Off the Track

Maybe you can help me. Last Sunday morning, I looked out our side door and saw these tracks. Weird. At least to me. How could this happen? How can there be only one set of paw prints? Is it a one-legged dog that is hopping along? Taking a short cut through our side yard? Hey, no judgement here! If I was a one-legged dog that had to hop, I’d take short cuts through people’s yards, too!

Not quite sure about my one-legged dog theory, I put this picture on our neighborhood Facebook page. One theory offered was that it was a cat, and I was told that a cat steps in the same place. Really? All four paws go in the one, exact same spot? This cat’s stride seems pretty long to me. Another theory offered was that we were visited by sand people – who always ride single file to hide their numbers. Some people are kind of silly.

So, I look out the side door the next morning. Here’s what I see:

Next to original set of tracks, which had melted and expanded a bit, was a new set of tracks in a single line. The prints match the day before, and so it looks to me like our friend was back. Now I’m really curious. I take our cat outside to the patio and try to get her to walk. Sorry, but I am unable to take a picture while I am doing scientific research with our cat. Of course, she turns right around, comes back to me, and there’s all kind of prints, and none of them are in a straight line. As I am detail-oriented, I do follow the scientific method; the results are replicated three times. I take our cat back inside, but as I do I notice something. Our cat’s paw print is about one-third of the size of our nightly visitor’s paw print, and I’m talkin’ the original size.

The next morning, I look out the side door, but no sand people or one-legged dogs have visited us. And to be honest, I’m kind of disappointed. It was just a plain ole’ ordinary day.

But! The next morning, I look out, and what do I see?

I see a new, single line of paw prints! This print is different, and it is huge! This ain’t no one-legged dog takin’ a short cut or some sand people try to stay undercover. I don’t know ’bout you, but I’m thinkin’ . . . it’s a one-legged horse!

Did I ever tell you I grew up in the city?


  1. Your post was up and then it disappeared. I’m glad it’s back. You made me stop and laugh at the sand people reference! It’s not easy to make me stop and laugh. The tracks look “deer like” to me. But where are the other hoofs (or whatever the plural of hoof is)?
    I am 🤔 perplexed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is a good suggestion. I will look in Google images after all our imaginations have run their courses and given us some laughs. The single line of prints befuddles me though. Thanks for reading, and enjoy your day!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Maybe it is an elf? Of a deer on a pogo stick? You sure you don’t have a neighbor with a sense of humor? Time to set up a camera with a motion trigger. Keep us posted.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Well, I do know there have been coyote sightings in our neighborhood! The paw print was very large, much larger than our cat’s paw print. The last tracks could be from a bunny, but I still don’t get why there is only a single line of tracks. I know we have bunnies, too! Thanks for your comment, and Happy Valentine’s Day!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Google “small animal tracks” and select images. A while back I had some mysterious tracks in my back yard and I turned to my social media friends and the internet for identification, Due to the tracks being in mud and distorted I never did determine for certain what animal belonged to the track, but it was fun! Let us know what you find!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I did a bit of research and couldn’t find anything. I may email the Missouri Department of Conversation. This mystery needs an expert, and that’s not me! Thanks for reading, and Happy Valentine’s Day!


  4. We have a lot of snow in our back yard and this morning there was an area where the snow had been all pushed aside. It looked like an animal may have tried to find a hole in the snow for warmth. Looking at the tracks all around I am trying to figure out what kind of animal it was.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What looks like a mystery. Funny but we had similar pattern in snow in our backyard though the snow was a lot more than yours and parallel to it I knew I saw cats paw marks. Our neighbouring cats roam quite freely.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.