Pumpkin the Raccoon!

YOU GUYS! I honestly couldn’t believe the unbelievable response to the Lowe’s Spring Makeover thingy majiggy that I posted about last week. I was expecting”¦I don’t know, maybe 10 or 12 applicants? Well, I got a WHOLE LOT more than that and I’m super duper flattered and touched by the whole thing. Who knew! This selection process is going to be long and grueling, mostly because I so badly want to do pretty much all of them!

OK, enough exclamation points.




This is Pumpkin the raccoon. I found her on Instagram. I’m obsessed with her.


I don’t know a ton about Pumpkin. Pumpkin was rescued as a lil’ baby raccoon and taken in by these folks who treat her more or less like a cat or a dog. She’s a chubby little lazy thing who doesn’t seem to mind her dope lifestyle one bit. I wish I could make myself tiny enough to use her plump belly as a bed.


Raccoon hands!!!!! They kill me. I can’t. I just can’t.


I think my favorite aspect of Pumpkin’s life is her relationship with her dogs, Oreo and Toffee. I’m guessing Pumpkin thinks she is a dog, but she’s clearly not a dog.


You know what’s cuter than two dogs cuddling with each other? A dog cuddling with a RACCOON! Interspecies friendships are perhaps the highest-ranking cute activity, and Pumpkin has it down. I love Toffee and Oreo for allowing this! I’m going to go ahead and guess Mekko would not be quite so accommodating. I guess no rescued pet raccoon for me, but we all have our crosses to bear. I guess I’ll just have to live vicariously through this magical instagram.

I just had to tell you. Every time I think I’ve found all the cute animals on instagram, I find new ones. I hesitate to ask, because, like, how many is too many to follow? but if you’re kinda the same way, who are your favorites?

About Daniel Kanter

Hi, I'm Daniel, and I love houses! I'm a serial renovator, DIY-er, and dog-cuddler based in Kingston, New York. Follow along as I bring my 1865 Greek Revival back to life and tackle my 30s to varying degrees of success. Welcome!

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Archives: 2010-2022

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  1. 2.14.16
    Adrienne said:

    Love love Pumpkin too! Especially that close-up with the nose?! She is one great raccoon! Do you know Esther, the wonder pig? I follow her on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/estherthewonderpig/?fref=ts
    Esther is awesome. The story goes that when the couple adopted her she was just a tiny little thing and they were told that she would stay fairly small, a mini pig or something. Anyway look at her now. But they love her so much despite her present size and she is not only part of the family but has become quite the celebrity as well.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Ohhh, Esther!! I guess that kind of micro-pig-turned-actual-pig happens fairly often—I’m glad the owners took it in stride! She’s so cuteeee!

  2. 2.14.16
    Sarah said:

    Ummmmmm Instagram.com/harrisonfordbulldog.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      he’s so round!! Love it. Folds on folds on folds!

  3. 2.14.16
    Amiee said:

    Pumpkin looks so cute and sweet but I think it’s an elaborate act devised to disguise her genius plans for world domination. Of course, I’m a sucker for the sweetness so consider me a mindless minion.

    My favorite is Juniper The Happiest Fox. Her smile melts me.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Ohhhhh! I don’t follow any foxes! Well, I didn’t…now I do!

  4. 2.14.16
    Nicolette said:

    Pumpkin is probably one of the cutest animals of all time, my boyfriend just loves it when I tag him in all the pictures! Ameliahedgehog is pretty great and loki_the_wolfdog makes you want to quit your job and become a mountain man.
    Ps// please pick me for the makeover :D

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      omg, amelia. I think I just had a stroke.

  5. 2.14.16
    Julia said:

    Pumpkin is so cute!

    I am a big fan of this little pet squirrel: https://instagram.com/p/BBLahLvkJQ9/

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Who is this person who gets to hang out with lions and tigers and squirrels and more??!? FOLLOWED.

  6. 2.14.16
    Lori said:

    Dude. DUDE. You are speaking my language! I was introduced to Pumpkin last spring as a joke, when I was in the midst of a long, epic, mud-filled, guerilla-style battle with a ninja biker gang posse of backyard raccoons, who were a little tooooo interested in home and garden renovation. I wish I could embed pictures in your comments, because there was one raccoon in particular who was so freakin’ cute that when I found her in the trap one morning, the first words out of my mouth were, “well, aren’t YOU cute!” My raccoons were contagious, so my next door neighbors ended up having to cut a hole in their kitchen wall and pull some raccoon babies out, which they almost adopted. They probably would have, if they hadn’t just adopted a very fast-growing & rambuctious puppy. I have pictures. It was adorable.

    Anyway, I look at those Pumpkin pics and think of what might have been…and wonder how the hell they manage to have WHITE FURNITURE with both raccoons & dogs in the house! (That probably does explain why the highlights are turned way up on all their IG pics, though.)

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:


      (I’m guessing you’re right about the highlights being bumped up, but I guess if Pumpkin stays inside, maybe she’s not so bad? Do raccoons shed a lot? I know nothing.)

  7. 2.15.16
    Naomi said:

    Oh Pumpkin! I also love @penguinthemagpie (they also published a book!) and @this_girl_is_a_squirrel (because squirrel hands!!!)

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      I follow this girl is a squirrel! I love her!! Penguin is amazing—gorgeous pictures!

  8. 2.15.16
    Janina said:

    YES YES YES!!!!!! Pumpkin is like THE most awesome raccoon there is (not that there are many raccoons that I know but still…) !!!! (Your exclamation marks spill over to the comments as well :))
    I follow (too?) many pet accounts, mostly pitbulls actually – my faves are probably roofusandkilo and the_blueboys. I’m really trying to follow more interior Instagram accounts but then I just find more cute pet accounts usually…

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      I love RufusandKilo! All of the puppy photos are so dangerous for me. I don’t know how I don’t have 12!

  9. 2.15.16
    Ryan said:

    Animal instagram accounts that aren’t design related? @sophiegamand, shelter dog pics many of them pitties with flower crowns
    Of course @wolfgang2242
    And @thiswildidea

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      I love Sophie’s work, and of course been a fan of Maddie forever! Thank you for the wolfgang2242 suggestion—senior dogs make me so happy :)

  10. 2.15.16
    Monica said:

    Of course everyone wants you to come do your renovation magic in their house. Imagine how many more you would have gotten if it weren’t for that little (stupid) stipulation that it had to be in the US. I totally understand though, although not really. I guess it is my fault for moving to Germany.
    Anyway….. OMG OMG OMG Pumpkin!!!! So adorably cute. Thanks for the tip! I follow @tunameltsmyheart, @walterthechi, and @andrewknapp

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      TUNA! I love Tuna so much. Most people don’t seem to get it, haha. Walter and Andew’s pup are pretty great!!

  11. 2.15.16
    Lisa said:

    Too cute, she is just adorable. Completely made up for it being Monday morning. Glad to see you posting again.

  12. 2.15.16
    Junedotbe said:

    Sharing pics of cute animals – isn’t that the reason the internet was invented ?

    Thanks for sharing Pumpkin ! Of course I’m now following her.

  13. 2.15.16
    Thel said:

    Daniel, I just had to respond quickly to these photos . . . they are wonderful! Aren’t animals just the best examples for humans? We could learn so much from them, if we only wanted to.

    I don’t follow instagram, but I just saw a little report on tv here, in Europe, and the friendship was between a piglet and a kitten. The kitten was just biting the piglet’s ears, attacking its snout, and so on. The piglet on the other hand was just taking it all in his stride – he understood the kitten was just playing. I hope that friendship is going to last the test of time, and that they grow old together.

  14. 2.15.16
    Simone said:

    The maker in me is plotting “How do I make a raccoon-shaped cuddle?” I’m sure I will figure it out. Since I live in Europe so no raccoons here. He is insanely cute, you are right about that!!!

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      If you figure it out, put in an order for me for two! :)

  15. 2.15.16
    Sonia said:


    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      SAY NO MORE. Followed, duh. GOATS!

  16. 2.15.16
    Eilidh said:

    *Goes immediately to instragram to add Pumpkin*…
    Wish I could magic my Edinburgh (Scotland) tenement flat to the US for one of your room makeovers!

    • 2.20.16
      Luna said:

      OOh Daniel would die and go to heaven if he saw an Edinburgh tenement (assuming they’re the same as Glasgow ones that is :))

    • 2.21.16
      Eilidh said:

      Yes they are identical! Love them, wonky floors and all!

  17. 2.15.16
    gretaclark said:

    I love Maru the cat in Japan. He is on Cute Overload, a site which might be shut down now.

    • 2.15.16
      Adrien said:

      I even have the Maru book!

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      I’ve been such a Maru fan for years! I love the youtube videos of him diving into empty boxes. He’s such a goof!

      (I had no idea about cute overload shutting down!! sniffle…)

  18. 2.15.16
    Erin said:

    Also know that for every entry you received, there were at least two or three people who desperately want you to come work on their houses, but just couldn’t get an entry together in time! For real, every single time you post, I think to myself, what are the chances that I will run into Daniel at a thrift store or something someday, and we will suddenly become friends and he will come help me with my wreck of a house?? (Chances are very slim. Slimmer than that raccoon is fat. But a girl can dream!)

    • 2.15.16
      Tisha said:

      Yes, this! I think I came up with at least 5 projects that fit the category, between my house and my boyfriend’s house. But I didn’t manage to get an entry together in time, either. I even fantasized that Daniel would be able to stay a bit longer and consult on the projects that don’t fit the criteria, but alas.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Next time, y’all! Hopefully Lowe’s will do this again and want me involved—I think it’s going to be a lot of fun!!

    • 2.20.16
      Luna said:

      :) Someone should set up a ‘fansofDan’ hashtag… I’d follow!!

  19. 2.15.16
    Elin said:


    I stalk everything cute related on the internet,(as well as a few fav blogger like yourself) I posted my top 5 only since it would be a very long post indeed if I didn’t limit myself. Cuteoverload shutting down was a saaad sad day.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      All good recs!! Thank you!!

  20. 2.15.16
    MB said:

    You may want to check out hotdudeswithkittens on IG. It’s pretty great. Just sayin.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Oh yes. Yes please.

  21. 2.15.16
    Charley said:

    Have you checked out roofusandkilo on Instagram? Pitbull and foster puppies (and an old Lab and a tiny Pomeranian ).

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Yes! SO CUTE. I can’t deal with the puppies!!

  22. 2.15.16
    Marlena said:

    I love Pumpkin! My other favorite it Kyle: https://www.instagram.com/mycatkyle/?hl=en
    His description: Kyle is a rescue with 3 teeth, no claws, severe dandruff, hip dysplasia, and a crooked ear. Also, he witnessed a murder.
    He survived a domestic abuse situation and now is in a loving home. Everyone, go love on Kyle!
    p.s. then pick me for the Lowe’s home improvement gig!

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Ohhhh, Kyle!! Have you ever seen PrincessMonsterTruck? If you like Kyle I think you’d enjoy PMT. :)

  23. 2.15.16
    Caitlin said:

    @harlowandsage on Instagram. A weimaraner and two mini dachsunds who appear to do nothing but cuddle with each other.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      OMG STAHHHHP. That’s really special.

  24. 2.15.16
    Shannon said:

    Interspecies love and couch potato raccoons ftw

  25. 2.15.16
    nadine said:

    I can’t either. Just can’t.

  26. 2.15.16
    Caroline said:

    Pumpkin is sooo cute. You’re right, it’s the little hands.

    My favourite animal on the internet is a cat called The Bear aka My Sad Cat.

    He belongs to Tom Cox, who has written 4 really, really funny books about his many cats. I love his books because they’re not cheesy sentimental stuff – he’s a pretty cool British rock journo/author who just happens to be an avid cat man. All you animal-loving Manhattan Nesters should check him out!

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      <3 kittys! <3

  27. 2.15.16
    Staci said:

    Wait have you seen the dogs at Sacco Sorry? https://www.instagram.com/sacco_sorry/ Consider your mornings forever changed. They live in Japan, so the owner posts while I’m asleep, and every morning when I wake up Taj and Emir put me in a good mood.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      omg! hahahaha their hair! LOVE

  28. 2.15.16
    Paula said:

    Because pumpkin and porcupine.

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      I LOVE THAT VIDEO! Thank you for bringing it back into my life!! BOOKMARKED.

    • 2.18.16
      Paula said:

      I know!! How can you not? It’s TALKING PORCUPINE.

  29. 2.15.16
    Anna said:

    @toastmeetsworld flopsy wonderful dog
    @marytoddlincolncoffman dachshund who hangs out at Ann Pachett’s bookstore in Nashville
    @corgnelius the famous corgi
    @wolfgang2242 this guy has about 8 rescue dogs and a pig named Bikini
    @harlowandsage three pups who love each other
    @getfeathers chickens!

    and @rollo_rory_heidi are my babies

    • 2.15.16
      Daniel said:

      Ohhhh, your dachshunds! SO cute!!

    • 2.18.16
      Anna said:

      Thanks! :) They’re little jerks but I love them so much.

  30. 2.15.16
    Cindi M said:

    Here I am raining on the parade. http://mypetraccoons.com/raccoonwebsite_006.html
    Like Virginia, New York and many states do not allow us to keep raccoons or other wild animals (no Bambi, either). I like Wolfgang and Susie’s Seniors.

  31. 2.15.16
    Annie said:

    I cannot resist cute animals! All of them, every kind. The hamster eating the burrito and cake on youtube…could not handle it. I’m a Pumpkin follower now, too. Thank you for that, a serious thank you. Some of my favorites on Instagram involve corgis (threecorgis, ninawanco and Shalfey) and Old English sheepdogs. I have one of each (I want more but partners, ya know), so I’m partial. Prissy_pig, Ginny the Jack Russell, Darcy the Hedgehog, Samhaseyebrows cat, SirCharlesBarkley the Frenchie, mensweardog, tomiinya the cross eyed cat, Kevin Bacon the pig, dogcommune (dogs and babies), ayasakai (boy + Frenchie) and so on. Now I have to go consider the amount of time I spend looking at cute animals. I might have a little problem. Good luck with the selection process!

  32. 2.15.16
    sarah said:

    check out mr_chatnoir on IG
    he is a bad ass Cornish Rex kitty from UK
    his Dad posts stuff and the comments are priceless :)

    glad we are all admitting to shameless IG addictions
    oh also sometimescarl – he is an adoreable pibbull with a Dacshund ‘brother’ :)

  33. 2.15.16
    Shanna said:

    Hands down, @pepito_mora_the_bunny . Like Pumpkin, he loves his canine siblings. Also, a house trained rabbit; what the heck?!

  34. 2.15.16
    Sage said:

    When we predicted that raccoons would be the new “it” animal *in jest* in a recent blog post (http://www.plasteranddisaster.com/blog-anniversary/), we did not know about Pumpkin. Now I realize how foolish we were, of course raccoons are next.

  35. 2.16.16
    Adrien said:

    Nobody mentioned Jill the squirrel, so I am pleased to introduce you:

  36. 2.16.16
    Erin said:

    Oh the pitfalls of being a wildlife biologist. All I can think about is how raccoon poop is infested with roundworms. That thing’s butt is on my white couch? Oh hell no. :)

  37. 2.16.16
    Lori said:

    Cuteoverload’s ending was a terrible loss but their most out-there writer NTMTOM has taken up the baton:


    I like Maru’s blog, updated just about every day, the odd but very polite caption translations just kill me:


    And the weirdly surreal and enigmatic Guremike (only because I don’t read Japanese and the Bing or Google translations are like Dada poetry), brother and sister cats now with new human baby:


  38. 2.16.16
    Ginger said:

    I was going to recommend @wolfgang2242 – my favourite animal instagram account ever – but someone beat me to it!

    This isn’t an insta account, but it is one of my favourite animal stories online:

    • 2.18.16
      Paula said:

      OMG. this story! Breaks my heart.

    • 2.20.16
      Luna said:

      THIS made me cry….

  39. 2.19.16

    Wendy has a place in her heart for every pug that has ever existed in the world, so her absolute go to is the very popular Doug The Pug. But the one that I love and always wish they’d post more is @TinyGoatsInSweaters (https://www.instagram.com/tinygoatsinsweaters/). There’s just something about tiny baby goats that always gets me. I completely love them for so many reasons, not the least of which is due to the fact that they are complete and total dicks in an adorable way. The YouTube video of Buttermilk using her sibling as a launching pad for flips is beyond hysterical. I also tend to stalk the #OriPei hashtag to find other dogs that look just like Lulu because I just enjoy their wrinkles.

  40. 2.19.16
    Barb said:

    I am truly worried about you, Daniel.

    • 2.19.16
      Mom said:

      No need to worry Barb. Daniel was, at one time in his life, very interested in becoming a vet. He went to multiple vet camps–omg, the stories he could tell. And, he was constantly trying to save every small creature of nature. I once witnessed him doing CPR on a tiny bunny that one of large dogs had tried to capture. We had the local Wildlife Rescue League practically on speed dial (now, I’m dating myself). He loves animals of all kinds and its part of how he fills that great big heart of his. No worries.

    • 2.20.16
      Luna said:

      Hi Mom!!!!!

    • 2.19.16
      Daniel said:

      Like Mom said, nothing to worry about! She’d be the first to know if there was. :)

  41. 2.19.16
    Foy said:

    I love http://www.instagram.com/anniepaddington/. It has it all, velvety Shar Pei Paddington, inter-species romance, lovely home decor that matches the animals, and goofy costumes.

  42. 2.20.16
    Karen said:

    Following every cute animal social media suggested EXCEPT RACCOONS. Shudder and horror. They are cute until you meet a gang of them in the woods on a dark night with their little masks, and leather jackets threateningly opening and closing their butterfly knives in their creepy little hands.

  43. 2.23.16
    aab said:

    @baloointhewild – adorable dog in pretty locations