This Thanksgiving, we decided to check back in with our old pals Rachel S. Raccoon and Melvin Mouse, to see what they are most thankful for this year. They invited us to their Friendsgiving dinner, and we were able to get an inside look at what they are all most thankful for this holiday season.

“Well, you all know it’s the time of year that we go around and share what we’re thankful for,” said Rachel. “Who wants to start? Melvin?”

“Aw, whaddaya always gotta pick on me first for?” Mel squeaked. “Alrighty. Well, this year I’ve gotta say I’m most thankful for my wonderful family. I’ve got 40 new sons and daughters, and about 1000 new grandkiddos, so we’re feeling very blessed.” Mel pauses as the other animals congratulate him on the new additions to the family. “I’m also pretty thankful for the people who haven’t called Advanced Wildlife Control, as we’ve found some amazing houses to party in this past year. We’ve had some good times.” There is laughter all around the table at that, and some nods of agreement. Mel then turns to his left, where Sammy P. (short for peanut) Squirrel sits eyeing the large bowl of black walnuts across the table.

“Walnuts. What?” Sammy chitters, starting in surprise. “Oh, is it my turn? I’m thankful for bird feeders, tree branches that hang over houses, open soffits, and warm attics. And walnuts. It was a great year for them. Can someone please pass me that bowl?” Stella Rose Skunk, sitting next to Sammy, rolls her eyes as she passes the bowl over.

“I’m thankful that my six wonderful babies are all grown and out on their own now,” Stella says, smiling. “And I’m thankful that I found such a wonderful deck to raise them under to keep them safe. I don’t think the humans had any idea we were under there!” Again, there is laughter around the table. The table turns to Stella’s neighbor, Walter “Digger” Woodchuck, who has been sound asleep since I arrived. Stella gives him a shove, but he simply snores and rolls over.

“Typical Digger,” says Patrick O. Possum on Walter’s other side, “he always sleeps through our holiday get-togethers!” Everyone nods in agreement, making me wonder why he is even invited. “I’ll go ahead and say that I’m most thankful for the fact that humans seem to leave their garbage everywhere. Man, do I love me some moldy old pizza!”

“Don’t we know it,” Rachel laughs, as Patrick grins sheepishly. “You’re in for a treat today, though!” There are cheers from both Stella and Patrick as Rachel disappears into the other room briefly and returns with what is, clearly, a very old pizza box giving off a very pungent odor. Rachel leaves and returns a few more times, with other food items, seeds, berries, nuts, fruit, some large grubs (that I’m not sure how she managed to find as they are very much out of season) and some other human leftovers that are clear favorites for certain members of the gathering.

“What about you Rachel?” I ask after she sits back down. “You haven’t said what you’re thankful for yet.”

“I’ve got a lot to be thankful for this year,” she says. “But I think the thing I’m most thankful for is the uncapped chimney I found this year. Those really are the best places I’ve ever come across to make sure my babies grow up safe. I know Advanced Wildlife Control put a cap on the one I found last year, so I was worried if I was going to be able to find a safe place this year. Thankfully, the home I found had the perfect chimney and no cap in sight.”

Give Advanced Wildlife Control a call to make sure wild animals like our friends Rachel, Melvin, Sammy, Stella Rose, Digger, and Patrick have a little less to be thankful for next year!