To not want to double bag a dead fox

(98 Posts)
marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 09:18:03

I noticed this morning that the fox I saw "sleeping" in my back garden yesterday is still in the same position, and there's quite a lot of flies buzzing around it.

I called my local authority out of hours number, and was told there's no out of hours service for this (fair enough) but that I should double bag the body and leave it on my driveway for street services to pick it up on Monday. Really? It's a full grown fox, and I couldn't even face going out there to look closely.

I've recently separated from H, and have been facing all the challenges I meet head-on, but this seems a step too far for my bravery! Am I being pathetic? Also, H is being rubbish with contact so unless I want to do it in the dark, the kids will be looking over my shoulder while I do it.

hellsbells76 Sat 17-Nov-12 09:21:55

<boak> I wouldn't want to either. But if it's on your property and the council won't do it I guess your only options are: leave it there till it's decomposed, do it yourself, or get someone in privately like rentokil? I sympathise, I get the dry heaves just removing mice from way would I be handling something the size of a rotting fox!

frantic51 Sat 17-Nov-12 09:22:39

No YANBU, foxes are a blardy nuisance. Do you have any neighbours that might help? I'd do it for a neighbour if they were squeamish.

LadyFlumpalot Sat 17-Nov-12 09:23:14

Any neighbours that could help?

Personally I'd bury it. But then I have a really long garden that ends in a wilderness bit, so I appreciate that burying it might not be practical.

hellsbells76 Sat 17-Nov-12 09:24:45

Or do you have any annoying neighbours? Large spade, fling over fence, job done <NOT SERIOUS>

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 09:30:37

Ha ha, don't tempt me!

I live in a terraced house, only a little strip of garden so no space to bury it really. I do have a gardener coming on Thursday - maybe he'll take pity on me and help! Don't really want it rotting there for that long, though.

And I thought them shitting all over the garden was a pita...

frantic51 Sat 17-Nov-12 09:30:38

hellsbells grin

LynetteScavo Sat 17-Nov-12 09:30:40


I really feel for you.

I don't like asking my neighbors for things, but I think I might have to ask for help with this. (I know I couldn't do it)

Flojo1979 Sat 17-Nov-12 09:34:01

YANBU I definitely couldn't go near it.
Maybe call the gardener, tell him what's happened and ask if he could do it, today.
I'd pay a lot of money to get rid of it!

bigTillyMint Sat 17-Nov-12 09:34:05

Blardy foxes! We have so many urban foxes here - shit everywhere, chewed up a lovely new top of mine, but at least no dead ones to dispose of so far.

Got any intrepid teenagers nearby who would help?!

carabos Sat 17-Nov-12 09:40:14

If you leave it for a few days you will be surprised by how quickly other foxes, carrion eaters come and dispose of it to the point where the bones and fur are left which are much easier to deal with.

It will stink though!

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 09:41:20

I get it all here - came back from holiday 2 years ago to find a fox had had 4 cubs under my garden shed. That was slightly more pleasant than this. But yes, the poo drives me mad.

I do have a (slightly nutty) neighbour with a teenage son - she doesn't look the type to be wimpy about this!

SpicyPear Sat 17-Nov-12 09:43:51

I would get a company out asap. One died somewhere near us in the summer and it absolutely stank for about a month. Really ville. We all looked in our gardens but couldn't find the damn thing!

CajaDeLaMemoria Sat 17-Nov-12 09:44:40

You probably won't want to leave it. Unless there is an obvious injury than it probably died of disease (especially out in the open) and it'll attract all types of rodents and insects.

We had a man we would send to customers who found dead animals, so your vet might have something similar, bit they did charge. Otherwise, put two pairs of disposable gloves on, and some bin bags. Lie one bag next to the fox (not open - just how it comes off the strip) and use a spade to move the body onto the bag. Wrap using the rest of the bag, as tightly as you can, pick up and put in two already opened bags.

It's not too bad that way.

BannedKillerFirework Sat 17-Nov-12 09:51:43

I'm laughing at the vision of dead foxes raining down in the neighbours garden.

On a serious note, what is the weather forecast near you? It's meant to freeze here tonight, so I would wait until it's frozen over night, which will make it easier to pick up and keep the flies down. Put rubber gloves on and get it in the bag as quick as you can.

Not nice thing to have to do, I feel for you OP sad

WineGoggles Sat 17-Nov-12 17:24:17

Stick it on Freecycle - amateur taxidermy project wink.

Rumplestiltskine Sat 17-Nov-12 17:36:05

If you do decide to have a go at it yourself, make sure you slide its back end into the bag first so that if anything is "expelled" in the process, it will go into the bag and not all over you/your lawn. I would turn the bag inside out, put my hand inside and use the bag-glove to grab the tail, then pull the fox into the bag and fold the bag down over it. I am used to dealing with this kind of thing though. I managed to bag and move a fully grown Rottweiler by myself once, it was a proud moment...

MrsHoarder Sat 17-Nov-12 17:36:41

If the teenage soon is brave, offer him £20 if he bags it and puts it in his your bin. Shocked you rang the council though, what did you expect?

Mousefunk Sat 17-Nov-12 18:35:47

Poor fox sad

LynetteScavo Sat 17-Nov-12 19:05:42

Poor fox? The fox is dead. Poor OP, I say!

Yes, offer the teenager hard cash. Winner all round.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 19:20:10

Mrshoarder - I googled and some fox society website said to ring your local authority if you had a dead fox in the garden. I have to call them back on Monday so the street cleaning people come and get it from my driveway, so it seems it was the right thing to do to call them.

Talk of things expelling make me think I will definitely try to bribe teenage boy tomorrow. He and his mum were having a right barney about money last night so it does seem win win!

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 19:24:09

And Rumple, the Rottweiler is impressive! I think that's why I'm struggling with the thought - it's the size of a dog, and it looks all muscly and dog-like - for some reason that's making me feel really queasy about moving it.

Merrylegs Sat 17-Nov-12 19:31:32

Actually, taxidermy is not a bad suggestion. My mate is a taxidermist and he is always getting rung up about dead animals needing disposal.

He will almost always come and investigate and take it away and stick it in his freezer. No charge! Def worth looking in your phone book for one in your area.

(Although don't leave it too long. The story of the bloated badger who exploded gangerine-like in his car was really one I wish he'd rather not shared.)

moopoint Sat 17-Nov-12 19:36:33

There was a decapidated duck lying in my front garden a few weeks ago. One of my neighbours must have lifted it about 3 days after I spotted it. There was NO chance I was going near it. I live in a flat btw. It wasn't pleasant, I couldn't stop looking at it which is very weird.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 19:49:22

Merrylegs - thanks for the suggestion. I just looked for local taxidermists, but the nearest was N1 and I am SE London - I'm sure there are hundreds of dead foxes between here and there so it's back to asking neighbour's son.

I'm sure on that Life of Grime tv show they had people to come out and pick up dead animals, and that was central London <grumble>

scarletforya Sat 17-Nov-12 20:06:17

Would it be bad to throw petrol on it and burn it...?

sarahseashell Sat 17-Nov-12 20:44:20

grin scarlet it's getting like that scene from the peep show with the dog
<no help I know>

but obviously YANBU - no-one is likely to come on here and say YABU I'm always double-bagging dead foxes hmm

VerySmallSqueak Sat 17-Nov-12 20:48:49

Put some gloves on and think of something else.

I reckon the thought of doing it will be worse than the actual doing it.

I don't think you can leave it.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 20:52:41

Scarlet - I like the idea, but it's under a 20ft hedge so probably not a great idea! grin

Sarah - it was more I was a bit hmm that that's what the council want me to do - I kind of assumed someone would come round and deal with it without me having to get so hands on!

sarahseashell Sat 17-Nov-12 20:56:11

I agree OP! am shock frankly that the council expect you to do it as it would surely be a potential health hazard? I suppose pest control would dispose of it but would cost you. Nightmare!

scarletforya Sat 17-Nov-12 22:06:43

Aw, Pity about the bush.

Yes Sarah -surely it's mad to expect a member of the public to dispose of it. What about diseases etc...

OP, maybe you could lay down the open bag and push it in with a stick, tie a scarf around your mouth or use a mask if you have one. I wouldn't directly touch the thing under any circumstances though.

Softlysoftly Sat 17-Nov-12 22:12:37

It's just a dead animal you wuss smile

<<wanders out muttering about city folk>>

VerySmallSqueak Sat 17-Nov-12 22:13:35

I thought that with dead animals ,unless its obstructing the highway,it isn't the councils responsibility (rightly or wrongly).

Really,you can do this OP.

Deep breaths and have a wine on standby for when you're done.

TheBigKidsDidIt Sat 17-Nov-12 22:15:41

We had a dead deer (!) in our garden which would be fairly tricky to double bag. It was on a hot bank holiday weekend in August so I phoned the council who referred me to out of hours - when i said I have children, they had someone round in half an hour. This poor poor man had to wear a fluorescent jacket and scrape bits of deer into a bag. i am ashamed to say i failed to help and spectated behind a (closed) window. I would try the council again and make a stink (sorry).

Ahh fuck the hedge, I'd cremate that too! grin

ThatVikRinA22 Sat 17-Nov-12 22:23:34

i would get some rubber gloves on, and use a spade to lift it onto a plastic bin liner if you cannot face picking it up.

then tuck another back over it and pull another on properly. i wouldnt leave it any longer.

<i like foxes, not keen on dead ones though>

lindsell Sat 17-Nov-12 22:25:25

What borough in SE London are you in? We're in lewisham and when we had a dead fox in our garden the council sent someone out within 2hours on a bank holiday weekend to remove it - I was very impressed. The council has other failings but dead fox removal services are good grin

FuckityDuck Sat 17-Nov-12 22:27:28

Think I would rather unashamedly be thinking of the best neighbour to help or phone gardener and ask him to come Monday morning.

nearlyready Sat 17-Nov-12 22:31:54

Surely you can't leave it much longer?

Bribe the teenager!

ConferencePear Sat 17-Nov-12 22:32:28

This will get worse the longer you leave it. Someone suggested rubber gloves which are a good idea. It will be horrible but it won't take more than 15 minutes. Then you can be proud of yourself and have a clear garden. Go for it.

LineRunner Sat 17-Nov-12 22:34:09

If you really need to get this done, try this:

Spread out a large bin bag next the fox, with the bin bag opened as wide as possible. Wearing disposable gloves (carrier bags will do), use another bin bag or thick carrier bag as an extra 'glove' to pick the fox up by its back leg or legs and drop it into the black bin bag. Drop extra 'glove' bag in after fox. Tie it up. Put it into another black bin bag with your disposable gloves.

If the fox has got a bit gloopy you can get a freezing spray from pet shops (for dog poo!) to stiffen it up a bit before you move it. smile

fluffygal Sat 17-Nov-12 22:36:44

I am in SE and one of my old ladies had a dead fox in her garden, council said they will only remove once it is off her land and on their 'property' ie the pavement outside, no special treatment for an 85 year old lady! She had to get her gardener to move it there. Dead foxes really do stink.

ladymariner Sat 17-Nov-12 22:37:38

Good grief, it's a dead fox, that's all. The longer you leave it the worse it will be. Can't believe you honestly expected the council to come out just to shift a dead fox from your garden......

Rubber gloves, a big black bin bag and quick speed of hand is what you need.....poke it into the bag with a stick if you have to, then chuck it in the bin or next doors bin

ZacharyQuack Sat 17-Nov-12 22:38:55

Oh come on. Rubber gloves, spade and bin bags. Harden up.

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 22:39:49

Get a grip woman! What actually is the problem here? It may stink but it will not kill you and it was never a cuddly cute pet.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 22:40:17

I am in Bromley lindsell, and am now annoyed that others have had it dealt with so quickly - I did mention that I had kids, but lady on out of hours line was adamant there was nothing they could do. I know it's not a huge thing but I'm hanging on by my fingertips at the moment, and this is something I really don't need - especially knowing that if I lived a mile down the road it would be sorted by now sad

Will sleep on it and ask neighbour in the morning. Don't think out of hours will change their mind, and I've got a really busy week at work next week so calling back on Monday won't do much good as I won't be there to let them in. I hate being a grown-up!

topbannana Sat 17-Nov-12 22:42:45

OP YANBU but are making matters worse sorry
The council will be very unlikely to come into your garden and pick up the body. They will collect it from you but that is the limit of their involvement.
The longer youleave it the worse and runnier it will get envy
SO..... get thick gloves and something to cover your face (its the smells that get me personally) Get two bin bags (or 10 if yours are at the flimsier end of the market!) Turn the bags inside out as if you were picking up dog poo, approach the fox from behind and grab. Shake a little bit to get the bag(s) a little underneath the body and then go to the other side. Grab the top of the bags and pick them up, allowing the body to slide gracefully and effortlessly inside.
Honestly, the thinking will be worse than the doing unless you leave it too long, in which case the doing will definitely be worse than the thinking!!
Good luck wine

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 22:44:18

Why can't you do this? Are you physically disabled or just squeamish?

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 22:46:13

Paying a council employee to sort this out for an able bodied adult is a ridiculous waste of resources.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 22:48:57

No I'm not physically disabled, I'm just not keen on doing it, especially with my 2 kids no doubt "helping".

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 22:50:34

Ok, I get that you think IABU, I was just going by what the website I found said, and others on this thread have had their council deal with it.

UnrequitedSkink Sat 17-Nov-12 22:50:59

Oh give her a break, she's just split up with her H and it's a smelly dead fox! Ask the teenage son tomorrow OP.

Incidentally, did you notice the name of the taxidermist in N1? If it's the one I know of, they're called Get Stuffed grin

scarletforya Sat 17-Nov-12 22:51:03


Council employees get paid to do a lot less needed things than this....sweeping up leaves in the park for example is hardly a priority really.

AmberLeaf Sat 17-Nov-12 22:52:41

My 16 year old son has said he will do it for you!

We are possibly not that far from you, PM me you area and I'll see if its reachable by bus.

flossy101 Sat 17-Nov-12 22:56:52

Oh god OP I really feel for you! I'm not sure i could do this. Hope you get it sorted. smile

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 23:02:43

I just despair sometimes at stuff like this. Just do it and then pat yourself on the back for coping. It really is no big deal and will teach you and your children that you can and will cope with or without a DP.

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 23:06:02

And if you leave it much longer the rats will find it and thank you for their meal ticket.

ladymariner Sat 17-Nov-12 23:07:16

What do you think is going to happen op? It's just a dead fox. Not a nice thing to deal with but it's hardly going to hurt you, is it. Honestly, the quicker you deal with it the better you'll feel xx

FromEsme Sat 17-Nov-12 23:11:52

Unrequited I was thinking the same! I always laugh when I walk past there.

This has to be the best thread title of the day.

And OP I think you're getting a hard time. I'm not that squeamish, but I would be wary of getting near a dead fox as well. It does have to be done though.

Get yer gloves on tomorrow, get a spade and get scoopin. You'll have that fox double bagged in a jiffy.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 23:15:28

Apart from anything else, I have no-one to take the kids if I were to do it. They are 4 and 2, and the 2 year old in particular would be right in there - I'm not too keen on that.

I have been showing them that we can cope so far - and this will be no different. It's just that my way of coping will involve getting someone in to do it for me grin

VerySmallSqueak Sat 17-Nov-12 23:17:07

I think those of us who can do this sort of thing without bothering about it should count ourselves lucky rather than giving the OP a hard time.

I feel for you OP. But I really think you need to take a deep breath,march yourself out there and do it.We all have to do things at times that we dread or think we can't do - and this is one of those times.

Good luck!

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 23:18:12

Unrequited - it was Get Stuffed! What made me laugh even more was their one review - "unfriendly and surly" or something similar. Sounds like they take the name seriously grin

TinyDancingHoofer Sat 17-Nov-12 23:20:20

I think you need to take a deep breathe and get it done. Really not that much hassle, yes it might smell but it'll smell worse if you leave it.

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 23:22:39

Ok Op your DC are little but are they in bed now?If so do it now while you are here and we can all sound the trumpets to herald your success. Get 2 bin bags some gloves or carrier bags a torch and go for it! Go on do it!!!!

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 23:23:33

Do it !!!

FromEsme Sat 17-Nov-12 23:24:06

Ach, come on now, does she really want to be doing it in the dark? Wait til morning OP when you can get a good look at the big hairy bastard while you decide how to tackle it. Otherwise you're just going to be hacking away in the dark.

ladymariner Sat 17-Nov-12 23:27:04

Hacking???? Crikey Esme, that's going for it grin

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 23:28:12

Slight problem in that I don't have a torch.

And I really cannot be unreasonable not to want to do it in the dark - I'd want to see the maggots/rats/exploding/expelling fox I'm dealing with!

TidyDancer Sat 17-Nov-12 23:28:18

I'm surprised you called the council tbh!

I think you really need to just brace yourself and deal with this, it's not that big of a thing. Shut the DC inside the house, it will be fine for all of five minutes and just do what needs to be done.

marryinhaste Sat 17-Nov-12 23:29:10

X post esme grin

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 23:29:28

Fair do's OK put the telly on first thing for the DCs and while they are pre-occupied just get out there. If they catch you tell them that sometimes being a grown up means doing stuff that they can't help with so go back in and watch more TV

dearcathyandclare Sat 17-Nov-12 23:33:46

I doubt there will be maggots in November. You can do this you know OP .You will have dealt with worse recently by the sounds of it.Tap into that knowledge.

CasperGutman Sun 18-Nov-12 08:51:09

OP, you should really get a torch. What if there was a power cut? It's a safety issue -- how would you ensure the safety of your kids if you couldn't see anything?

shockers Sun 18-Nov-12 09:05:09

If there are flies, there will be maggots sooner or later.... I'd get there sooner. I saw a dead fox at the side of the lane (well I smelt it first, from about 200 yards away), and it's stomach was a mass of maggots. You don't want to wait til that happens to pick it up!

I'd ask a neighbour too, are there any burly fellas who might want to show you how capable they are?

VerySmallSqueak Sun 18-Nov-12 09:10:52

Today is the day,if it's to be out bagged up for collection tomorrow.

Let us know when/if you've done it.I'm secretly hoping you prove to yourself that you can do it,but whichever way....

ratbagcatbag Sun 18-Nov-12 09:12:50

I'm in the offer a teenager twenty quid category, there are something's people can just not face even if others can. I've picked up
snakes that have grown men legging it, (at reptile houses etc) but dead creatures especialky as big as foxes would not happen. smile

ScrambledSmegs Sun 18-Nov-12 09:15:23

grin Yes, the owner of Get Stuffed could probably do with working on his people skills. I wandered in there one day when it was actually open (it never is normally) and he seemed most put out. Think he locked the door behind me grin

There's a sign in there saying 'Not all the animals on display are for hire'. Which means some are. DH and I were considering having the creepiest table decorations ever at our wedding for a while wink

Good luck today with bagging your dead fox, OP.

marryinhaste Sun 18-Nov-12 12:55:44

Problem solved - my neighbour came round and did it, and wouldn't even take a bottle of wine for her trouble.

It looked easy enough - no exploding or expelling - it was just stiff. I did inwardly <boak> a bit as she tried to bend him in half to fit in the bag grin

I feel I've let you all down by not doing it myself!

hellsbells76 Sun 18-Nov-12 13:08:56

Problem solved and yay for nice neighbours! I take back my 'flinging over fence' suggestion then.

ratbagcatbag Sun 18-Nov-12 13:10:31

Was a bottle of wine at Xmas for her then and a nice card. Sorted. smile

ladyfirenze Sun 18-Nov-12 13:12:14

where are you? I'll come and get it.

ladyfirenze Sun 18-Nov-12 13:12:34

oh bugger too late

marryinhaste Sun 18-Nov-12 13:22:46

Thanks for the offer, anyway ladyfirenze!

I feel very mean for calling my neighbour strange at the start of the thread (she does like to sing country and western songs very loudly when drunk - usually til 2am!) I will buy her a nice bottle of something for Christmas.

AvonCallingBarksdale Sun 18-Nov-12 13:35:08

Thank goodness for that! I really felt for you reading the thread, there's no way on this earth I could ever have bagged up a dead fox can't even pick up a cat without heaving

marryinhaste Sun 18-Nov-12 13:38:11

Mumsnet - the only place you can be made to feel bad for not man-handling a dead fox grin

scarletforya Sun 18-Nov-12 14:39:22

Aw, what a great ending! Your neighbour sounds like a sweetheart!

Londonista1975 Sun 18-Nov-12 14:52:40

I completely empathise. Even seeing them walking about freaks me out a little so I know I could never touch a dead one. I would pay someone a serious amount of money to do it for me, if it came down to it.

Glad you got it sorted.

UnrequitedSkink Sun 18-Nov-12 15:59:12

"Mumsnet - the only place you can be made to feel bad for not man-handling a dead fox"

I just snorted tea gringringrin

VerySmallSqueak Sun 18-Nov-12 17:16:17

Just glad it's sorted marry.

Perhaps you just need to start with a dead bird/mouse or two and work your way up!

sarahseashell Sun 18-Nov-12 17:21:52

shock start with a dead mouse/bird or two and work your way up?! shock
whatever next! build up to a dead cow or horse perhaps?
this rates as one of the bizarrest mn threads ever!

boomting Sun 18-Nov-12 18:35:34

Put a bin bag in your wheelie bin, opened out a bit like you put one in the kitchen bin, then wheel bin over to fox, use a shovel to move fox into bin, then bag it? At least it would allow you to remain a couple of foot away from it . . .

MonaLotte Sun 18-Nov-12 21:50:52

I came back to check the status of the ex fox. Glad to see it all got sorted!

marryinhaste Sun 18-Nov-12 22:29:22

VerySmall - I'll have you know I've picked up many a dead bird/mouse when I used to have cats. They're easy - carrier bag as a glove and pick up. It was the thought of trying to pull it by the tail (as was suggested by some here) and the tail just coming off if it was it was, it all came up in one stiff piece.

So as I've already graduated from the beginner level maybe a vole or a small badger could be the next step? Maybe I could get enrolled on one of those "face your fears" courses where I have to pick up increasingly sized dead animals?!

hellsbells76 Sun 18-Nov-12 22:42:57

Just wanted to say that you sound marvellous OP grin

marryinhaste Sun 18-Nov-12 22:52:19

Awww, thanks hellsbells. It makes a lovely change to the words stbxh uses to describe me! <whole other thread>

And thanks to everyone for helping me see the humour in the situation. I coped, I didn't consider calling stbxh to help, and I even talked to a neighbour (not a common occurrence round this way!)

hmc Sun 18-Nov-12 23:07:08

Can't see the problem - I've had to remove a dead rat from my lawn, and a couple of years ago my decapitated cockerel (the dog got it). Man up

Horopu Mon 19-Nov-12 03:25:43

I have moved up from disposing of dead mice (fling them into a hedge) to dead rats (double bag and put in bin) after lots of screaming when I found in in the pile of towels to now burying the possums I trap.

I think you have done a great job OP.

VerySmallSqueak Mon 19-Nov-12 16:06:57

<considers starting a small business as a dead animal clearance desensitisation counsellor>


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