Even urban wildlife needs a spa day.
A refreshing video of a raccoon enjoying a shower on a hot summer day is making a splash on social media, courtesy of a young Montreal resident and his kiddie pool.
"Yeah buddy, the raccoon is taking a shower in your (kiddie pool)," Elena Parial explained to her son in the video, as the animal appeared to bathe. "He undid the plug and he's now taking a full-on shower."
Judging by the 47-second clip posted July 5, the raccoon was probably hot and thirsty as it drank plenty of shower water.
Unfortunately, the critter's paws damaged the pool's plug while yanking it out: "Luckily, our son's splash table wasn't a splurge price-wise," said Parial.
Naturally, the shower-loving raccoon has made a splash on social media.
"So cute. Sorry about the plug," stated one Facebook fan of the well-groomed raccoon.
Animal takes shower to beat the heat
Parial, who lives in Montreal's Côte-Des-Neiges—Notre-Dame-De-Grâce borough, told MTL Blog the raccoon has been frequenting her back deck for about six months.
"He had been visiting us infrequently before but we became more aware of him as of December 28, 2020, when he attacked our compost bin in a particularly aggressive and messy manner," she said.
Parial said the raccoon may have found a "lady friend" by the looks of a subsequent video posted July 7, which shows a pair of critters frolicking playfully on her patio furniture.
"I don't have irrefutable evidence that the shower attracted the lady friend, but this is the first time we've seen him with a friend," she said. "It's a gross assumption but it makes for a good social media post."
A possible 'lady friend'
Parial said she does not mind the raccoon taking up residence near her home, as it's been much less destructive than the squirrels who "have eaten [their] patio lights and torn numerous holes in [their] patio furniture," but she does have some concerns.
"I'm worried that we'll unknowingly stroll onto our deck not knowing he's sleeping there and find ourselves in a situation," she said. "More importantly, I worry my son may find himself in a situation because he's got a keen toddler curiosity."
She's also afraid the raccoon could lose its fear of humans. "Currently, he scurries when my husband taps on our patio door. He scurries away and knows we want our space. I'm not sure how long this is going to last before he figures out we're just scared of him and any pests or diseases he may carry."
Kiddie pool has become a water source
Bill Dowd, founder of Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control, said Parial's kiddie pool has probably become a water source for the "highly intelligent, very inquisitive" creature.
"My recommendation to the homeowner would be to obviously remove that water source," he said.
"If I was a betting man," he continued, "I would bet that if you see the raccoon that frequently on her deck, I would suspect it's probably living underneath the deck or maybe in her attic or in her chimney or underneath the shed out back."
He said the pair in the video are probably enjoying a platonic relationship as it's not raccoon mating season, which runs from January to June, so they won't be making raccoon babies together anytime soon.
"From the behaviour that those videos show me, I would say they're juveniles are just kind of being teenagers," he said.
"Getting into trouble, being rambunctious and kind of wrestling and fooling around."