I've seen links to a story on a canine distemper outbreak in St. Louis animal shelters all weekend. The illness has killed 17 dogs, mostly puppies, at the Stray Rescue of St. Louis. The rescue said 10 other dogs are still alive and have tested positive for distemper. This is bad enough to learn, but the cause is even more disturbing.
The cause is raccoons. Raccoons! Our nemesis in Collinsville for several years. Thankfully we keep Ferdie up on his shots, but it's still worrisome what these raccoons may be carrying. A couple of years ago Critter Control came out and over a period of one week, they trapped 16 raccoons, 1 possum, and a neighbors cat on our property. They released the cat but carried off the others.
Needless to say, raccoons have been prevalent in Collinsville. Recently, I haven't heard of a raccoon sighting nor has Ferdie been fascinated by something or some smell around the deck or our next door neighbors deck, but that doesn't mean we're totally in the clear.
Here's an FYI. Raccoons are not the loveable fuzzballs movies and commercials make them out to be.