A video supposedly showing an ‘urban fox hunt’, in which a fox appeared to be clubbed to death in a London park, has turned out to be a hoax.
The video sparked outrage but filmmakers Chris Atkins and Johnny Howorth have said they made the film as a satirical reaction to the “ludicrous media coverage” of the dangers of urban foxes.
In reality, the dead animal in the film was a stuffed fox, while the live fox was a pet dog with a bushy tail taped to its hindquarters.
The ‘urban fox hunting’ film was widely reported in the media and met with anger from both the public and from animal rights groups.
However, Atkins and Howorth claim that they made the film as ridiculous as possible.
“We wanted to create something that would be so ridiculous that in any other area it would be immediately dismissed as a spoof, but that news outlets desperate to continue the media narrative against foxes would leap on without any thought as to its authenticity,” said Atkins.
“We are very sorry for troubling the RSPCA, the police and well-meaning animal lovers, but hope they understand that this was done to illustrate the idiotic nature of reporting on foxes, and remind the public how sick and cruel fox hunting really is,” he continued.
The media whipped up hysteria over urban fox attacks in June this year after a pair of baby twins were attacked in East London.
In fact, fox attacks on humans are extremely rare.