Are you wondering what foxes eat? They have a diverse diet. They are excellent hunters catching and killing smaller animals that are below them in the food chain. Their prey includes rabbits, small birds, frogs, and rodents, among other small animals.
For this reason, you might assume they are carnivores, but the truth is that they are omnivorous. They feed on berries, fruits, and vegetables. For urban foxes, they tend to scavenge for leftover food in the dustbin.
Table of Contents
- Foxes Habits and Biology
- Do Foxes Eat Dirt?
- What Do Foxes Like To Eat Most? (Fox diet)
- Food to Avoid Feeding Foxes
- Tips to Feed Foxes
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Foxes Habits and Biology
Foxes live in diverse habitats, including mountains, grassland, forests, deserts, and the human environment, such as suburban areas and farms. Their resourcefulness has made them be recognized as the most cunning and intelligent animals in the juggle. Like cats, their thick tails help with balance, warm cover, and communication with other foxes.
How do animals know they are stepping into their enemies’ territory? Every animal has a distinctive manner in which they mark their habitat or home. For foxes, they mark their territory using their urine, faeces and scent. Scent can also be used during the breeding season to mark their reproductive status. How big is the foxes’ habitat? Their territory ranges between 2kms to 5kms. Their population density and food availability influence their habitat size. In some areas, there are more foxes than others, and in such a case, they will have a significant habitat compared to places they are few.
While foxes are omnivores, they are solitary hunters catching smaller animals like rodents and rabbits. They also eat fruits, vegetables and those living near the human environment scavenge for leftovers in the dustbins. They hide in their habitat during the day, which is usually a hole underground or a hole at a big tree. At nightfall, they leap out to go hunting and patrol their territory. They are generally described as opportunistic predators and scavengers.
In a day, they eat about 300g to 450g a diet comprising small prey such as birds, rabbits, and mice. Though they are omnivores, they only eat fruits and ground nuts when there is food scarcity. However, when food is abundant, they will hunt excess and bury them for seasons like winter when the food is scarce.
In early spring and during winter, foxes meet to mate. The gestation period usually lasts 51 to 53 days, and 2 to 12 cubs are born. Winning takes about four to six weeks. During this period, both parents take care of their young one before they can start hunting independently at the beginning of the fall when they are between 10 and 12 weeks. By the time they reach six months, they are independent. In one year, both males and female reach their sexual maturity, and they start to disintegrate from the family and move to a new environment to establish their own
Their population is primarily managed by various diseases such as parvovirus and distemper, predators higher in the food chain like the leopards and humans. Also, during food scarcity, foxes can feed on young and week foxes, thus reducing their population.
Do Foxes Eat Dirt?
Foxes are known to have a broad diet ranging from meat to fruits and nuts. They are also known to hunt excess food when abundant and bury it for when there is scarcity.
Such meat will get dirt from the soil, but foxes will still eat. They dig up the earthworms and groundnuts, which are generally covered in dirt, and eat them.
More so, city foxes and those living close to humans scavenge for food in the dustbin, packed with other dirt.
What Do Foxes Like To Eat Most? (Fox diet)
1. Meat protein diet
Foxes’ diet is primarily made of meatproteins. They like cooked or raw meat. Though they are omnivores, they like hunting small animals like rabbits, rodents, and birds.
They hunt from evening through the night. For those living near the city or human habitats, if you want to feed them, you can give them cooked meat, and they will keep visiting your home.
2. Canned pet food
They also love tinned pet food like Pedigree chopped ground dinner wet dog food. These are dog food. If you have a dog, you can choose to share them with foxes visiting your home. You can also order specifically to feed the foxes.
3. Fruit and vegetables for foxes
Do foxes love fruits and vegetables? Foxes love vegetables like frozen vegetables, cherry tomatoes, and they would eat them all through the day. Several teaspoons of vegetables daily would do the trick for young foxes and large spoons of vegetables for bigger foxes.
How do I know if I am feeding a lot of vegetables to a fox? Observe their stool, and if you notice to compose a lot of vegetable matter, there higher chances you are feeding it a lot of veggies, and it is necessary to reduce them.
Similarly, fruits like cherries and berries should not be provided as the main diet but rather as a treat.
4. Foxes love taurine
Taurine is a form of vitamin supplement necessary for fox’s health. It can be found in dog foods. If it is not part of the ingredients from the tin in which you are feeding your fox’s you can purchase taurine capsules.
For young foxes, about 500g daily is enough supplements, but adults might require more. However, this is not a requirement as they get vitamins from non-grain foods and small animals like mice, rodents, and insects.
Food to Avoid Feeding Foxes
Before diving into the specific type of food that you should avoid feeding your fox, any food that can hurt a dog or a cat is poisonous to your fox.
1. Avoid feeding grains to foxes
While foxes are known as wild scavengers, they do not eat grains in the wild. Therefore, under no circumstances should you feed them with a diet comprising grains like oats, rice or wheat.
2. Fruits like grapes and raisins
These fruits are known to cause vomiting, kidney problems, and hypercalcemia in dogs and foxes. Since they are lethal to foxes, they should not be anywhere close to their diet.
3. Avoid feeding foxes’ with pepper, tomatoes or green eggplant
These types of fruits are known to contain toxins called glycoalkaloids. Even the leaves and stems of these plants should be avoided.
While after the fruits ripen, the toxins are said to leave the plant and are safe for animal consumption, the fruits still retain their toxins level, making them not suitable for foxes’ consumption.
However, tomatoes can be fed but at a controlled level to prevent toxins buildup.
4. Avoid feeding green potatoes.
Green potatoes contain several toxins that are harmful to foxes. As such, care should be taken when storing potatoes to avoid being exposed to sunlight.
The potatoes should instead be stored in a light-proof sack. Any sprouting or green potatoes should not be part of the foxes’ diet as not even cooking can destroy the toxins.
5. Coffee and chocolate
When foxes are thirsty, let them take plain water and nothing else. Coffee, for instance, contains about 150mg of caffeine which is enough lethal doses to a fox.
Similarly, chocolate contains theobromine, a compound that is poisonous to many animals, including foxes.
Tips to Feed Foxes
Feeding wild animals is one way of getting closer to nature. Besides, when foxes are on the verge of becoming extinct due to numerous predators, including themselves, feeding can help them thrive.
Would you like to feed some foxes in your neighborhood, but you do not know how? The best way to feed foxes in your backyard is to try and give them the same diet they are used to in the forest.
A wild animal will always be wild, and no matter how much their diet might seem unsuitable, it is essential to maintain its neutrality as much as possible.
Feeding them with raw or cooked meat is excellent, and other canned pet foods and unsalted peanuts, fruits, and cheese. Below are some feeding tips:
- Establish a feeding program that encourages foxes to visit your home at a specific time by leaving some food out in the garden or backyard. The fox will get used to the program when they visit any other time, and they find nothing.
- Leave a bowl of water near the food.
- Leave enough food but not too much to become lazy to search for its food and become dependent on you.
- Feed them during seasons when their food is scarce in the wilderness, like during winter.
- Regularly clean your feeding utensils to avoid contamination and the spread of diseases.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. Can foxes climb fences?
Yes, foxes have claws that enable them to climb up a fence of up to six feet high
2. Can foxes jump up a fence?
Yes, foxes have the potential of jumping off a fence which is three meters high
3. Can foxes be pets?
No, despite their deceiving friendly appearances, do not make them your pet as wild animal will always be wild.
4. Can foxes swim?
Yes, foxes are like cats and can swim pretty well, and they truly do swim
5. Can foxes climb trees?
Yes, Foxes can climb up trees and especially the grey species
6. Can foxes eat chocolate?
No. Chocolate is poisonous to a fox and any animal of Canidae family.
7. Can foxes eat raw chicken?
Yes, foxes can eat chicken raw or cooked their primary diet is meat
8. Can foxes eat chicken bones?
Yes, foxes eat a wide variety of diet and can therefore eat chicken bone without any problem
9. Will foxes attack humans?
No, foxes are not a threat tohuman as they are higher in the food chain
10. Will foxes attack cats?
No, foxes belong to the same family as cats and therefore pose little or no threat to them
While foxes are omnivorous, you would expect them to eat fruit and vegetable only. However, they have a diverse diet which includes meat hunted at night and down.
Meat is their primary food diet, and they only eat vegetables when there is scarcity. As such, there is a wide range of food that you can feed foxes, but some are poisonous and should be avoided. However, do not try to tame a fox as a wild animal will remain to be wild.
What do foxes like to eat and drink? ›
Virtually anything. Being carnivores, they like cooked or raw meat and tinned pet food. Foxes also like other savoury items such as cheese, table scraps, bread soaked in fat, fruit and cooked vegetables. However, be aware that anything you put out for foxes could equally be taken by dogs, cats and other wildlife.How do you feed foxes? ›
The best way to feed foxes in your garden is to try and replicate their natural diet. Primarily this means meat protein so leave out cooked or raw meat, tinned dog food, or specially-formulated fox food like Wild Things. Your foxes will also be pleased with treats like unsalted peanuts, fruit and cheese.What is a red fox favorite food? ›
Red foxes prefer rodents and rabbits, but they will also eat birds, amphibians, and fruit. Red foxes will also steal food from garbage cans or farms.What are 3 things foxes eat? ›
They are expert hunters, catching rabbits, rodents, birds, frogs and earthworms as well as eating carrion. But they aren't carnivorous - they are actually omnivores as they dine on berries and fruit too. Urban foxes will also scavenge for food in dustbins, and often catch pigeons and rats.Do foxes like rice? ›
Foxes do not eat grains in the wild; therefore, you should avoid feeding things like wheat, rice, oats, and other grain matter in their food. Since foxes instead eat small prey such as mice and birds that eat grains, this is how they get some of the carbohydrates they need.Do foxes like milk? ›
Foxes will also drink milk if it's there, but as with dogs and cats their digestive system isn't really equipped to digest milk and it isn't good for them.Can foxes drink coffee? ›
Caffeine: The lethal dose of caffeine is 150mg per kg of body weight. Just keep coffee grinds, tea bags, mountain dew, etc. out of your pet's reach, and you'll be fine.Is chocolate poisonous to foxes? ›
- Chocolate: this tasty treat for humans is poisonous to canids. They can't digest it. It can make them very sick and even kill them (though if you have been feeding chocolate to foxes, don't feel guilty.What fruit do foxes eat? ›
Foxes will eat both wild and cultivated fruits (in some instances vegetables and crops, such as corn and barley, too) and those most commonly consumed include blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, persimmons, mulberries, apples, plums, grapes, dates, figs and even acorns.Do foxes need food? ›
It is thought that foxes need to eat around 500 grams of food a day but this can vary depending on who energy-rich their meals are. Is they have a highly nutritious meal then they might be able to survive on less but a lunch in bin scraps might leave them needed to top up their resources.
Do foxes like eggs? ›
Foxes generally carry eggs away from nests. They may then eat them or they will cache (bury) them for consumption later. The whole egg is taken in the mouth, crushed and the contents eaten.What is a fox favorite fruit? ›
Red foxes eat a lot of plants including grasses, acorns, tubers, grains, and even fungi. Although Red foxes enjoy vegetation, in the autumn, they prefer to eat fruits. Cherry, persimmon, mulberry (blueberry), grape, plum, apple, and raspberry are some of their favorites.Will a fox eat apples? ›
In the fall, it's fruit and berries like blackberries, apples and persimmons, plus acorns, sedges and tubers. What's their favorite fruit, though? Foxes seem to particularly enjoy eating wild apples. Foxes are mainly carnivorous, so most of their diet consists of small animals.Do foxes like bananas? ›
Certainly, if it manages to catch it. Foxes are carnivores and will eat any warm living animal it manages to catch.Will a fox eat a dead fox? ›
We know that foxes will kill other foxes and on rare occasions they may even eat the bodies, although this tends to happen only when conditions are very harsh. Fights are relatively common among foxes, but fights to the death are rare.Do foxes like spicy food? ›
They favour strong smelling or super sweet foods like fish, chicken, meant, and vegetables. There are a lot of DIY ways to repel foxes from your garden through just smell alone, this just shows how strong there sense of smell really is. They hate the following, Garlic, Chilli Peppers and Capsaicin.Do foxes like boiled eggs? ›
We also like to give our foxes hard boiled eggs in the shell as enrichment and the shell provides them with extra calcium. If you desire to feed your fox meat, it needs to be lean meat, cooked to avoid parasites. Like any animal, your fox should always be provided with clean water in a dish.Do foxes like honey? ›
Fox Food. Foxes are omnivores that eat nuts, fruits, insects, honey, leaves, acorns, other items from the forest and meat.Do fox like potatoes? ›
The RSPCA “living with foxes” leaflet advises people that “cheese, boiled potatoes, raw chicken pieces, bread and table scraps” are suitable foods to put out to “help foxes living in the area”.Do foxes like salt? ›
As is the case with the salt licks provided by Mother Nature, manmade licks are also frequented by a variety of other animals such as rabbits, groundhogs, foxes, gray squirrels, chipmunks and birds. Some birds definitely eat more salt than others do.
Do foxes like carrots? ›
In order to mimic their natural diet the foxes eat a raw diet. They get a variety of meats like quail, turkey, duck, rabbit, and other game animals she may have eaten in the wild. I mix this with some yummy veggies like green beans, carrots or peas. Then apples, sweet potatoes, peaches, or raspberries.Do foxes like cake? ›
Allow access to a food store, a fox will eat cake, poultry pellets, milk powder or fish meal. Fruit is also eaten; gooseberries, raspberries, blackberries and anything else that takes their fancy.Do foxes like tea? ›
Tea bags have a strong smell that most cats and foxes dislike, making them an effective deterrent.Can foxes eat onions? ›
Onion, garlic, and chives should also be avoided, as they belong to the genus Allium which can create a toxic reaction for your pet fox. Why is this so? They include a sulfur compound called disulfide that if eaten in large quantities can damage red blood cells. Dehydrated foods and meats should be avoided.Can a fox drink salt water? ›
He recalls an Australian laboratory experiment that found flying foxes prefer drinking diluted seawater over fresh water. “Belly dipping is a very common behavior in flying foxes,” he says, noting that they could be trying to cool off on hot days. “What is less common is that they do it in seawater.”Are potatoes poisonous to foxes? ›
Avoid feeding green potatoes. Green potatoes contain several toxins that are harmful to foxes. As such, care should be taken when storing potatoes to avoid being exposed to sunlight. The potatoes should instead be stored in a light-proof sack.Can foxes eat marshmallows? ›
All foxes love treats! Especially sugary treats. Many strangely go crazy for marshmallows and coffee so keep these out of their reach. If you choose to give a rare marshmallow treat, make sure you brush his teeth because sugar will decay a fox's teeth just like it does ours.Can foxes eat popcorn? ›
Bovril (high in salt, so small amounts only) Unsalted and unsweetened popcorn. Unsalted and unsweetened porridge. Tuna or salmon (fish can cause disease in foxes if it makes up more than 10% of diet)Can a fox eat grapes? ›
DEAR TERRY: Grapes and raisins can be toxic to foxes and dogs, so it's best to keep the grapes away from them. Science has yet to identify what it is in the fruit that causes the problem, but in some animals it can lead to kidney failure.Do foxes eat apples and carrots? ›
Red Fox eat fruit and vegetables, such as apples, pears, carrots, squash, and berries.
Do foxes eat ants? ›
Foxes love to eat meat, and their favourite food is protein-based items. Foxes will hunt and love to feed on small rodents, birds, and insects. Foxes love to consume insects as well, and insects make up a large portion of a fox's diet.Do foxes eat bread? ›
Putting a little bit of stale bread out for the foxes is usually fine, as long as you aren't doing it so frequently and in such volumes that it's inviting spoilage, encouraging them to foul (poop) in your garden, and changing their behavior too much (i.e. they start to hang out in your garden during the day, or ...Do foxes eat fish? ›
Foxes eat small mammals, fish, birds, eggs, insects, berries, and insects. They typically hunt during the evening hours, making them a nocturnal species. They prefer high-protein food rich in fat. Foxes are also known to travel from one place to another in search of food, but this depends on where they live.Do fox eat cats? ›
Do foxes eat or attack cats, dogs or other pets? A typical adult cat is almost the same size as a fox and has a well-deserved reputation for self-defense, so foxes are generally uninterested in taking on cats. Kittens and very small (less than five pounds) adult cats, however, could be prey for a fox.Can you feed foxes dog biscuits? ›
Foxes eat a very varied diet in the wild; from earthworms, insects, fruits, wild birds, and small mammals. However, the urban fox is pretty happy to eat most things from tinned cat and dog food, dry complete dog biscuits, and any cooked vegetables or table scraps.Can foxes eat cooked bones? ›
They are carnivores so like cooked or fresh meat and can cope with chicken bones without problem.Do fox like raisins? ›
Foxes love eating fruits, berries, and veggies, but they despise and avoid fruits like grapes and raisins as they can cause kidney problems, vomiting, and hypercalcemia, so always avoid giving these two lethal fruits to foxes.Do foxes eat lemons? ›
Foxes, on the other hand, do eat lemons - and apples and peaches and many other fruits too.Do foxes eat snakes? ›
They are omnivores and eat almost anything they can find. This includes smaller animals such as rodents, rabbits, lizards, snakes, and amphibians. It also includes plant matter such as berries, nuts and seeds. With such a broad diet red foxes are sure to find something to eat in almost any environment.Will foxes eat chicken? ›
Foxes will attack chickens in all hours of the day. They will hunt them during the day and at night. They are fast and sneaky, and it can be hard to identify a fox attack. Sometimes the chickens will simply disappear without a trace.
Do fox eat plants? ›
In general, foxes are omnivores, meaning, they can eat virtually anything that is good for food. However, the main reason why they dig up plants and vegetables is not that they want to eat them, but to reach the worms beneath them.Do foxes like fruit? ›
These animals are omnivores, so foxes eat anything from berries to small birds. They are opportunistic predators and scavengers. Food scraps, fallen fruit, and unsecured garbage cans may attract these wildlife pests.› what-do-foxes-eat ›
What Do Foxes Eat? They Spend Their Day Foraging for Food
What Do Foxes Eat? What Do Foxes Prey On? the Full List!
Red Fox Diet - What Foxes Eat
Red foxes eat a lot of plants including grasses, acorns, tubers, grains, and even fungi. Although Red foxes enjoy vegetation, in the autumn, they prefer to eat fruits. Cherry, persimmon, mulberry (blueberry), grape, plum, apple, and raspberry are some of their favorites.What are foxes most afraid of? ›
Bold foxes can be scared away by loud noises, water hoses, water guns and thrown objects, says the Humane Society. They also advise contacting your local “animal control agency, police department or health department” if a fox shows signs of rabies, mange or if your pet is bitten by a fox.Should I put food out for fox? ›
Generally we suggest people don't feed foxes, because it will undermine their territory if they can't be bothered to go farther afield. Also, foxes don't just take what they need – they take what's available and bury it for later.Do foxes like bananas? ›
Certainly, if it manages to catch it. Foxes are carnivores and will eat any warm living animal it manages to catch.Is chocolate poisonous to foxes? ›
- Chocolate: this tasty treat for humans is poisonous to canids. They can't digest it. It can make them very sick and even kill them (though if you have been feeding chocolate to foxes, don't feel guilty.Will a fox eat apples? ›
In the fall, it's fruit and berries like blackberries, apples and persimmons, plus acorns, sedges and tubers. What's their favorite fruit, though? Foxes seem to particularly enjoy eating wild apples. Foxes are mainly carnivorous, so most of their diet consists of small animals.Do foxes eat lemons? ›
Foxes, on the other hand, do eat lemons - and apples and peaches and many other fruits too.
What happens if a fox bites you? ›
What should I do if I'm bitten by a fox? Thoroughly wash the wound with soap and water and seek immediate medical attention. Prompt medical care will prevent a rabies infection. Be sure to report the bite to your local animal control agency, police department or health department.Will a fox hurt you? ›
Fox “attacks”, usually minor bites, on people are extremely rare and, generally speaking, foxes are not a threat to humans.Why do foxes cry? ›
Foxes scream as part of their mating rituals. Male and female foxes scream to attract a mate. A female fox will scream during the actual act of mating itself. Male foxes scream to mark their territory and warn off potential competitors for mates.What should you not feed a fox? ›
- Avocados: ...
- Caffeine: ...
- Chocolate: ...
- Grapes And Rasins: ...
- Green Eggplant, Peppers, and Tomatoes: ...
- Green Potatoes: ...
- Macadamia Nuts and Walnuts: ...
- Onions, Garlic, and Chives:
Always ensure you provide a bowl of fresh drinking water, this is particularly important during hot dry spells. Even if you don't wish to feed a visiting fox, a shallow bowl of water is always welcomed by our wildlife.Can I feed foxes cat food? ›
Feeding them just dog or cat food is usually detrimental to their health, as most dog kibble doesn't have the taurine needed and cat food is too high in fat. They also must have adequate amounts of calcium, foxes like other animals can easily go lame or suffer from not getting the correct nutrients In their foods.Does a fox like honey? ›
Fox Food. Foxes are omnivores that eat nuts, fruits, insects, honey, leaves, acorns, other items from the forest and meat.Do fox like potatoes? ›
The RSPCA “living with foxes” leaflet advises people that “cheese, boiled potatoes, raw chicken pieces, bread and table scraps” are suitable foods to put out to “help foxes living in the area”.Do foxes like fruit? ›
These animals are omnivores, so foxes eat anything from berries to small birds. They are opportunistic predators and scavengers. Food scraps, fallen fruit, and unsecured garbage cans may attract these wildlife pests.› red-fox-eating ›