paperclip fox



  • Red foxes are commonly seen in urban areas.
  • Encounters between animals and people increase during the breeding season (April-May) when dens are in close proximity to human-use areas.
  • Red foxes have a rusty coat and a white-tipped tail.
  • They are mostly active during the evening and early morning, but can often be seen during the day as they can modify their schedule depending on available food sources.
  • 3-8 (with an average of 4-5) young are born in April-May.
  • They usually eat small mammals, insects, fruits, acorns, birds, and eggs.
  • They can squeeze through holes no less than 4-inch x 4-inch. They are good climbers as well.
  • Foxes don't eat cats or dogs, and will actively avoid both.
  • It's rare for foxes to have rabies. You're much more likely to encounter a rabid raccoon, skunk, or bat than a fox.
  • Dogs can catch a disease called Mange from foxes, however it is easily treatable in dogs. The disease is fatal in foxes

Problem Diagnosis


Refer to SELF-HELP if:

  • The fox is confined and unable to leave on its own.
  • The animal is being fed by the homeowner or by the neighbours.
  • The homeowner fears for their pets. (Includes small dogs, cats, rabbits, chickens, and rodents).
  • The homeowner has fruiting trees, bird feeders, or anything else that would attract foxes into their yard.
  • The fox is repeating the behaviour.


  • The fox is confined and unable to leave without hands-on assistance.
  • The animal is sick or injured.
  • The animal has repeatedly killed domestic animals.
  • A bite has occurred.
  • Homeowner is unable or unwilling to exercise self-help options.


If the fox is confined but could leave on its own, open a gate or door to allow the animal to leave. Patch-up entryways in fences, gates, and foundations. If the fox continues to stay, try spraying it with a garden hose.

Removal of Attractants

  • Remove fallen fruit, berries, nuts, etc. from the area.
  • Keep all pet food inside.
  • Contain garbage in cans with tight fitting lids. Foxes will get into anything to which they have access.
  • To eliminate possible den sites: remove rocks and woodpiles, securely close off entry under or into sheds, outbuildings, porches, etc.
  • Regularly pick up eggs that chickens lay in the yard.

Habitat Modification & Exclusion

  • Fence the yard to deny access and repair holes in fences and gates.
  • Close gates or entryways onto property.
  • Keep the yard free of tall grasses and trim shrubbery up from the ground regularly to deny the fox cover.
  • Keep domestic birds, rabbits, etc. in secured, roofed enclosures, especially at night.


  • Scare off with loud noises or with a squirt from the hose.
  • If the animal is inside a building, turn on a loud radio as well as a bright light.
  • Ammonia-soaked rags placed in frequently visited areas of the yard work well.
  • Critter Ridder® may be suggested since it targets animals that use their noses for navigation. However, its effectiveness on foxes has not been proven.

Self-Help Trapping

This is not recommended. Never advise the homeowner to catch or handle a fox.

Professional Assistance

This is suggested when all other measures have been taken and it is determined that the fox may need to be removed from the property.

  • Humane Wildlife Control (514-395-4555)
  • In the case of a bite: If a domestic pet has been bitten, bring the pet immediately to the vet. In off-hours, emergency cases can be brought to DMV, a 24-hour veterinary service. However, this clinic, though extremely thorough and knowledgeable, is also quite expensive. If a human has been bitten, bring them directly to a hospital.