Art patiently explained how raccoons eat our chickens. She didn't seem convinced and I think something in his heart took notice.
This little racoon was in the trap Monday. You can see Art gave it a water bottle, and he'd placed it in the shade. After feeding the rabbits and chickens he called Matthew and explained we were bringing a small raccoon so he and Ali could release it (far away from us). Art put the cage in the truck and we drove the fifteen miles to Matthew's house.
On the way I discovered he always wanted a racoon as a pet. He told me he didn't feel much pity for the full size growling and snarling raccoons we trapped. The little ones, crouched in a corner, trembling, were a different matter. I knew exactly what he meant. This new fella kept looking at me, pleading to let him out. I was glad Art didn't want to shoot him.
Racoon delivered, we went on our way. We called the next day and heard about the raccoon release. They'd kept the cage in the house to keep it safe and cool until evening. The afternoon temp that day was 103 degrees, so that was a kindness. After nightfall he drove to an old, abandoned church; the grass and trees around it would be perfect for little raccoons. He explained the "Facts of Raccoon Life" (as he called them) to Ali and they opened the trap. The little guy ambled out into the dark.
Matthew said she mentioned something about Papa Art not shooting that one, and I wondered if I should have told her the soft-hearted man wanted to keep it as a pet.