Like many people, my family has had a couple of wild/undesirable animal visitors over the years.

When I was a kid, my grandmother called my dad in a panic because she had just encountered a rat "the size of a Volkswagen" in her basement laundry room. He needed to come over right away and "take care" of it, or she was never going to do laundry again, assuming that she didn't just set fire to the house to get rid of it first.

He did go over, and he...well, let's just say...terminated it. Although grateful, grandma never felt quite comfortable alone in the laundry room after that.

As an adult, my own encounter began with the discovery of a semi-trashed garage. Things had been spilled all over the place, stuff knocked off shelves, etc. It looked like someone had had a temper tantrum.

As I pondered what might have caused this mess, I happened to see a tail disappearing under my car. The tail looked like it belonged to the world's largest rat. Seriously. I'll admit to being more than a little freaked out, as was my family. Being that my dad had some experience in this department, I called him for advice.

"Well, I just took a .22 rifle down to grandma's basement and waited for the rat in the dark," he told me. "I sat in the dark until I heard movement, turned on my flashlight, and there it was. So I blasted it in the head with the rifle. That fixed the problem. Good thing I flipped on the flashlight when I did, too. The (expletive) was almost on top of me."

I thanked him for his excellent suggestion, hung up, and decided there was absolutely no way I was going to do that. So, I set up some rat traps that night, and hoped they would do the trick.

The traps worked...but they didn't catch the world's biggest rat. Instead, they caught the world's angriest possum. Snarling, hissing, furious, etc. This thing made it clear to me that by placing traps instead of laying out more food and stuff to spill, I had gone and made this thing personal.

Without getting into too much gory detail, the situation was resolved, but I'm certain not to the angry possum's went on to freak out St. Peter at the Pearly Gates.

With those stories in mind, take a look at what happened to a lady named Tara McVicar when she discovered...visitors (some of Tara's language may be NSFW):

And, as long as we're talking wildlife, you might recall the famous touring black bear of last year. Multiple folks around the stateline reported their encounters with the bruin who seemed to be on a sightseeing trip of northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin. There were warnings not to approach the bear because...well, bears can be quite short-tempered, and they don't really warm up to strangers all that well. Thankfully, no one was injured.

And, thankfully this guy (and his recording of the encounter) made it through a scary experience as well:

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