15 May 2010

Losses and Lessons: Dog vs. Raccoon vs. Jaguar

VEHICLE COVERED: Jaguar E-Type Series II

WHAT WENT WRONG: The car’s owner lived near a wildlife preserve. One day the dog went into the garage through his doggy door and found a raccoon already inside. The frightened wild animal headed for high ground: unfortunately, in this case, that meant the roof of the E-Type. An epic struggle between dog and raccoon ensued. The biggest casualty, however, was the Jag.

DAMAGE: Almost every panel on the car showed claw and scratch marks from the dog trying to get to the raccoon, and from the raccoon trying to fend him off.

LOSS: Most of the trim and lighting, and even some glass, had to be removed from the car for repairs. Ultimately it needed a complete repainting.

LESSON: Storage facilities need to be secure. If you insist on letting your dog use the garage like a doghouse, make sure he’s the only creature that can come and go. The raccoon made easy use the doggy door, as could any number of wild animals – especially if you’re living next to wildlife preserve.

The owner could also have mitigated the damage by covering his vehicle while it was in the garage. The scratches wouldn’t have been quite so severe if the nails had to go through a couple layers of vinyl or plastic.

BOTTOM LINE: Making sure a storage facility is secure requires more than putting a lock on the door. Thieves aren’t the only ones who can hurt your collector car; wild animals can find a way in and wreak havoc on your vehicle. And if you insist on making the garage a doghouse, find another home for your other pet – your collector car.

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