Pet foxes in the United Kingdom
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In the United Kingdom you do not require any licenses to own or breed foxes.
Foxes are exempt from requiring a Dangerous wild animals license though this does not mean that if provoked they will not defend themselves and thus, being exempt from the license does not mean they do not have the potential to be dangerous.
Weather a fox is expensive really depends on the species of fox. Here in the U.K. we have the following available:
'Vulpes Vulpes'- This is our native red fox as well as all colour morphs there of. Wildlife rehabilitation centres often have kits they have become too tame to release for sale to people that they feel are suitable at the end of spring. The price for these kits is variable.
You can also but a red fox (or morph there of) from a breeder or broker. Prices for these kits is between £175.00 - £500 approx per fox.
'Vulpes Lagopus' - Arctic foxes in polar or blue phases normally cost around £650-£700 per fox.
'Vulpes Corsac'- A corsac fox kit is normally around £800-£1000 approx. The younger the more expensive per fox.
'Vulpes Zerda'- Fennec foxes seldom come up for sale in the UK and due to this they are quite expensive at £2,500 approx per fox with adults and kits being equally as valuable.
'Otocyon megalotis'- Bat eared foxes are even more rare then fennec foxes however they normally cost about the same at £2,500 approx per fox.
There are also Nyctereutes procyonoides or raccoon dogs which are still canids though quite unfoxlike. They normally cost from £500- £800 per animal.
Other species of fox are not really seen in the U.K. pet trade.
The very best diet I have found can be found by following this link:
It comprises of turkey, chicken, baby clams, salmon, green beans and a few other things.
It does not take long to make and like I said it is the very best diet I have found. All of my foxes eat this and totally adore it.
As a snack for them throughout the day you can leave out some high quality kibble, royal canin is IDEAL as many of the breed specific formulas contain taurine which all foxes need. My corsacs have the miniature schnauzer and my fennecs and younger foxes have the chihuahua 30.
In addition to the above if your fox is a fennec you will want to give them at least 20 mealworms a day each.
Yes you can walk a fox much like a dog but there are things to remember.
Though you may have a lead and harness attached to the fox it does not mean they will go where you want them to. Foxes very much like to walk their humans, not the other way around. They may venture over fences, under bushed, up trees or under cars just to mention a few.
Foxes can slip collars and harnesses better then any dog I have ever met so it is advised to walk them with a harness and a collar with a lead. The collar's lead is more or less a back-up for if they get out of their harness.
Lots of dogs do not like foxes and may attack them. Many dog owners walk their dogs without a lead and may be able to get to your fox even before you notice them coming.
Lots of people are against people keeping 'wild' animals and may pick fights with you over this.
Many species do not like to be walked such as the fennec who associated the harness with a predator holding onto them and the corsac who are often deathly scared of birds or any size as they fear that they will swoop down and kill them.
In short no.
Many vets do not deal with exotics and that is the group a pet fox falls into even if they are Vulpes vulpes like those found in the wild.
You will require a vet however to treat your fox and also inoculate them against both distemper and parvo. The best thing to do it just call up local vets in your area but if you are unlucky like me you will have to drive 45mins to the nearest exotics vet.
If there is ever an emergency with your pet fox most emergency vets will treat your fox but also expect you to take them to your vets at the next available time. Thankfully most vets do know their way around a fox due to the number that are brought in by the public in need of medical attention.
Yes foxes can learn tricks and they do so very quickly.
I teach my foxes tricks to provide them with mental stimulation which is important as they are very, very intelligent animals. It also makes it easier to do a daily health check with them if they are accustomed to me doing these things and in turn they get rewards.
You cannot let a fox in the garden without a lead so unless you are happy to walk around with them every time they need the bathroom so no, they cannot be house trained like a dog however they can be taught to use a litter tray.
That very much depends on the child and the other animals.
My daughter is quiet and calm most of the time and during this time my foxes are happy to play fetch with her and sit with her and watch a movie HOWEVER when our daughter brings friends round most of the time the foxes will avoid them like the plague as they are too loud and make many quick movements which is quite worrying to them.
My dogs get along great with my foxes but they are very well behaved. None of them have a mean bone in their bodies but this does not mean that instinct cannot kick in and then they may see my little fennec foxes as prey or my dogs might play too rough with them. Due to this I never leave my foxes and my dogs unsupervised, I watch them at all times.
In a home environment foxes and cats may or may not get along, it really depends once again on the animals. My foxes and my cats avoid each other.
A general rule is to not allow a fox to play with an animal smaller then themselves.
Yes you can keep a pet fox inside though it is good to have an outside enclosure for when you are out of the house so they can burn some energy and also not break or eat any and everything they can reach.
The larger the species of fox the more important an outside enclosure becomes. My corsac foxes live inside as do my fennecs however my arctics and reds/silvers live outside.
Fennec foxes do not require an outside enclosure at all.
When thinking of keeping a fox inside take into account your living situation. If you live in a terrace, or semi-detached house remember that when your foxes are excited and screaming their heads off your neighbours will also hear that so it might be better if you keep them outside at night time.
If you live in a flat I would not advise you get any species of fox, not even a fennec due to the noise they make.
That depends on the species and also the diet you feed them with those fed a raw diet normally smelling less.
I have found corsac and fennec foxes to smell the least followed by arctic and then red.
The reason the arctic and red foxes smell is not because they themselves smell but more their excrement does. I rank the red as smelling more then the arctic as the red will often roll in their own faeces for not apparent reason. Arctic's sometimes do this but less often.
All foxes give off a musky smell from their violet gland when worried.
Foxes are not aggressive to humans unless provoked.
If a fox it treated badly or feels threatened they may bite but not without giving you plenty of waning to back away first.
There have been only a handful of incidents over the last decade of people being bitten by foxes compared to 1,500 serious attacks by dogs.
Before I got Harry and Elspeth I had a 20ftx20ft enclosure constructed. I chose this size as in the EU in the countries that require you to have a set sized enclosure this is the minimum size, also, many fur farms have found that to get foxes to breed 20ftx20ft is the minimum size enclosure.
This size enclosure gives the foxes plenty of room to run around an play aswell as room for it you have 2 in the enclosure for them to be able to get away from eachother.
I would recomend that you use chainlink (also known as cyclone fence, chain wire or wire netting, it is a woven material made from galvanised steel wire) as it is very strong and will weather well.
You will need to dig about a foot down when building your enclosure so that you can put either a concrete, chainlink or paving slab floor down as foxes like to dig and will escape otherwise. Remember to connect the base of your walls to the floor so there is not gap to get through. You can then cover the floor in either soil, sand, wood chips or straw.
When you have done both the base and walls you will need a roof for two reasons:
1) Many species of fox are good climbers.
2) You do not want to be blamed every time a cat goes missing in your area.
The roof can be constructed of either chainlink or corriagated plexi glass or metal. You will want to slant it so the water runs off and does not stagnate or make the roof so heavy that it caves in.