How Long to Wait Before Cleaning a Squirrel
Before cleaning a dead squirrel, you need to remove the back legs. You also need to cut the animal’s hair and remove the creutzfeldt-jakob disease virus. When determining how long to wait before cleaning a squirrel, you should always judge by smell. If you cannot detect the scent of creutzfeldt-jakob disease, you should not use it as a source of food.
Removing the back legs of a dead squirrel
The first step to removing the back legs of a dead squirrel is to wet the fur. With your dominant hand, make an incision under the back legs and along the base of the tailbone. With your other hand, cut the rest of the skin and meat from the back of the animal. The neck and head can be left intact. Pull the back legs of the dead squirrel straight up, pulling them upwards.
After removing the back legs, you need to separate the internal organs. Then, you need to separate the muscles and bones from the rib cage, pelvic bone, and intestines. If the squirrel is male, you can remove the penis and gonads. In the case of a female, the penis and gonads will be visible. Once you have separated these two organs, you can start field dressing the dead squirrel.
Getting rid of the hair
First, make sure that the meat is cool before starting the skinning process. If you’re skinning for the first time, you can easily remove the squirrel’s fur by brushing it off. Alternatively, you can cut off the tail at the joint and twist the animal’s tail to break the joint. When removing the skin, remember to remove all the hair that’s attached to the back legs.
Squirrels can suffer from patches of baldness, which can be due to an inherited gene or an illness. These patches are not diseased, but they may have fungal infections. Infections in squirrels can be cured by giving the animals nutritional support and allowing them to regain their hair. If the hair is lost from the scalp, you can provide a raw coconut oil for them to eat. The coconut contains Lauric Acid, which is anti-fungal.
Knowing when a squirrel is done
There are a few steps that you need to take before you can safely clean a squirrel. Keeping your knife in one place is an important step. When opening the squirrel, you need to be aware that its guts will spill out. Make sure to lift the squirrel’s head to free the heart and lungs, then use your knife to twist them out. Save the kidneys and liver. Then use your kitchen shears to split the pelvis and remove the poop chute. Make sure to keep ice on hand to cool the squirrel.
Squirrel droppings are usually narrower than those of rats and are much longer than the ones of humans. Moreover, they are carriers of parasites. Always use protective gear when cleaning up squirrel droppings to avoid inhaling the odor or becoming ill. In case you do manage to handle a dead squirrel, you can contact your local wildlife removal company to dispose of the body in a safe manner.
Getting rid of the creutzfeldt-jakob disease virus
Researchers don’t know why people keep eating squirrel brains, but they know that the brains contain a high risk of infection from the Creutzfeldt-Jakobe disease virus. In 1997, doctors in Kentucky warned against eating brains from infected squirrels. In that same year, eleven people were diagnosed with non-variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. In each case, the patients ate brain tissue from a squirrel.
The symptoms of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease are similar to those of mad-cow disease, but they can be different from each other. A squirrel brain contains the Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease virus, a form of encephalitis. In humans, the disease results in tiny holes in the brain tissue. In humans, these holes can cause severe neurological problems and even death.
Jessica Watson is a PHD holder from the University of Washington. She studied behavior and interaction between squirrels and has presented her research in several wildlife conferences including TWS Annual Conference in Winnipeg.