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Discrimination and worse?

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Fox_Watcher
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Discrimination and worse?

Postby Fox_Watcher » Sat Apr 19, 2014 3:21 pm

Have any of you ever been discriminated against for owning a fox? Have any of your foxes ever been threatened with harm by people who don't like you having them, and have any of them actually been harmed? I've seen some stories, but I'd like to see if you have any experience with this. Do you think you should have security measures in place when owning a fox? How do you protect your fox-both physically and against accusations(we all saw what happened to poor Vader) icon-sad? If I'm going to one day make the thousands of dollars investment to get and make my fox friend comfortable, and then the emotional and time investment to take care of him or her properly, I want to be damn sure that some random jerk doesn't harm them-and if they do, catch them and make them suffer.
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pat
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby pat » Sat Apr 19, 2014 4:28 pm

what you are talking about actually applies to all exotic animals. there are so many people that think we should not have a fox. they are brain washed by peta/AR.

For this reason, I strongly urge exotic owners not to take them out in public, and don't even tell people you don't know, or even neighbors that you own a fox or whatever. Many people have had problems from taking their fox for a walk.
it only takes one person.

also, I don't recommend owning a fox in city living. the less people see the fox or whatever, the better.
keeping a pen away from easy view would be best.

it's a shame we have to do this, but, we need to protect our animals.
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the_randomizer
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby the_randomizer » Sat Apr 19, 2014 11:07 pm

It all pretty much boils down to people fearing and giving in to myths and misconceptions about that which they don't understand.
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Ash
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby Ash » Mon Apr 21, 2014 1:45 pm

I haven't been discriminated against, and it hasn't been too bad for me. When I first brought Fable out to Utah, my neighbors asked a policeman that lived on the same street to come over and investigate. Not sure why... I already told both the neighbors AND the police department about him and that he was legal. But over time, those neighbors actually came to really like Fable, and one of their kids even did a report on him for a school project and had their picture taken beside him.

The contractor we had for our house just shook his head when he saw Fable. Couldn't understand why anyone would want to own something that stinky that isn't even affectionate. He just didn't see how it was worth it, and he thought it was funny that I loved Fable so much. When I mentioned I was getting another fox this spring, he just shook his head again.

I think the average person's response will be like that.

For me, that's been about the extent of it. For some people it's way worse, but I try not to publicize that I have a fox.

But then there are the crazies who think foxes are dangerous, going to kill their children, give the neighborhood rabies. And don't forget the AR activists out there who think all animals belong in the wild and keeping them is a form of cruelty. You get people in between all those extremes though, and those are the people who need to be educated most.

When keeping exotics, you will eventually meet all of these types of people in one way or another. Whether it be a friend, someone you bump into, or some anonymous person online. It's just kind of part of owning a fox.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, salamander, 3 tarantulas
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Alynn
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby Alynn » Mon Apr 21, 2014 4:52 pm

I've had people ask if she had rabies or warn me that this 12 lb animal was going to 'turn' on me and kill me somehow despite weighing as much as my cat.

When I was rehoming her, I had a sanctuary I called scold me for having a 'wild animal' (despite me knowing that this sanctuary had taken in pet foxes before) and told me that they couldn't help and suggested I call the zoos (despite me knowing that zoos seldom take privately owned animals).

That's about the extent of it, thankfully my neighbors loved her and did not complain about the noise or the smell. I would absolutely not recommend getting a fox living in an urban area though until you really have your legalities secured, and your relationship with your neighbor is good.

Zebrafox had issues when she was having her enclosure built - the neighbors constantly calling the police/complaining even before the fox got there, and it got to the point where the town actually changed the legislation making it illegal for her to have a fox before she even had a fox, and she just didn't want to fight it and left, which I would have done too.

We've also had peoples' foxes in the community being set loose by people who didn't believe they should have them, and one person on the boards' fox was struck by a car and died, about a year to the day actually.

And you know Vader's story.

Best advice I can give you is to be extremely thorough about your legalities. Check city ordinances, check county ordinances, check state laws, keep records of everyone you talk to that says you can't/can have a fox. Get it in writing, get the names of the officials. Keep the sale receipt, keep the certificate of health (any good breeder should provide these), keep a copy of the city/state/county laws, and keep it handy at all times.
Check this thread for what to do if the police come knocking:
viewtopic.php?f=63&t=7062
I would not recommend leaving private property with a fox. Anyone can claim your fox bit them or scratched them and have the fox taken away, like what we saw with Vader.
People in the community have double doors, locks, security cameras and alarms to make sure no one tampers with the enclosure. Keeping people (and animals) out is just as important as keeping a fox in. You don't have to be as thorough as having security cameras and an alarm, but at the very least I would have an extra layer of fencing and a lock on the enclosure door.

A lot of people think it's fun to have a fox for the novelty and telling all their friends, but the reality is, the more people who know you have a fox, the more likely it is that you'll find someone against it and willing to harm your fox to have them taken away.

I personally didn't walk my fox just because the amount of attention she got on walks made me very nervous, plus there was a time that we took her out in public in a crate and I had to swat people's hands away who kept trying to shove them in her crate.

Basically, have the law on your side and have all the evidence proving the law is on your side, and be very picky where you take your fox and who knows/sees your fox.
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Lupercus
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby Lupercus » Sun May 11, 2014 1:38 pm

Does having your job threatened because you smell like fox count?
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ringtailroxy
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby ringtailroxy » Thu May 15, 2014 11:54 am

I've been ostracized by my coworkers and professional peers because of my fox. The incident with Graphite last year just solidified their conclusions.

I got Ashitaka the first week of May. He's now 5 weeks old and goes to work with me every shift... one of my vets is so adamant about her stance on wildlife pets that she refuses to look at him!

I feel that as veterinary professionals, we are obligated to provide all medical attention, share knowledge, promote animal welfare, and be the experts in animal care. To deny, discourage, or outright ignore any animal and it's wellbeing goes against the oath I took to "dedicate myself to aiding animals and society by providing excellent care and services for animals, by alleviating animal suffering, and promoting public health."

It's discouraging, but I find that the new veterinarian graduates are the most accepting. My own VT friends have protested, but once they meet Ash and see how sweet and happy he is, they melt.

It will take a long time for us to get fox the acceptance they deserve. I can only think that at one time, early people where questioned by their society as well for keeping wolves and proto-dogs in their domiciles.

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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby BlueBaby1023 » Thu May 15, 2014 1:03 pm

ringtailroxy wrote:I've been ostracized by my coworkers and professional peers because of my fox. The incident with Graphite last year just solidified their conclusions.

I got Ashitaka the first week of May. He's now 5 weeks old and goes to work with me every shift... one of my vets is so adamant about her stance on wildlife pets that she refuses to look at him!

I feel that as veterinary professionals, we are obligated to provide all medical attention, share knowledge, promote animal welfare, and be the experts in animal care. To deny, discourage, or outright ignore any animal and it's wellbeing goes against the oath I took to "dedicate myself to aiding animals and society by providing excellent care and services for animals, by alleviating animal suffering, and promoting public health."

It's discouraging, but I find that the new veterinarian graduates are the most accepting. My own VT friends have protested, but once they meet Ash and see how sweet and happy he is, they melt.

It will take a long time for us to get fox the acceptance they deserve. I can only think that at one time, early people where questioned by their society as well for keeping wolves and proto-dogs in their domiciles.


I feel the same. A majority of my peers in vet school and just finishing undergrad like myself think it's insane at first, but are definitely way more open about it than older vets I've spoken with during shadowing. When confronted with the question of why domesticating dogs thousands of years ago was okay, but suddenly domesticating animals now is horrible, most people don't have an answer. I like to think it makes them think more about it, but some people will never change their opinions.

With that said, I've been fortunate enough to go to a vet who treats not just the domestic exotics, but "wild" ones as well, like foxes, owls, skunks, etc. Here in Oregon, these are typically owned by exhibitors but nonetheless, she gives a fair approach to any animal. Sad to leave! I hope that West End Animal Hospital in Florida will be as welcoming; they are listed on the vet list here and have some of the best ratings in the area as well as being AAHA accredited.

Good luck with your babies, they sound adorable and I cannot wait for one of my own. :lol:
4 Fancy Rats
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1 Holland Lop Rabbit
1 Rex Rabbit
2 Ferrets
1 Lutino Cockatiel
5 Mixed Breed Cats
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Ash
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby Ash » Thu May 15, 2014 4:17 pm

Aw, that's too bad. I never understand why vets do what they do if they are so discouraging of treating certain species? You would think they would be more welcoming when it came to treating exotics. Certainly it must be neat to one day have someone with a fox drop by after seeing hundreds of cats and dogs day after day? Maybe not. :shrug:

My vet loves exotics. I think she said she owned a monkey before at the clinic, and she also goes out to the USDA-licensed facilities to give shots and things. When I last spoke with her and she found out I'm hoping to get USDA-licensed this year, she got so excited and asked me if she could be my vet. I wish all vets were like her. She loves all animals--from dogs, to foxes. She even treated my snake when he got an RI.

I've heard the argument in the case of dogs that us domesticating the wolves was a "mistake." And now we are cleaning up after that mistake by caring for the ones that remain while enforcing spay/neuter laws so that they can die out and we can just be left with wolves again. :roll: Crazies are everywhere...
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, salamander, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby BlueBaby1023 » Thu May 15, 2014 11:48 pm

Ash wrote:Aw, that's too bad. I never understand why vets do what they do if they are so discouraging of treating certain species? You would think they would be more welcoming when it came to treating exotics. Certainly it must be neat to one day have someone with a fox drop by after seeing hundreds of cats and dogs day after day? Maybe not. :shrug:

My vet loves exotics. I think she said she owned a monkey before at the clinic, and she also goes out to the USDA-licensed facilities to give shots and things. When I last spoke with her and she found out I'm hoping to get USDA-licensed this year, she got so excited and asked me if she could be my vet. I wish all vets were like her. She loves all animals--from dogs, to foxes. She even treated my snake when he got an RI.

I've heard the argument in the case of dogs that us domesticating the wolves was a "mistake." And now we are cleaning up after that mistake by caring for the ones that remain while enforcing spay/neuter laws so that they can die out and we can just be left with wolves again. :roll: Crazies are everywhere...


Well, I think to your first thought the answer would be no. There are still what we call "zebra" cases ("when you hear hoofbeats and you're looking for a horse, you don't see the zebra") regularly in cat and dog medicine; and most vets, like human doctors, specialize. The difference is that human doctors specialize in field within one animal, whereas most vets that specialize do so in a specific species, not within medicine (like oncology, cardiology, etc.). But, there are still plenty of those kinds of specialties for vets too.

As for that last bit... That just makes me want to facepalm. People truly are idiots. :wall: And that's not even the first time today I've wanted to do that; earlier someone thought the percent on milk meant how much percent water it was... Oh the general lack of knowledge in our population these days... :roll:
4 Fancy Rats
2 American Guinea Pigs
1 Holland Lop Rabbit
1 Rex Rabbit
2 Ferrets
1 Lutino Cockatiel
5 Mixed Breed Cats
1 PitxLab
1 Great Pyr
1 Greyhound
2 Great PyrxAnatolian Shepherds
2 Red Foxes
5 Goats
~100 chickens, ducks, and turkeys
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby Laughing Hyena » Mon May 19, 2014 11:31 am

Even Dogs get this type of discrimination not just Exotics in my neighborhood if you own either a Rottweiler, Pitbull or Doberman the neighbors will talk bad about you and treat you like an outcast. They'll be like oh don't go near him he has a dangerous dog when in reality my neighbors dog who was a pitbull was the sweetest dog ever.
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby bubblegum » Wed May 21, 2014 9:24 am

I know I'm new as a fox owner but I have had experience with other exotic pets/"wild animals" for example my raccoon Dixie, everybody loved her, if anything, people wanted to meet her and take her picture and play with her. And my sugarglider, I snuck him into restaurants and if someone happened to see him, they were so intrigued that they never even questioned me having an animal in a restaurant, I didn't advertise of course but he always poked his head out when he was ready for another bite of my food.

I've read on here many people saying to keep your fox a secret but I have also seen some people who decide to do the exact opposite, I guess I have chosen to be one of those people. My coworkers, family, and friends are all aware of my newest addition, I share pictures and stories, they all want to meet him. I even took him fishing, we went to pet supplies plus and picked out toys and we even took him to a little park by my house. I've had people ask me about him and everyone thinks he's just the most amazing thing. The most negativity I've gotten is from my mother in law because she thinks he will bite her grandkids's fingers off lmao! I do worry about my neighbor across the street, however. He hasn't seen gambit and personally I don't want him to, he's the most anal person, he cuts his grass 3 times a week, he has the nicest yard for miles and I have a feeling he would be a douche about there being a fox in the neighborhood.
We are taking it one day at a time, but I refuse to hide something I love, in fear of someone else's disapproval.
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby Ash » Wed May 21, 2014 12:53 pm

bubblegum wrote:I know I'm new as a fox owner but I have had experience with other exotic pets/"wild animals" for example my raccoon Dixie, everybody loved her, if anything, people wanted to meet her and take her picture and play with her. And my sugarglider, I snuck him into restaurants and if someone happened to see him, they were so intrigued that they never even questioned me having an animal in a restaurant, I didn't advertise of course but he always poked his head out when he was ready for another bite of my food.

I've read on here many people saying to keep your fox a secret but I have also seen some people who decide to do the exact opposite, I guess I have chosen to be one of those people. My coworkers, family, and friends are all aware of my newest addition, I share pictures and stories, they all want to meet him. I even took him fishing, we went to pet supplies plus and picked out toys and we even took him to a little park by my house. I've had people ask me about him and everyone thinks he's just the most amazing thing. The most negativity I've gotten is from my mother in law because she thinks he will bite her grandkids's fingers off lmao! I do worry about my neighbor across the street, however. He hasn't seen gambit and personally I don't want him to, he's the most anal person, he cuts his grass 3 times a week, he has the nicest yard for miles and I have a feeling he would be a douche about there being a fox in the neighborhood.
We are taking it one day at a time, but I refuse to hide something I love, in fear of someone else's disapproval.


It is good for exotics to get the publicity they deserve. I've just heard of so many things going wrong, and it makes me paranoid. So many owners have brought their exotics out in public, someone pets it, it nips, and then it gets euthanized, and then it makes the public question the "lenient" laws. I'm "friends" with Rexano on facebook, and they report every instance of this, and it seems to happen unsettling-ly often. So while I think it is good for the public to see your fox, just be very careful. Because a small accident can easily turn into something that instigates a ban on foxes in your locality, which hurts more people.

When you do start running intro trouble with the law (even if you are 100% legal), you may change your mind. Or after the first year of keeping your fox. I do appreciate the public being able to see your little one, and the cute example he is, but do keep in mind that one small thing can turn into a tragedy. So be careful if you feel this is the right option for you. For many, they walk their foxes out in public and absolutely nothing goes wrong, so hopefully you'll be one of those people.

But at the same time, I perfectly understand not wanting to live in fear. We shouldn't have to live in fear. These animals are the center of our lives, they are our passion. Should we really hide our hobby? How does that help spread exotic awareness? Like I said, it's a difficult question to answer, regardless of whether you choose to keep your pet quiet or take it out in public. There are good and bad sides to both options. I may walk Ifrit once she's vaccinated a little bit down the road, but I would never choose to take her to a store, for example.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, salamander, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby bubblegum » Wed May 21, 2014 6:08 pm

Yes i fully understand the concern because people are close minded and cynical and most of them don't have a clue! I am very guarded with him around other people, even friends
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Re: Discrimination and worse?

Postby bubblegum » Wed May 21, 2014 6:11 pm

When he gets bigger I might not be as open with him, but like I said, one day at a time :) I wouldn't intentionally put him in danger or anyone else for that matter. Things could go wrong taking a dog to the park even, you just never know, people and animals are both unpredictable no matter how well you may know them.

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