electronic dooflotchies

We’ve been having a few problems with the feral cats in the neighborhood coming up onto the porch, freaking out our own outside cats, eating all the cat food and generally making a mess of things.We’ve also had raccoons and skunks showing up lately, so I decided to investigate devices that would cause these creatures to decide our front porch was a bad thing waiting to happen.

I found these electronic dooflotchies that have strobe lights and a sonic squeel when a creature moves in front of them. They looked pretty cool, were fairly inexpensive and were solar powered and since I always forget to change batteries  solar power makes sense as I don’t have to turn on the sun.

Anyway, I ordered two of them sometime last month and totally forgot that I had until they turned up on my doorstep via UPS last night. Now I wonder why the UPS guy always appears after 6 pm?  Does he LIKE dealing with steps in the dark?  I always fail to turn on the porch lights until something sets off the dogs in a barking frenzy and this poor man always seems to trip and make the dogs bark.  You would think he’d have better planning skills for dark porches.

This almighty huge box was sitting on the porch last night so I dragged it into the house and started to open it. It had around 14 bazillion feet of tape holding it together and I couldn’t find the scissors to open it so I used a letter opener. That didn’t work too well as it only took off one inch of the tape then broke so I found some toenail clippers. They worked for a minute but ultimately failed to get the box open.

I figured it was time for the real deal and went into the kitchen for a butcher knife. (I was a bit frustrated at this point).  George wandered on through the living room right as I was digging through the knife drawer and said “Suze, what’s in the box?”…….well I don’t know……I only ordered something, how am I supposed to know what it was?  so I said “I don’t know dear………I’m looking for a knife to open it” He said “why don’t ya just pull this string?”  STRING?   what string?  so I wander back into the living room and there is my beloved but exceedingly irritating husband yanking a string across the box top. Oh, THAT string.  Ok, so I failed to really look at the box before trying to open it.

After pulling all kinds of plasticine peanuts out of the box (boy did the dogs like throwing those all around the room!) and pulling out tons of newspapers we found two small boxes. It was the sonic-animal-deterrant thingys….yea! no more raccoons skunks and/or feral cats!  George was unimpressed, shook his head and said “oh Suze” like I had done something weird! honestly.   I wonder why he has so little faith in my abilities to find usefull electronics?

I got the things out of their boxes, put them together with a minimum of irritation (directions were japanese) and went outside to put them in the yardand nothing happened. Back to the instructions., and the first thing that caught my eyes was “solar”……oh yeah, sunlight!  crap it was already dark. How to get them to work with no sun?  OK, I am creative so I got out the flashlight, turned it on and shone it directly onto the solar thingy that soaks up sunlight to make things work panel, and figured it would only take a minute or so. I then took it into a closet to see if it would work yet. After all, the closet was dark and it seemed like a good idea at the time.

George wandered through the room, saw the faint light coming from the closet and yanked the door open which scared the tar outta me and I fell backwards into a coat. I finally managed to pull myself from the back of the closet and said “why’d you scare me like that?”  George, (bless his heart) said “I would have scared you differently if I had known you were in here” He then said, “don’t you think those would work better if you put them outside hun?”    Well yea, they probably would.

So I took them out to place them in the front yard…….after setting them into the ground on their little stakes, I wondered how long it would be before a critter came by and they worked. As I sat there staring at them I thought, I can test them (it was getting cold after all) so I waved my hand in front of one to see what would happen.

Nothing. I got up and walked in front of the danged thing and lights started flashing and a high pitched whine started up. Dogs down the street started to howl which set off my two idiot dogs howling and the feral cats were all lined up across the street laughing at me. I was pretty sure there was a raccoon up in the tree next to me selling tickets to the show. It sounded like the end of the world and the animals were taking over!

The neighbors started coming outside to see what was happening ….several start yelling suggestions on how to shut the danged thing up….others were simply enjoying the show…….meantime, I am trying to find a shut off switch to make this thing stop……..the more I tried the more I moved and the more noise and flashing of lights!  After somewhere around five minutes (felt like several hours) George came outside, looked at the thing, leaned over and touched it……………..silence.  HOW do men DO that?

The solar operated sonic animal deterrent thingys are both securely wrapped up and in the garbage cans . I wonder what I can find online to scare animals away?

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