Some people affectionately call raccoons “trash pandas” — and for good reason.
With their prominent black masks and bushy ringed tails, raccoons are not unlike giant red pandas. But, without their hair, would they still look like trash pandas? Well, have a look at the hairless raccoon below and decide for yourself.
The hairless raccoon looks less like a raccoon or panda and more like a dog/pig/bear hybrid.
The image originally surfaced on Reddit in 2013, with user Oafah writing, “A friend of a friend took pictures periodically every time she’d spot this little creature from her Toronto apartment complex. It went from being a furry ginger to being smooth as a baby’s ass, largely over the winter.”
The cause of the condition is unclear, though some speculated that it could be a form of alopecia or mange, which causes hair loss in animals.
Hairless raccoons are often the inspiration behind tales of the legendary creature known as the chupacabra.
With sightings first reported in Puerto Rico in 1995, el chupacabra literally means “the goatsucker”. This is due to reports of puncture wounds on dead sheep, which have been completely sucked dry of blood. Since then, alleged sightings of chupacabras throughout the Americas have spread, and some people have even claimed to have captured them.
Yet, despite assertions that el chupacabra is real, all dead and captured specimens have been revealed as hairless raccoons or dogs.
For example, take a look at this alleged “chupacabra” caught in Texas. The features are not unlike a hairless raccoon, and it’s very unlikely that it’s been feasting upon the blood of goats.