her another time, I’m trying to tell a story here) and she told me horrible tales about brazen coyotes venturing up on porches, having to be chased out of yards and a neighbor up the street whose Yorkie was shredded right in front of him.

She actually used the word “SHREDDED,” people. TWICE.

Well, that’s all my girls needed to hear. We knew the dogs would be safe in the kitchen as always, but they unanimously decided that our resident porch cats would have to spend the night inside the house, which was an idea that neither the cats nor I were crazy about. But Madi insisted that since her room is right off the front porch where they sleep, if she woke up to the sound of cats being shredded she would probably need intensive therapy for life, and hey, college tuition is high enough so we can’t be doing that. I reluctantly agreed, and she hopped in the car to head to WalMart to purchase litter pans. We set the two girl cats up in the downstairs half-bath, and relegated Norman to Madi’s bathroom. Ol’ Normie settled in pretty quickly, after sizing the situation up and realizing that a) it was nice and warm and b) he had a bed, a water bowl and food in there with him. So he was all, “Yeah, I’m good, I’ll just be going to sleep now.”

The girl cats on the other hand, were NOT HAVING IT. The lovely BC (which as you know stands for ‘rhymes with witch’ cat) was particularly vocal about it– and though she may look like a glamour puss…


…she actually sounds more like this:

So, yeah– not pleasant to listen to. And Porch Cat basically decided that she needed to explore every square inch of the bathroom to see if there was any way out, which resulted in this:

Norman had a relatively uneventful night, unless you count the veritable EXPLOSION of STINK he (halfway) deposited in the litter box, which assailed my nostrils at 6:30 this morning when I tiptoed into Madi’s bathroom to let him out. May I just say that I think I deserve some kind of humanitarian award for cleaning up cat diarrhea before I even had coffee. Apparently Norman’s stress level manifests itself in his bowel area, and his aim is, shall we say, less than accurate. (And if you know me and my hair-trigger gag reflex at all, you know I have caved under far less pressure.)

Add to this the fact that after numerous futile phone calls to numerous state agencies and private critter control people ($550 dollars to set a few traps up in my yard for 5 nights only, whether you catch any or not? Really, critter control people??), and you will understand why this animal-loving pacifist blonde has now morphed into a steely-eyed, potential coyote-killing blonde.

Except for, you know,  I don’t believe in have any guns. And I wouldn’t know how to shoot them if I did, so basically I would be about as effective as this:

However, this is rural Tennessee for crying out loud, so I should be able to find any number of armed, ready and willing Duck Dynasty-types who would love to take out a few coyotes, right? One would think so. But remember, this is also a town chock full of gentle artists, musicians and creative types, so it might possibly be harder than I think to round up a coyote posse… Nah, I guarantee nobody around here wants their pets to go missing or even worse, see them *shudder* SHREDDED in front of them. I know I sure don’t.

I mean seriously, who in the world can stand the thought of these sweet faces staring at you from the back of a a milk carton?

As much as I hate to admit it,  apparently having a predator threaten my furry loved ones has forced me to go rogue.

 So yeah, coyotes… game on.

11 Responses

  1. Nova Scotia Mama

    We here in rural Nova Scotia can empathize with your coyote issues.
    On another note….we were so excited to attend the Russ Taff concert in our small town last night (Wish you had been able to come to Tori). I got to request New Hope Road and was so excited to hear him perform that song. He was so gracious, warm, funny & sincere – it was an awesome night. I can’t believe it is the 2nd time in 3 years that he’s been here.

  2. tori

    Nova Scotia Mama: I’m so glad you went! And I wish I could have been there, too. But as you can see, I was bravely here at home protecting the world from coyotes…

  3. Nova Scotia Mama

    Well good luck with that! Maybe some good ole “Duck Dynasty” types will come to your rescue after all :)

  4. auburn60

    Madi and I were talking about this on Twitter last night. The coyotes in TN have united in some scary, predatory fashion; packs have also been sighted here and small animals have disappeared. I’m not so sure about killing them,though. A TN wildlife officer explained to me that it is illegal in this state to kill a SNAKE on your property! A SNAKE, people! (So, I didn’t show him the dismembered remains in the bucket near my woodpile that met an unfortunate demise at the end of my hoe. Yeah, I went all “Prairie Woman” that day. While my daughter helpfully *took pictures*. ) Anyway, I’ve heard there are noises that scare them off. How do you feel about blowing the “trumpet of Jesus” off your porch every couple of hours during the night?

  5. LindaB

    I can’t believe this! We’ve dealt with the coyote issue (they’ve been seen in our yard, five of them once, when people have driven up our driveway, and we are now on to bigger game——cougars (or mountain lions). A friend of ours works at the DNR and told us a cougar (and she actually used this same word) “shredded” a HORSE on a farm in our area!!! SHREDDED A HORSE!! This is insane! Those kind of animals should be out in the wild wild west!! My hairdresser said a man in her small town hit one with his car when it ran into the road. He lifted it up for a picture and it was longer than he was! Our lot borders a woods and one night my hubby went out to his pole barn and came running back inside and said he heard two animals fighting in the woods and it was the most awful sound he ever heard—–growling and groaning and a sound like bones breaking! (I don’t know if that’s possible, but that’s what he said.) And honestly NOTHING scares my husband! (Except maybe my Visa bill when it comes.) My DNR friend said it sounds like a cougar to her. Now, I won’t let the grandkids go back in the woods like they used to love to do. Or go in the yard alone, and that goes for our dog too. And one of us goes to the bus stop with Chloe in the morning. It’s creeping me out! I’m very concerned and if I saw such an animal, I don’t care what the law says or what the consequences are, I’m gonna shoot that sucker DEAD! It don’t need to be anywhere near my grandchildren…..or ME!

  6. LindaB

    I kind of got my punctuation messed up in the beginning of my comment——my hands were shaking just talking about this wild dangerous animal problem!!

  7. auburn60

    OK, I did a little research. Coyotes can be the size of a small German Shepherd, their sense of smell is 23x better than humans, they can run fast but can’t climb well. They don’t like loud or shrill noises. You CAN “hunt” coyote any time of the year,according to the Tn Wildlife people, but then,of course, you have to deal with the dead coyote remains. Here’s the good news: my husband says he will come with a shotgun and sit on your porch and pick off any varmints you like! So, you know, when ever you want us we’ll come to your rescue. You didn’t think I was gonna just SEND him, did you? And miss all the fun? And potential tall tales?

  8. LindaB

    Good thinkin’, Alyson! And if you need someone to supply the “loud or shrill” noises, for a little fried chicken I’m your woman.

    (Can you imagine coming upon a skunk with 23 times the smelling ability of humans?? Maybe that’s the answer to the coyote problem.)

  9. Barbara M. Lloyd

    If those coyotes were smart, all they would have to do to get a little food would be to hang around on Tori’s porch, looking hungry while smiling at her.

    My daughter is a horsewoman and rides around in Hitchcock Woods all of the time. She takes her very large German Shepherd with her along with her whip and a small gun. Unbelievedly, this has become necessary…and my Joan is an animal lover equal only to Tori.She has had a few light encounters…her dog gets between the coyote and the horse. But her dog is getting old now and other animals sense it when another one is not as strong….survival of the fitest, I think it is called. Anyway, one day three coyotes were stalking her on her horse (horses are terified of them) and she was afraid she was going to lose her dog, so she fired towards them and, thankfully, they ran away. She won’t take her dog anymore. Can you imagine having a daughter who would think this a good dinner conversation with her mother?
    They are bad out in the country. It’s against the law to kill one here, too, but farmers do so and everybody looks the other way. With the explosion of coyotes all over the united states, I believe it is time for that law to be changed.

    I’m not a volunteer for this job, Tori…..not even fried chicken could lure me into that fight…but I have to tell you, I cracked up when Alyson suggested sounding the Trumpet of Jesus to scare them off. Now, if my Russ were the one sounding the trumpet, I might be persuaded into keeping his coffee hot for him….bless his sweet little heart. I knew I could find a way to make him a hero if I kept typing long enough.

  10. tori

    Auburn60: Apparently it’s ok to kill the coyotes, it’s just not legal to discharge a weapon within city limits. However, Bell Buckle has exactly one policeman (his name is Tommy) and he’s apparently on board with getting these suckers outta here too… (And you killed a snake? YAY and EWWW!) Also– tell your adorable hubs that my porch awaits!

    LindaB: Shredded a HORSE??? That is horrifying! And SCARY!

    Momma Lloyd: I think we’ll keep our hero Russ “Trumpet of Jesus” Taff off the porch– I went to Walmart yesterday and got an Airhorn of Jesus and I’m just itching to use it!

  11. Barbara M. Lloyd

    Well, Tori, I love you very much but I don’t think I will volunteer to come and keep your coffee hot while you are shooting that airhorn….’cause you’d be so nervous if you saw one of those critters coming toward you that all we would have to do is put a bunch of grapes at your feet and you’d press your own wine.

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