The breathing noise was loud, oddly loud, rasping, gasping and coming from near my back door. I felt a prickle of fear. Was an intruder in my garden?

I scanned my small lawn, and identified that the sound was coming from a patch of long grass and wild flowers. As I got closer, the breathing seemed to fill the air around me. Then I saw, tucked behind an old plant pot, a hedgehog, huffing, puffing and gurgling, and clearly in distress.

I watched for a while, wondering if he would move on, but there he sat, soon attracting the attention of a cat, who tapped him with an enquiring paw.

A ...


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