Feeding Nature
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foxes

What Do Foxes Eat?

Foxes sure are cute with their big ears and furry coats.  These animals belong to the Canidae family and there are twelve species of fox.  These 12 species of fox do have quite a few subspecies.  The red fox, for example, has 47 different subspecies.

There used to be many more species of fox but 25 species have already gone extinct.  Most of these fox extinctions are due to hunting using large packs of hounds.

With so many species already extinct, people need to do everything in their power to keep another species from becoming extinct.

One of the most crucial elements to ensuring their survival is to ensure that they have the needed food.  Foxes need to eat the right foods to stay healthy and full of energy.

What Do Foxes Eat?

Foxes have quite a diverse diet because they are omnivores.  They catch and eat all sorts of animals but are also happy to consume various types of food.  It is important for them to consume a variety of food types so they will get all the needed nutrients and vitamins.  Here is a quick look at some of the most common foods these animals enjoy eating.

Small Animals

Foxes love to hunt and catch small animals.  They enjoy the thrill of the chance and are quite fond of eating various small animal types such as birds, eggs, mice, rabbits, frogs, hedgehogs, and many others they find in their natural habitat.  Typically, foxes focus on animals that are smaller than they are and they prefer animals that are not too dangerous.

Carrion

If these animals cannot find animals to hunt, they will also scavenge for food.  They enjoy eating carrion meat.  Foxes will feed on any type of carcass they find including the carcass of larger mammals such as deer, calves, or lambs.

Insects

Insects are a very good source of protein for various animals.  Foxes love to catch and eat all sorts of insects if other foods are scarce.  They will eat a variety of insect types such as earthworms, grasshoppers, and crickets, beetle larvae, cutworms, moth larvae, crane flies, and many others.

Fruits and Vegetables

Foxes love to eat all sorts of fruits and many vegetables.  In autumn seasons, up to 100% of their diet consists of fruits.  They mostly feed on wild fruits they find in their natural environment such as berries.  They will also eat all sorts of commercial fruits such as blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, persimmons, mulberries, apples, grapes, plums, dates, and figs.

Grains and Nuts

Foxes eat a variety of vegetation.  They also eat grains and nuts.  You can offer foxes in your garden corn, oats, rice, wheat, barley, and rye.  Typically, they prefer to feed on softer grains such as cooked grain foods.

You can also offer foxes various nuts.  These foods are good oil supplements to keep their coats nice and shiny.  Foxes eat various nut varieties such as chestnuts, peanuts, acorns, almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, and others.  It is however important to remove hard shells from certain nuts because foxes cannot crush some of the harder types of the shell with their teeth.

Vegetation

Foxes will also eat all sorts of leafy greens.  They enjoy eating soft grass and will feed on soft leaves of various brushes or trees.  They do not consume as much vegetation as fruits, veggies, or animal matter but this is still a good source of nutrients in their diet.

Water

Foxes also need lots of freshwaters so they can stay hydrated.  Water is especially important during hot summers.  A drink area in your back yard is one of the best investments to help support local animal life and especially foxes.

Pet Food

Foxes can eat many of the same foods as dogs or cats.  They can therefore also be fed on pet foods such as canned meats, cooked lean meats, and even certain types of kibble.  They usually prefer protein pet foods such as canned dog food or canned cat food.

Diet Variations

Foxes can get very tame very fast.  When they become tame, they usually gain access to human foods that can also be very tasty for them.  Some foods like chocolate or bread should however be avoided or offered in moderation or these foods can make them ill.

How to Feed Foxes

Foxes need to feed on a variety of food types to help keep them healthy.  To feed foxes in your back yard, you can offer them fresh water and offer food in a dedicated feeding area.  They usually feed at night and can become regular visitors to your garden if you offer them healthy foods daily.

What Do Foxes Eat-In Captivity?

Domesticated foxes are usually fed on raw meat, tinned pet food, savory items such as cheese and table scraps, bread that is soaked in fat, fruits, and cooked vegetables.  These are the best foods to offer foxes that visit your back yard.

What do Baby Foxes eat?

A baby fox is called a kit.  These animals are mammals and need to drink milk for 4 – 6 weeks after birth.  If a fox is orphaned, it can be fed on milk formula and they need to feed every three hours.

Baby foxes will start to eat solid foods from 4 weeks on.  At this point, they will start to feed on foods such as carrion meat, fruits, and cooked vegetables.

How Much Do Foxes Eat?

An adult fox typically eats 0.5 – 1kg of food per day.  This can however vary based on their species since some species are much bigger than others.

How Often Do Foxes Eat?

Foxes are at their healthiest when they feed every day.  Pet foxes are also kept on a strict feeding schedule.  For example, fox owners might choose to offer a large meal twice a day and leave the pet fox to hunt for foods such as insects the rest of the time.

Do Foxes Eat Cats?

Foxes will feed on carrion meat.  If they happen to find a dead cat, they will feed on it.  They might also hunt and kill kittens if they become very hungry.  Cats usually are not part of their natural diet, though.

Do Foxes Eat Snakes?

Foxes prefer easy prey such as mice and rats but they will also catch and eat snakes.  They are quick enough to outsmart snakes and will also feed on snake carcasses if they find these in the wild.

Do Foxes Eat Owls?

These prowling animals love to catch all sorts of birds.  They also enjoy visiting the nests of birds and will feed on small chicks and eggs.  They will also eat young owlets or will feed owl carrion.  They do however avoid adult owls because foxes are rather small and can easily become prey to these larger birds.

Are Foxes Dangerous?

These animals are not dangerous to humans.  Many are also fully domesticated.  They can however become rabid if they are cornered, captured, and frightened.  Foxes can also be dangerous should they become infected with a disease such as rabies.

Do Foxes Make Good Pets?

Foxes are not domesticated and are considered wild animals.  Unlike household pets, they still have lots of instincts that make them unsuitable for family life.  Some people do keep foxes as pets but domesticating these animals is illegal in most countries.  You should do proper research on the local animal life laws if you are considering a fox as a pet.