The village under siege by RACCOON DOGS: Police hunt aggressive animals terrorising locals and attacking pets after escaping enclosure
Mandy Marsh, 53, with her niece Mazey Burton, five, told how it took her two hours to chase off a raccoon dog in Nottinghamshire
Police are investigating in a village under siege by two wild ‘raccoon dogs‘ that are terrorising locals and attacking animals.
Officers were called to Clarborough in Nottinghamshire after residents reported being subjected to a two hour stand off with the bizarre-looking creatures.
Mandy Marsh, 53, and her husband Dale, 54, were woken at about 4am by a ‘blood curdling scream‘ and ran outside.
They saw a dog-sized animal which they had never seen before in a stand off with their pet goat Betty and pony Peaches.
The couple, armed with planks of wood, said it took them two hours to chase off the snarling and hissing animal.
But it returned minutes later to corner a dog walker outside their home, before scarpering off.
Nottinghamshire Police confirmed two ‘potentially dangerous‘ raccoon dogs which are ‘not domesticated‘ have escaped from a nearby enclosure – and warned anyone who sees them to call 999.
Mrs Marsh said that since the ambush yesterday, locals have been in touch to report other sightings and attacks on animals in the village.
The raccoon dog is indigenous to East Asia and is unrelated to raccoons but is related to fox and wolf.
They eat anything from insects and reptiles to small mammals, eggs, and crops and in 2017 the RSPCA warned people against keeping them as pets.
She said: ‘It was actually terrifying. We were laid in bed at about 4am and I heard such a terrifying noise like I had never heard before. It was screaming.
‘My husband went out and opened the door and the dog shot out. The dog was barking like mad and my husband went out after her.
‘He came back and he said to me ‘you are going to have to come and see this, there is something in the field attacking the pony and I have absolutely no idea what it is‘.
‘We ran out and this animal – we now know it‘s a raccoon – was trying to attack our goat. The pony was standing in the way trying to protect the goat.
‘The raccoon was trying to kill it. This raccoon was absolutely crazy. It was hissing and screaming and snarling. It was going absolutely mad.
‘We ran in with two great big pieces of wood to try and shoo the raccoon off and try and get it to go away so we could get the animals out of the field.
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‘The animals wouldn‘t move because they were terrified and this raccoon wouldn‘t budge either and was just hissing.
‘It kept coming up and we couldn‘t get near enough to put something on it. The goat and pony were going crazy. It went on for about two hours. We couldn‘t get rid of it.‘
Mrs Marsh, who lives in a bungalow surrounded by fields, said vets said the goat was left with a sore shoulder and scratches.
She called the RSPCA who told her because it was attacking livestock, they should call police, she said.
The animal returned, and Mr Marsh ran out to confront it once more when it cornered a dog walker, after 6am.
‘My husband heard this noise and shot out again,‘ said Mrs Marsh. ‘A woman came along with a dog, not on a lead, and saw the raccoon.
‘She thought it was a cat at first. It cornered the dog. She couldn‘t get to it. The dog was going crazy. It was squawking and barking and my husband grabbed it.
‘The woman eventually ran off down the lane with it – it was only a puppy – really upset. It would have killed that dog. We‘ve never seen anything like it in our lives. It was scary. We didn‘t know what it was. It looked terrible.‘
She posted about the animal online and experts identified it as a raccoon dog.
Mrs Marsh claims police said they would put up a helicopter it if it wasn‘t found soon, and a local wildlife tracker has offered help.
‘He said something was attacking animals around here recently,‘ she said. ‘He said he will come out and try and track it for us. They will have to get rid of it. It‘s dangerous.
‘They police have asked for pictures. They said they are going to send the helicopter to try and track it because of kids.
They are worried about kids getting hurt because it‘s really, really nasty. Police have said to call 999 if we see it again.‘
She estimated the raccoon dog was around three stone and the size of a Staffordshire bull terrier.
A police spokesman said: ‘Residents in the Clarborough area near Retford are being warned to be vigilant after two captive raccoon dogs escaped their enclosure.
‘They went missing from an enclosure in Big Lane, Clarborough at around 6am on Tuesday May 28, 2019.
‘The animals, which are described as being the same size of a medium to small sized dog, are potentially dangerous if approached as they are not domesticated.
‘Police are advising anyone who sees the animals to report any sightings by calling 999.‘