Addendum: Ricky the squirrel came back. Late yesterday afternoon as Maya was walking by the front porch she noticed Ricky climbing the screens and she yelled, “Ricky’s back!” She opened the door letting him in and he joyfully tightrope walked along the laundry lines and played amongst the hanging clothes. Then he hopped on to Maya’s shoulders and when Maya moved her left hand to pat him he began to savagely biting her right hand up to her elbow – she screamed, he bit. We adults ran to her aid but as we got there Ricky had jumped on the clothesline and out of harms way. Maya cried and felt rather betrayed by the squirrel that she had helped raise from an injured infant.
While Karin bathed Maya’s injuries and made plans to have her looked at, the squirrel returned and tried to come into the house. He succeeded by pushing aside the air conditioner screen and poked his head into the living room. Karin immediately grabbed a quilt and reminiscent of last Sunday, herded Ricky on to the farmer’s porch, shut the door and repaired the air conditioner’s screen. It felt like we were being held captive by an angry squirrel. Karin will be in touch with the wildlife service about the possibility of setting up a trap and release so that Ricky can be on his own and thrive.
Karin is very miffed at herself for not releasing Ricky correctly (because of the circumstances from Ricky’s refusal to go back to his cage and my injuries from his attack he had to be shooed out of the house) and is saddened about the whole episode. I, on the other hand, am relieved that Ricky is out of the house – wild animals need to be respected and not tamed. We (humans) make the mistake of thinking cute little animals can be tamed and when they turn back to their basic instinctual natures we are indignant, and sometimes cruel in response.