The Rat Hunters of New York
The city that never sleeps is home to untold millions of four-legged vermin. Richard Reynolds and his band of bloodthirsty terriers are determined to sniff them out one-by-one.
On a chilly Friday night in early spring, four men and three women meet in a dimly-lit alley next to Manhattan’s City Hall Park. They are dressed against the unseasonable thirty-degree chill, in puffy jackets and protective working gloves with worn-down fingertips. With them are four small dogs on nylon leashes.
Richard Reynolds, a bald, husky business analyst from New Jersey, stands at their center, a head taller than anybody else, in an outfit made up of varying shades of khaki. In one hand he grips the wooden head of a long black cane, in the other a thin nylon leash, at the end of which is a ruddy brown dog named Dudley, a squat, short-legged Norfolk terrier with baleful brown eyes.
Reynolds surveys the scene—the dogs and their owners huddled in small groups along with Reynolds’s cameraman, Jeff Formosa, who would upload the night’s footage onto YouTube. Reynolds tapped his cane on the ground.
“Alright then,” he says. “I guess this is it. Let’s go.”