Alfred is not sleek, nor slender, nor graceful. He is a grubby specimen, a pigeon, but pigeons are like coalminers in that they are often grimy for reasons that are to do with their environment rather than to do with an aversion to washing.
He is a stoical pigeon, and a clumsy one. These traits were impressed upon his character by a single incident early in his life, in which he involved himself too intimately with a high voltage power cable. This brief encounter left him poorer, to the tune of two toes on his right foot and a wingtip. His flying, therefore, was erratic and his landings more so. But, he reasoned, he could still fly, and took great consolation in this gift from his Creator; many other creatures would have been completely incapacitated or indeed extinguished by such an adventure. So he feels lucky, privileged even, but this does not extend to pride. He is aware of his shortcomings.