For almost 24 hours, the whole world was transfixed on the harrowing journey of a little raccoon as it scaled the 25 floor UBS building in Minneapolis, MN. The little creature had apparently been scared by some well meaning maintenance workers who tried to guide it off of a building ledge and it had bolted upward. Apparently, a raccoon's instinct is to climb up when scared and off it went. Stopping to rest along the way it climbed (reversing course one time to go back down for five floors) the entire skyscraper until it reached the top and a can of tasty cat food in a humane trap left by wildlife rescue personnel as bait.
I am no a raccoon lover since they killed five of my beautiful Koi fish but I had to realize that they were just doing what comes natural for them. Raccoons are now everywhere and don't really mind the interaction with humans or domesticated animals (unless they are rabid as some are). Being fascinated by this little raccoon's tenacity (probably very scared) and perseverance, people everywhere watched and cheered. Papers in Australia and Malaysia even covered herclimb. After the rescue, it was determined that the raccoon was a female and about one year old.
I could hardly watch her climb as she was so tiny against the skyscraper and I have a little fear of heights. I could not see how she could attach herself to the stucco-like wall of the building. So I looked up raccoons to see what their claws are like and how she was doing it. I found out that they have very strange little feet almost looking like hands with long fingers and strong, non-retractable claws on the end. That's what enabled this little raccoon to scale the skyscraper (or to escape an enemy if threatened).
A primarily nocturnal animal, raccoons will travel and scavenge by night. Many a homeowner has been surprised to find a raccoon politely eating with their "hands" the pet food that had been left out all night on a convenient back porch.
I believe, with all the bad news in the media or on the Internet, people loved cheering for this little creature as she made her way up. Her sheer grit and determination captured the hearts of people everywhere as she finished her "mission Impossible". It was a sweet relief from all the bad news that we live with every day and I am relieved that the little raccoon made it to the top, was rescued and humanely released to a wildlife sanctuary to live out her next years in a healthier and safer environment than on a skyscraper in the middle of a busy metropolis. Hooray for "Little Raccoon". Maybe we can learn a little bit from her "I can do it" attitude.