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  #1  
Old 10-06-2007, 08:42 PM
WeHeartAnnie WeHeartAnnie is offline
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Default wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

We have been leaving food out in someone's yard because she had several sightings of a loose dog and our dog has been missing for several weeks after a contractor left a gate open in our yard. The woman saw the dog for about 2 weeks but has not seen it since Sunday when her husband chased it. I am trying to establish a feeding pattern in her yard (she's very nice to let us do this) and then I'm going to bait the humane trap we rented in hopes that we will catch the loose dog (and in bigger hopes that it is our dog).

The first night I put out kibble (dog food) topped with some gravy and stew meat. When I check the next afternoon, the stew meat and gravy were gone, but not the kibble. Then I replaced the stew meat with hamburgers--again, hamburgers were gone, but not stew meat.

I know dogs who have been out for awhile have trouble eating hard food, so I'm hoping the dog is eating this food. But it could also be something like a raccoon.

Does anyone know what type of wildlife would eat meat but not dry dog food? Wouldn't a racoon eat both? I am thinking it could be cats too, but the meat pieces were pretty big so I'm not sure.

Your thoughts?

Thank you!!!!
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Old 10-06-2007, 08:56 PM
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MissDolittle MissDolittle is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

Hello WeHeartAnnie, welcome on board! Sorry to hear that your dog is missing! I hope you find him back. Did you call the shelters in the area?

As to eating the hamburger meat and not the harder pieces..just about every animal out there will do that. Of course they take the softer meat, get full and don't bother with the other stuff.

Skunk, coon, opossum, fox..all of those could be the culprit. Maybe you can keep an eye out for some foot prints or pieces of hair on a branch or so?
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  #3  
Old 10-08-2007, 07:53 PM
WeHeartAnnie WeHeartAnnie is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

Thanks so much for the info Miss Doolittle. Yes, we are regulars at all of the area shelters. We have also given out about 500 flyers, put up dozens of posters, have ads in the paper and all over the Internet, etc. Very discouraging.

Today I went to check on the food bowls and the hamburger and the little bit of bread were all gone. Also, I had pillowcases with my scent on them at both locations, and at the one where I think it's more likely Annie might be, the pillowcase had urine on it. Do you think wild animals would urinate on something like that? It was near the food.

We live in Northeast Ohio and have groundhogs, skunks, opossum, raccoons, squirrels, chipmunks, coyotes (but probably not in this particular area), etc.
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:21 AM
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MissDolittle MissDolittle is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

My heart goes out to you! Not knowing can drive you up the walls!

Any of these animals you listed pretty much don't care where they go potty, and almost all animals do go potty during or right after eating, so that's not uncommon or a clue to go by in order to identify what is eating the food.
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Old 10-09-2007, 07:52 PM
WeHeartAnnie WeHeartAnnie is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

Thanks for letting me know, Miss Doolittle--good to know that it's not really a good clue. Today at both houses the bowls of water were also gone that we left out. That is the first time the water bowls were emptied--usually just the food is gone. Is that a clue, or would most wildlife drink a big bowl of water after eating?
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Old 10-10-2007, 10:25 AM
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MissDolittle MissDolittle is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

I don't think the critters care what it looks like, as long as there's water readily available.
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Old 10-11-2007, 02:31 AM
WeHeartAnnie WeHeartAnnie is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

I just meant would a lot of wildlife drink a big bowl of water? I just thought that seemed more like something a domestic animal might do. I mean, I know wildlife need water too--but I didn't know if they would lap down a big bowl of water like a dog would. I know a cat most likely would not do that. Thanks.
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Old 10-11-2007, 09:04 AM
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

Oh, I see, you meant the amount of water that was gone..yes, I'm pretty certain you can rule out squirrels..even if there were multiple animals, I doubt they'll empty an entire bowl. But larger critters, if there are more than one..how big where the bowls?
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Old 10-14-2007, 06:41 PM
WeHeartAnnie WeHeartAnnie is offline
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Default Re: wildlife dietary likes/dislikes

The bowls were big Glad disposable bowls--something like you would put a large salad in. We caught an opossum in one of the humane traps the other morning. He had the ham bone down from the wire in the back of the cage and was eating it. My husband let him out and he seemed okay. Maybe he was drinking the water?
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