With TB, culls and being awful at crossing roads to contend with, there’s never been a worse time to be a badger.
But a media raccoon thinks he can help Britain’s embattled brocks, by giving them a cheeky public relations makeover.
Cliff Maxord, a shuffling scavenger with a nose for publicity, thinks badgers need to work on their image. And with their stripy little faces and bumbling gait, they’re already half-way to being mistaken for raccoons.
“No-one feels sorry for a badger if they think they’re a love rat”, said Maxord. “And being nocturnal can lead to certain ‘misunderstandings’. But with my help, they can keep potential bad news away from the papers, or even just make something up.”
Maxord is encouraging the most photogenic young badgers to ‘knock over a bin for charity’, or rescue a kitten within the eyeline of a hack.
“It doesn’t take much to knock a stray into the canal, and then be photographed dragging it back out”, Maxord revealed. “Although when you’re giving the kiss of life, it’s best not to do tongues.”
Maxord explained how the public can easily be won over, with just a winning smile and a wave from a cute little paw.
“Badgers need to work on their vulnerability and drop the whole ‘belligerent omnivore’ routine”, he insisted. “Who wouldn’t feel sorry for a coquettish teen badger, when she’s got her face stuck in a rusty old bucket?”
Maxord has since parted company with his badger clientele, but strenuously denies taking advantage of any young mammals while their heads were trapped in decaying galvanised devices.
“Me? No, I never even set eyes on that underage hedgehog”, insisted Maxord. “I’m not a sex raccoon, I’m a wronged little rabbit.”
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