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Raccoon makes a surprise appearance in Florida woman's Christmas tree

Raccoon in Christmas tree
Posted at 9:39 AM, Dec 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-14 13:31:56-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A Florida woman was shocked by an early-morning visitor that had made herself at home in her Christmas tree — a raccoon.

Early Thursday morning, at about 4:15 a.m., Aubrey Iacobelli was woken up by her dog growling.

"I have a doggy door and my dog sleeps right in front of that dog door. I hear her going in and out all night. I wake up and I hear her barking outside," Iacobelli said.

She asked her Amazon Alexa to turn on the lights, and saw her dog was staring at the Christmas tree and barking.

"I just knew that there was something there that shouldn't have been there. I see a furry body in the Christmas tree," she said.

She grabbed a frying pan to try to get the animal — which she thought was a cat — out of her tree.

"I didn't want to hurt the animal. I just wanted it outside of the house," she said,

That's when the raccoon finally came out of the tree and revealed itself.

Iacobelli and her dog spotted the raccoon on the side of the tree and the dog jumped towards it, knocking over the tree.

Warning: The video below contains some explicit language.

"The raccoon ran away from freedom. Jumped on my chandelier where it swung there for like 30 minutes," she said.

After chasing the raccoon around her house for an hour, it finally went back outside by using the dog door it had used to enter the house.

Iacobelli says her advice to others in a similar situation is to call Animal Control, and just have a sense of humor about the situation.

This story was originally published by Savanah Resnick on WPTV in Palm Beach, Florida.