That is a nice story, and glad you missed the panther. Never seen one of those in the wild, 'course, I have been in Louisiana now for 8 years and never seen a real black bear. I know they are around as I've heard the stories from the locals, but never laid eyes on one. If you want to see wildlife, try getting a glimpse of a Nutra (swamp rat), those things are huge, and, yes, some here do eat them, uggggh, but, like you, I can't stand killing an animal (those unfortunate stories we'll save for another thread, lol), unnecessarily, which is why I believe dogs belong INSIDE the truck, not in the bed, at least not without being tied down! And yeah, some of the gators around here would definitely have me sleeping in my truck if I were to be stranded, lol!