Do Foxes Eat Cats? How to Keep Your Pets Safe


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Foxes have started to make their homes in neighborhoods and urban settings. This is due to human expansion and development. The more we take land away from animals, the more they must adapt to survive.

Foxes will eat small cats. However, it is not that common. Foxes are wild animals, that are opportunistic, and could attack, or even eat a house cat. You should exercise caution when dealing with a wild fox at your home. Foxes can be friendly, but to be on the safe side, we suggest observing them from a distance.

The same goes for foxes you encounter out in nature. Foxes are not considered a danger to humans, but if you or your pet encounters a fox in the wild, you should still be cautious. Wild animals are unpredictable, and smaller pets, such as small cats and dogs, can be prey to a fox.

Do Foxes and Cats get Along?

Foxes and cats have a lot in common. Adult foxes are almost the same size as adult cats and they have similar dietary needs. Foxes eat rodents and other small mammals, much like feral cats. It is a rare occasion for a fox to square up with a house cat, but it does happen.

In the case of pet foxes, or rescued foxes, they seem to get along with other animals in their home. If they are with other pets from a young age, they can form bonds with them. Pet foxes are only tamed, so they are still wild animals. So there is always a risk that their wild nature could kick in at any moment.

Wild animals can have diseases. Housepets and cats, even if they are outside cats, should be brought inside if there is a fox around. You would not want to risk exposure to a sick animal or the threat of danger.

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Will a Fox Kill a House Cat?

Foxes and housecats rarely come into contact. Wild foxes are very shy and do not make contact with other animals if they do not have to. Adult cats have very little to fear from a fox, however, small pets such as small cats, hedgehogs, and little dogs could be in danger.

Small cats and pets, should always be looked after and monitored if they are going to be outside. In the case of outside cats, they will have to fend for themselves, but they are notorious at being able to defend themselves. You can help by securing your property, mending fences, and adding additional fortification, if needed.

There are some instances, where a fox may be curious, and wind up face to face with a house cat. Also, there is always a chance, even if it is slim, that a wild animal could pick a fight with your cat. This is why you should secure your pets, by bringing them inside, if you see a fox nearby.

Do Foxes Hunt Cats?

Foxes do not hunt cats, as a food source. Situations where a cat is eaten by a fox, are rare in the wild. Feral cats that are adults are the same size as foxes, and the two would most likely avoid each other. They both eat smaller mammals, such as rodents and small rabbits.

Foxes are predators so there is always a chance that they will hunt what is available to them. They could also see an opportunity, if a cat is wounded, or is too young to defend itself. Even in urban settings, there is very little chance of your housepet getting attacked by a fox.

The statistics for cats killed by foxes in neighborhoods show that only a very small percentage of cats are killed by foxes in urban settings. In some cases, foxes can be mistaken for other predators, such as coyotes and wild dogs. Most of the information available is reported by homeowners, in online forums.

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How to Keep Your Cat Safe From Foxes

If you are worried that a fox is getting into your yard, and that your cat is in danger, then there are a few things you can do to help keep them safe.

Keep your cats indoors. This is the most effective way to keep them safe from any wild animal. Even if they are outside cats, if you see a fox or wild animal, you should bring your pets inside, where it is safe.

Fortify your yard. You can help keep wild animals and foxes out, by having a good fence. If your fence has any vulnerabilities, like holes, or boards that are broken, fix them. You can also put up a wire fence, into the ground, that keeps foxes from digging under the fence and getting in.

Scream and yell at the fox. Foxes get scared very easily. If you spot a fox in your yard and feel that you or your cat/pets are in danger, scream and wave your arms. This will help scare them away and may keep them from coming back.

What Do Urban Foxes Eat?

Some people see urban foxes as pests or vermin. They are not legally classified as vermin, and they help get rid of pests such as rodents. The urban fox’s diet is made up of several sources, such as rodents, food from trash bins, food set out by people, and whatever else they can find.

You should not feed wild animals, however, people do it anyway. In the case of urban foxes, they have adapted to living among us, and in some cases, are treated differently, despite them still being wild. It can be argued that feeding them is helping them since they have already made their homes among us, and started to adapt.

Our stance on the matter is not to feed any wild animal, even urban foxes. However, people will still choose to do so, so it is good to have information available, as to what is ok to feed them, and what is not ok.

If you are going to feed wild foxes or urban foxes, then try to stick to these types of food.

  • Grain-free kibble
  • Fruits like watermelon
  • Vegetables from the garden
  • Raw meat and cooked meat

There are also foods that you should avoid feeding foxes.

  • No chocolate
  • No pits from cherries or peaches
  • No grapes and raisins
  • No onions or garlic

Urban foxes mostly rely on rodents. This makes cats less of a target of being hunted but does put them in the same hunting territory as urban foxes.

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Do Foxes Eat Cat Food?

Foxes have been known to eat cat food. There are many reports online, of foxes eating from cat dishes left outside. Foxes are opportunistic and will eat from gardens, food dishes, and whatever else they can find. You could probably watch hundreds of videos from people’s security cameras on youtube, of foxes raiding pet dishes.

Foxes do have a similar diet as cats do. Even more closely to feral cats. However, household cat foods are fattening for a fox. Some pet fox, and rescued fox owners, will feed their foxes certain brands of cat food that are less fattening.

Some vets may even suggest a certain brand of cat food, for foxes. Exotic animal vets, usually have different opinions on the matter. There is is no handbook for raising foxes (That I know of.) I have seen some people argue over if this is the right thing to do, and in most cases, those who use cat foods, have healthy foxes. So the verdict is out.

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Do Foxes Eat Kittens?

In rare circumstances, a fox could eat kittens. While foxes will most likely not pick a fight with a full-grown cat, since they are the same size, they will seize on an opportunity to prey on the weak and young. This includes kittens, small pets, and older pets who are sick or wounded.

These types of situations are not all that common. It is more likely to happen in the wild, to feral kittens, than housecat kittens. In the wild anything is game. Foxes are opportunistic predators, that feed on what is available to them in their territories.

Foxes are Scavengers

Will a fox eat a cat? They will if they see them as easy prey. Foxes are scavengers and will prey on any animal that is small enough, and weak enough. They will eat from trashcans, gardens, chicken coops, and anything else they can get to, without being seen.

Foxes will eat dead cats and other dead carcasses, known as carrion. If a fox is eating a cat, there is a good chance the cat was already dead. Foxes will scavenge from roadkill, and carcasses left behind by other carnivorous predators.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do foxes eat dogs?

Foxes are opportunistic feeders and will feed on smaller mammals. This can include small dogs, or pups, that are too small to defend themselves. This would be uncommon but does happen. Small dogs and pets should be secured inside if there is a wild animal nearby.

Why do foxes scream at cats?

Foxes have a wide vocal range, where they screech and scream. They do not sound like dogs or other canids. Foxes may seem like they are screaming at cats if they see a cat in the area where they hunt. These are fox calls. Some are warnings, but mostly they are foxes communicating with foxes.

What animal do foxes eat?

Foxes eat rodents, rabbits, lemmings, and other small mammals. They rarely attack, or eat housepets. Wild foxes are omnivores and eat a variety of small game mammals, fruits, and vegetation.

Will a fox attack you?

Foxes avoid humans and are not considered dangerous unless they are wounded, or sick. Foxes carry rabies and mange. Diseased foxes should be avoided, and wild foxes should be observed from a distance, and not interacted with.

Chad Fox

Chad Fox is an author and researcher dedicated to bringing reliable information about foxes to the public. He supports animal sanctuary awareness.

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