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A Fox on the Farm -- Getting Too Close

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  • Original Poster

    Good stories, everyone. Except for the cat-eating foxes. Boo. Well, I do lock my cats in the garage every night. And I only leave it open a crack (they can crawl under) during the day, and often the cats stay in for long periods of time. My older cat does not venture far at all. My younger one (13) will venture out and hunt some. But she is the one who was spooked by something and has hung out closer to home lately. Though yesterday she did venture out to the barn when we were out there.
    “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
    ¯ Oscar Wilde


    • #22
      We had a grey fox family around my former barn for years and never lost any cats to them. But our cats were quite big. We did have one that was older and small, but she stayed indoors at night and survived.


      • #23
        I had a fox family last year about 20 feet from my barn and a couple years ago about 100 feet from the back of the house. I love my foxes (they eat the prairie dogs and all my cats are indoors) and am very sad that wherever their den is right now it isn't in easy view. I read somewhere that foxes change dens every couple of weeks for flea control, so they may move on in not too long.
        Pam's Pony Place

        Pam's Pony Ponderings


        • #24
          I used to worry about foxes, but no longer do.

          Foxes moved to our property, when we moved in. We have been dealing with them for five years now.

          When they first moved in, one of them was very mangy. I treated both with Ivermectin, the guy healed, and the whole family decided it was the place to set up the base camp forever.

          I got into a contact with a lady in NY, who has a fox rescue and she provided me a lot of help through years.

          Here is her link, if you are interested (you can call her- she is a wonderful support): http://foxwoodrehab.typepad.com/my_w.../10/index.html

          What I learned through years:
          Foxes move their den frequently (every ten days or so and more frequently, if they sense danger). So, you can just wait your fox out, until she moves farther away.

          You can "help" her by spraying a coyote scent around your barn and house. That should encourage her to find another place. You can also make her life there uncomfortable by starting a "project." Whatever you do, do not displace her, please. You would most likely have a bunch of orphans left behind.

          Foxes are not out there to kill pets (at least here in the country). We own an eight pound ancient dog and, all that ever happened, was a mama coming to him "telling" him to leave the area of her den (no attack, no physical contact, just posturing and fox barking).

          I do watch him closely these days, however, because I do not want a conflict and I know, it is going to be over in two months (foxes will become elusive again).

          April to June are the months, when you see foxes all the time. They are very busy providing for their youngs (to care for people seeing them during day) and they are also the most protective of the babies.

          Before April, babies are too small to go anywhere and foxes "lay low," so that nobody knows, where they are.

          Then, babies grow enough to start leaving den for brief periods of time and this is the moment, when foxes get very nervous. The babies are too small to provide for themselves and too big to be fully controlled by mama (and daddy, if he is around). That's the time, you see the most "aggression."

          I think, you are doing everything right. As long as your animals have a safe space to go to, you should not have much trouble.

          As I said, everything should calm down in a month or two.

          PS: Foxes take care of a lot of our mice and help to reduce our ground hog population by hunting the young ones. They can be very useful on a farm.


          • #25
            emilia, I love you. (hug) Thank you -- every wonderful service to our wildlife is priceless.
            Life doesn't have perfect footing.

            Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
            We Are Flying Solo


            • #26
              I'm also loving you emelia
              Have also loved "my" foxes for years.


              • Original Poster

                Thanks, all. I definitely will not relocate any foxes. And I do love to see them. I am wondering if they already moved the den because I haven't seen them in a few days. I did see two that one day. Momma was busy, as I saw her four times in one day.
                “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
                ¯ Oscar Wilde


                • #28
                  If I was you, I'd be bringing the cats inside. Foxes can and will kill cats, and a hungry momma will be looking for easy pickings.

                  I have cats and there are foxes living on my land. My cats stay inside where they're safe. It also means that they're not out killing the local small birds/wildlife.
                  Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!


                  • #29
                    I have seen foxes and feral cats eat together peacefully. I think it very much depends on the circumstances (is there enough food, does one animal have young, cat/fox size ratio, intelligence/experience level of the cats, etc.)

                    The foxes at our barn have gotten bolder and bolder every year. The more "people friendly" they get the more worried I get for them that they're going to approach a person and/or tussle with a cat/dog and end up shot for it.

                    No solutions for you, I just do love a fox and it makes me sad when we can't co-exist. I get it. Sometimes we can't. Just makes me sad.
                    "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"