Sarasota, Florida—Woody Woodward’s pet parrot Murphy meant the world to him. Not only had he owned the African Grey for 20 years, the bird also saw Woodward through the loss of his wife to cancer a few years ago.
But last Friday, in a freak attack, a rabid raccoon attacked the bird as it sat perched in the garage. Woodward says his Pembroke Welsh Corgi jumped into the fray to save the bird. But it was too late.
Murphy died a few days later at the vet’s home.
“I had him for 20 years,” Woodward choked through tears. “They’re like a child.”
Woodward contacted the Sarasota County Health Department, and the raccoon was exterminated. But Woodward was disappointed that health officials didn’t hand out notices or talk to neighbors about the incident.
“We’ve love to do that, but we don’t have enough funding or staffing,” said Quentin Clark, spokesperson for the Sarasota County Health Department.
Janie Porter, Tampa Bay’s 10 News