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Police to the rescue after raccoon rampages in Langford home

The raccoon took a combative stance with the residents before being trapped in a bathroom. That’s when police got involved.

Miles Brown’s broken guitar is just one piece of evidence that an attacking ­raccoon was inside his Langford home.

Swinging the guitar was one of the ways he and his family tried to fend off the snarling animal, which had rushed in the back door while chasing their dog, Chance, a medium-sized mixed breed.

Brown jumped into action “and believe it or not the only thing I had in reach was my acoustic guitar, which, unfortunately, has sentimental value,” he said.

“I’m looking in the kitchen and there’s my wife, Sandra, hands-on trying to get between this raccoon and the dog, and my son’s there, as well.”

Brown got in a few hits with the guitar, breaking it in the process.

“My guitar’s toast,” he said.

He said the raccoon was very aggressive.

“It was not stopping, it was attacking anyone. It had a way out and it chose to stay and fight.”

During the Tuesday dust up, his wife literally dived on the raccoon to try to stop it, he said.

The raccoon then headed into an adjacent bathroom and Brown slammed the door shut as it hissed and growled.

With that, Brown called West Shore RCMP in the hope that they could ­connect him with someone from animal control.

But it turned out that police were already on their way, after being called by someone who heard his wife’s screams when she first saw the dog being attacked outside.

“She was pretty vocal, the dog was in pain and yelping,” Brown said. “There was a full-on fight.”

He figured his dog was dealing with more than one raccoon when the whole thing started.

“You see them around the neighbourhood but you don’t really think they’re going to come into your household.”

Nearby Mill Hill Regional Park was the possible source of the unwanted visitor.

Brown had high praise for the ­officers who responded. After a call was placed to animal control and no one was available to come by, he said one of the officers assured him they were there to help.

“He said: ‘We’re here now, we got this with you.’ ”

Their next step was to open the bathroom door and use a board to start ushering the raccoon out.

At that point, an officer noticed Brown’s son was holding a lacrosse stick and asked if he could use it to prod the raccoon.

“How more Canadian can you get?” he said, laughing. “You’ve the RCMP with a lacrosse stick fighting a raccoon. It was just bizarre.”

The officer got the animal under some semblance of control and sent it outside.

Brown said the dog ended up with puncture wounds and needed stitches, while his wife had injuries on her hands, forearms and knees.

“I don’t know how she avoided serious injury,” Brown said. “She had scratches and some bites but nothing really severe.”

The raccoon also caused damage to the kitchen floor and the bathroom.

Brown said he was speaking about the incident because Const. Andrew Matheson and Const. Grant Mackay did such a great job with a challenging situation.

“Those guys were amazing,” he said. “Police officers need recognition when they do something like this.”

Const. Nancy Saggar said that the department doesn’t usually deal with wildlife-related calls.

“However, residents in the home had received injuries from this animal and animal control was not available, so the officers stepped in to help.”

Police wished the residents and the dog a speedy recovery, and pointed to a provincial government website with information about dealing with raccoons.

Raccoons are not typically aggressive and do not tend to injure people, the site says, but they can be dangerous if they are cornered or feel threatened.

Dogs are not an effective means of deterring raccoons, it says, so pets should be indoors at night. Garbage should be kept in plastic bags inside a building or shed, and garbage-can lids secured with straps or hooks.

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