Charlotte woman saves puppy in raccoon attack

  • Sep. 7, 2004 3:00 p.m.

Queen Charlotte’s Sherri Jensen is a hero in the eyes of her ten month old puppy, Princess Dupchew. And while it’s true most dogs think pretty highly of their owners, Princess Dupchew (the name means ‘little one’ in Haida), owes more to Ms Jensen than most other dogs do to their owners.
It all started at 5 am Saturday, at Ms Jensen’s home on the main road beside Forestry Hill. “I woke up with my puppy just yelping and screaming so loud,” she said, and realized it was being attacked by a raccoon two or three times its size.
“I came racing to the doorÂ…I slammed (it), hoping to stop the attack. The raccoon is now dragging my puppy down the stairs, off the porch,” she said, “so I come running down bare-feet, my mind is scattering with thoughts, ‘what do I do, what do I do’, and right away knowing that half-naked bare feet is not a good start.”
Ms Jensen looked around for a weapon, but found none. By this time the raccoon is trying to pin the puppy down, growling at it, and the terrified puppy is yelping and jumping around as much as it can.
“I instantly thought to grab (the raccoon) by the back and wing it, but no, it’ll attack my hand and me and everything, not that is not a good idea” a still shaken Ms Jensen told the Observer Monday, “so I booted it as hard as I can (with bare feet) and I backed up then, and it still carried on.”
Becoming desperate, Ms Jensen grabbed what was closest to hand, a flowerpot full of soil and plants, raising it high above her head, praying it would stop the attack and that it wouldn’t hit Princess Dupchew.
“So I threw it down real hard, so hard that (the raccoon) let go of my puppy,” she said. She fell down backwards herself, and the racoon started to make a charge at her. “I grabbed another container, I wung (threw) at it, I hit it in the butt, and it took off,” she said. End of story for the attack, good-bye raccoon.
At this point Ms Jensen’s thoughts turned to her 5-year old son Kenny, awakened by the noise, and now standing on the deck where just a few short minutes before the raccoon had grabbed Princess Dupchew. She shouted to him to get back in the house, then went to look for the puppy, sick with worry about the injuries she might find. But Princess Dupchew was virtually unscathed, only a little blood on one foot. Ms Jensen thinks that the puppy’s jumping around during the attack prevented the raccoon from getting a good hold, and prevented serious injury.
The raccoon, not seen since, was a big one, according to Ms Jensen, who’s seen raccoons in the neighbourhood before. “It was huge, it was really big, easily two or three times (as big as) Princess Dupchew. It was one of the biggest raccoons I ever saw”, she said.
A couple of changes at Ms Jensen’s house this week. Ms Jensen says the puppy now thinks of her as a hero. And for a shaken but recovering Princess Dupchew, there’s a silver lining as well-she now gets to stay in the house, safely behind a locked door, and doesn’t have to sleep on the porch anymore.