Since we care about the fate of adorable animals in trouble, and since raccoons can, given relative youth and the right lighting, be considered somewhat adorable (especially if they’re not tipping over your garbage cans or swinging through your yard Tarzan-style to ruin your carefully tended hydrangeas), we feel it’s our duty to report, via the New York Times‘ City Room blog, that a raccoon found dead in Prospect Park last week has turned out to be rabid. Oh, dear.
It’s been a bad year for raccoons in the borough. There was that hapless fellow who ended up dismembered in a kitchen drawer, if you recall. And those other raccoons threatened by a Greenwood Heights electric fence and the promise of being “kicked in the ass” if caught. And, you know, just the life of a raccoon in general, scrambling for trash, being hated by the public, and those unsightly under-eye circles that no makeup can cover up!
The good news: At just one felled vicious disease-ridden raccoon (or two, depending on how you count, since 1992), Prospect Park has a long way to go to beat Central Park, where the rabid raccoons number in the hundreds and, but for vaccinations, might have dominated the rabid screaming children, rabid spandex-clad cyclists, and rabid disco roller derby participants all but completely.