Domesticated Fox – What To Consider When Buying

Domesticated Fox – Fennec Breeding Season

domesticated foxOur site has all the information you need for buying your first domesticated fox, please look at the information below and follow the links for further information.

As you may know the fennec fox breeding season is underway, taking place between January and February. The gestation period for a fennec is about 50 days meaning that many breeders will have pups available for prospective buyers usually around March and April. A litter is typically made up of 2-5 pups. Often it is recommended to buy a younger animal when dealing with domesticated foxes. However, with fennec foxes it is better to buy them at around 3-5 months old. They are difficult to raise and bottle feed and this is best left to the experts. Fennec foxes are only semi-domesticated so when keeping a fennec fox as a pet it is important to imprint on them early and form a strong bond if you are to have any hope of training them. You can find some basic training tips on our fennec fox training page.

The Law

In addition, every US state has varying rules for a domestic fox and the rules are different again for red, gray, arctic and other breeds of foxes. In many cases, a fennec fox falls under the exotic pets category. If you are not already aware of the law then please check your state laws regarding fennec foxes. We have done all the hard work and compiled a huge list for almost every state of the US and Canada regarding domesticated foxes. Check out our fennec fox pet legal states page.

The Breeder

When buying a fennec fox the number one important factor is finding a reputable breeder! Every US state has different rules regarding exotic pet ownership and in states where the rules are less clear, breeders can be more shady. Make sure that your breeder is USDA licensed and operating within the law. If your state allows it, I would recommend importing your fennec from a reputable state where breeding programs are regulated in line with the law. Also unlike your average domesticated fox such as red foxes or grey foxes, remember that the fennec fox falls under exotic fox species. Also some breeders pull the kit immediately from their owner to give to the buyer, unless you are very experienced this is usually bad as raising the kits at this stage is extremely difficult. Always contact the breeder first, or speak to other owners that have had experience using certain breeders. For a complete list of domesticated foxes for sale look at our fennec fox for sale page.

The Cost

Number two is the cost. It is not just the initial cost of buying a domesticated fennec fox that is expensive. Ongoing vaccinations, vet bills and food add up over time as well. Consider that a fennec fox can live up to ten years old. One of the worst things you can do to a fennec fox is put it up for adoption and try to re-home it! A domesticated fox will often be extremely stressed in a new environment and never adapt to a new owner making re-homing extremely difficult. We made a rough breakdown of total costs for owning a domesticated fox, check out our fennec fox price page. furthermore here is a rough guide to the vaccinations that you should consider for your baby fennec fox.

The Gender

Furthermore there are finer details to consider; even their gender. While not a huge deciding factor, people generally recommend keeping males as pets. In the wild, it is the female that leads the pack making them instinctively more aggressive and territorial ( although this can happen in males too). This behavior typically starts around 1-2 years old  in a domesticated fox even with a strong bond. Males tend to be a bit more hyper and noisier than females but many people think this is better than the aggression. Ultimately, it is the buyer’s decision. Lastly, this should go without saying, if you keep 2 genders together then make sure they are neutered!

The Home

They tend to bond well with other animals that are the same size or smaller than them. Also, they may bond better with your pets than with you. If you keep small rodents or prey animals then it is a disaster waiting to happen. Never house other pets in the same cage as a fennec fox. Also, fennec foxes love to hump things, even more so than your average dog. Try to re-direct their attention to a large stuffed toy early to avoid being their humping target yourself. For more information about how fennec foxes interact with other pets and children see our other page.

Fennec foxes can burrow, jump high and are lightning quick. It is important to have a secure home with no chance of them escaping. In some states it is even a perquisite for owning a domesticated fox. It is also important that they remain in a n environment with an agreeable temperature. here is our article on fennec fox housing.

To summarize, here is a list of things to consider before buying:

  • Check your states legalities concerning a domestic fox or exotic pet.
  • Understand they are hard to potty train and there will be mess.
  • Make your home secure so they can’t escape.
  • Socialize and train from young, only positive training.
  • Expect loudness and hyper-activity.
  • Make sure you have plenty of time to spend with your pet.
  • Make sure you have your own house, ideally detached.
  • Find a local vet that deals with exotics.

If at any point you are unsure of what to do or can’t find any information there are many resources you can access on the internet as well as owner groups on Facebook that can give you advice. We also have a page where we interviewed some current owners for more information.


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