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Devon Malcolm

When Animals Attack

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Following on from this:-

And the now legendary story of Ralphy being attacked by a cow, what are some other stories of being accosted by creatures do we have?

When I was 19, a pigeon once flew into the back of my head. I thought someone had thrown a brick at me.

Also, when I was about 5, we went to Anglesey for a holiday and my parents had me pose for a photo with a monkey - one of those seaside traditions I think they thankfully did away with. I'm especially grateful as the cunt scratched my shoulder and arm.

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A baby bird had fallen out of it's nest and landed in our front garden. It was a fairly big bird but without a feather on it's head, like a tiny grotesque vulture. 

Because of it's size and baldness a 16 year old Joe thought it was just a old bird that was hopping about on the lawn for fun. I left the house for my first ever job interview and got dive bombed by the parents. I had three talon marks down my forehead and was sweating like a bastard having ran wildly down the street in a mad panic. Still got the job. 

 

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I spent a big portion of my childhood years growing up in America and I used to quite enjoy a spot of fishing in my youth. When I was about ten years old, I was fishing in a local lake and was excited to have caught something quite early on. I reeled in my catch without much of a struggle only to find out I hadn't snagged a fish  but a water moccasin instead. I absolutely shat myself, chucked the rod and ran as fast as my legs would take me.

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A dog I used to look after savaged both my hands a few years ago. He was a surprisingly strong Welsh Terrier and a lovely boy, but a bit inbred, and I was far from the first person he'd put in hospital. He bit his owners multiple times, and even bit someone at his own birthday party when they reached for the buffet, leaving them bleeding. He belonged to my extended family, and in the 18 months they had him, left behind dozens of stories of his behaviour; jumping a garden wall into a picnic and eating a child's birthday cake; chasing an old lady with Tesco bags full of chops all the way across a field and not letting her leave; disappearing when they stayed in a dog-friendly B&B only to be found in the owners' bed, laid between them, refusing to move for the rest of the day, to the point they stopped letting dogs stay there altogether. One time when walking him, I was stopped by a blind old lady who asked if I could help her cross a busy road, and thankfully she couldn't see him trying to a) bite her b) take her white stick, and c) drag all three of us into oncoming traffic. Another time, he reared up and barked at someone cycling past causing them to fall off their bike. When I showed up to take him out, he'd get so excited, he'd roll onto his back and piss straight into air, all over the floor and straight into his own face.

He'd bitten me twice before that day; once when I was checking to see if he'd got sick on his whiskers after eating some vomit out of the gutter, and another time when I left a tunnock's tea cake on the table and came back from the toilet to find he'd gotten up there and was eating it, foil and all. 

The final time, he was eating a dishcloth. I mean eating, halfway down his throat. I got one half off him by tossing treats down the other end of the kitchen and putting it in the bin. The second time, when he realised what I'd done, he ran across and bit both my hands half a dozen times in revenge. Then he sat there with his tail wagging all "we going for a walk now, Millard mate?" His fangs went straight through my right hand, Christ-style, and badly bruised my left, and I was fucked for months. Didn't even have the strength or dexterity to push my antibiotic tablets out of the foil for about 3 weeks. His male owner was home that day, having felt really ill and stayed home from work. A few days later he'd discover he'd suffered a heart attack. But that day, when I was bleeding all over his kitchen, he fished my phone out of my pocket to call for help, and his trousers fell down. Right down round his ankles.

The dog went to a rescue centre, where he would bite most of the people who worked there and was considered beyond help, but in a happy ending, he really, genuinely did go and live on a farm, where he no doubt scared the cow that went onto attack Ralphy.

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I owned a gerbil for about twenty minutes once. Some kid down the street didn't want it so I took it home, cage and all. Was just convincing my Mam to let me keep it when it bit me and drew blood and I had to take it back.

One of the funniest things I've ever seen, once we confirmed he was OK, was a ram chasing my Grandad and butting him clean over a fence at a local market. The closing sequence to Carry on Camping always makes me howl laughing just at the reminder. 

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A goose bit me on the nipple in a pub garden when I was 4 or 5. Camping with my mum and dad in West Wittering, we went to a pub called The Old House at Home. It had a climbing frame, a slide and some farm animals to keep the kids occupied. A goose took exception to my presence, and bit me on the nipple. Crying and upset I ran to my parents, and my dad, who was pissing himself, took me back to the goose to tell it off, which I did. "Don't you ever do that to anyone again!" I sternly warned it. I bet a million pounds it did. 

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Had never been stung by a jellyfish before, went to Malta two years ago for a week and got stung on three separate bastarding occasions. Two were pretty mild but the one I got on my muffin top felt like I’d been shot, left a mark that hung around for months. 
 

And no, noone pissed on me. Unfortunately. 

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My dad was playing cricket in some village somewhere, and me and my brother were kicking a football about. It was one of those shitty floater balls, so obviously it flew over a fence nearby. I'd told my dad and he was like "go get it then you pansy" or some equally delightful insult insinuating my lack of masculinity, so I clambered over the fence. Didn't look before I leapt, obviously, but grabbed the ball and chucked it over. At that moment, two fucking rottweilers come barrelling out at me, and I shit myself and start screaming whilst trying to scramble over the fence. What little upper body strength I had deserted me as I screamed for my dad to come and help me. He isn't the tallest, but was able to hang over the fence and grab my arms to try and pull me up as the dogs were nipping at my heels. As I turned and saw the woman who owned the dog stood in her doorway, I begged her to call the dogs off. She did not, instead telling me "shouldn't have climbed over my fence should you?" My dad, as useful as ever, told her to fuck off, but I was still hanging by my arms off the fence. I eventually got pulled over the fence and my dad gave me a clip round the earhole. Not sure why. 

 

Fucking hate rottweilers. 

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As a kid I accidentally disturbed a wasp's nest in a park while eating an iced lolly and then ran around with a swarm of furious wasps buzzing around my head like a cartoon character.

I got stung a bunch of times on the head and tongue, because I'd been eating a lolly they were all in my mouth like Candyman.

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My next door neighbour used to keep ferrets in a big hutch in his back garden and he came knocking at ours one day to say one had got out and was in our yard. I don't know why he didn't just come get it, but instead asked me if I could catch it and hand it over the fence to him. I put my slippers on and went to find it and managed to corner it, then as it tried to bolt, I put a foot out to block it and the little fucker buried it's teeth into my toe. Old Graham next door watched over the fence as I booted the side of our shed three or four times to try and dislodge his bastard ferret from my foot. I managed to grab it round the middle and pass it to him and he just tossed it back in the pen and went inside after suggesting I get some decent work boots if I'm going to be handling animals while my toe bled all over my lovely fleece lined slippers.

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I went near a swan and it didn’t break my arm.

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This was more a psychological attack.

In the mid-2000s, I got my first car - a Ford Fiesta slightly older than I was, courtesy of my uncle. It handled like a tractor and looked like a bin, but it worked and that made a difference at the time.

One morning, i go out and check under the bonnet before going into work. I'm a bit bleary and pre-coffee, so when I see a nest with three speckled eggs in the middle of the engine, my first thought was that someone was playing a prank. They looked that much like cadbury mini-eggs. It was actually that a bird had flown up into the engine from underneath and made a nest over a weekend or something.

I didn't know what to do, so I lifted it out carefully and put it nearby, raised up - I knew that moving the nest would probably cause the eggs to be abandoned, but I didn't have much choice.

A week later, I check under my bonnet again and there's another nest, just like the first one. Except this time, there are thorns around the edge to stop me from lifting it out as easily.

Not only was I clearly in some kind of battle with some bird, but I was clearly losing.

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I got stung by a wasp at Blackpool Zoo when I was six. 

The staff put some antiseptic cream on the sting, and it got recorded in the accident log as "Cause: Animal", which my Mum thought was hilarious and made reference to for probably the next year.

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Had a couple of attacks from wasps above the odd sting. When I was 6 at primary school we were playing on the field in the summer near the top end of it. Happened to be right near a wasp nest and several flew up my little school boy shorts stinging all around what would later become a very precious area. 

Second time was in my teens. We used to play cricket on a patch of grass up from my house with other kids. A sycamore tree was the stumps behind us. We had seen the wasps but didn't know where they were. I was fielding near the bowler when he hits the tree full on, a wasp flies out straight in my eye line dead centre flies towards me and stings me between my eyes. Didn't go near anyone else was like a fucking sniper attack. Probably because I was the fat sweaty one. I swear to this day my face is less symmetrical that it used to be. 

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Cycling along the River Clyde side at Shawfield. Used to be a traveller site where the new Police HQ is. I'm cycling back into the City Centre, two Alsation dogs come pounding out the site. One grabs onto one leg and the other grabs the other. I'm cycling along trying to find a stairs I can exit. I'm cycling along with these two fuckers biting my legs, bashing my bike trying to rip my throat out if I hit the deck. Cycling along frantically then they suddenly stop and freeze and just calmly walk back to their site. I've still got the scarring and it was over a decade ago.

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