Foxes have a reputation for being cunning, intelligent and curious and that reputation is well earned. These distant relatives of the domestic dog are sly critters who have learned cohabitating alongside humans is a sure ticket to food abundance and security. While they occupy a valuable space in our ecosystems, problems arise when they become your next non-paying tenant or roommate.
Have a fox problem? We can help.
Are you having fox problems? Call Critter Control today at (574) 825-1079 in South Bend and Elkhart,
or (260) 632-5106 in the Fort Wayne area and our trained staff will be there to help your fox removal.
Foxes exist throughout the northern hemisphere, from the arctic circle throughout Europe and North America to the northerly reaches of central America, Africa and Asia. These four-legged critters range from two and a half to three and a half feet long, with fur ranging from white to reddish brown hues, with the most common colors being copper and gray with white markings. Distinctly canine in appearance, foxes are slimmer and swifter than dogs and smaller and less bulky than wolves or coyotes.
Are Foxes Dangerous?
Foxes prefer to avoid conflict, and thus will evade confrontation or direct contact with humans and pets as much as possible. Nonetheless, these omnivores are driven by their need for food and shelter. As opportunistic predators, foxes will gladly help themselves to small livestock such as poultry or even small domestic pets like rabbits and cats. Avid scavengers, foxes can tear through garbage cans, gardens and compost bins looking for tasty scraps. While they will go out of their way to avoid a fight, foxes will aggressively defend their burrows and their young.
Problems with Burrows
Foxes dig underground burrows, which can pose a tripping hazard for people, pets and livestock like horses and cattle. Their burrows can compromise the structural integrity of sheds, outbuildings or even homes if constructed in the wrong spot. Because they construct these dens in well-hidden areas, you or your family pet could find yourselves in harm’s way if you should unknowingly stumble across one.
Diseases Spread by Foxes
Like other large mammals, foxes play host to fleas, ticks, lice, worms, the mites that cause mange and other parasites. Like most mammals, they’re a vector for rabies and transmit the virus through their saliva. Anyone experiencing a fox bite should seek emergency medical treatment, as left unchecked, rabies is inevitably 100% fatal.
Foxes also act as vectors for tularemia, which can cause fevers, swelling and rashes. Transmitted by skin to skin contact, both live foxes and fox carcasses can transmit this illness, meaning you may be at risk if your family dog drags home roadkill or a successfully hunted fox.
Identifying a Fox Problem
Because of their cunning ability to avoid people, it can be hard to determine if you have a fox problem in your home, yard, garden, business or on your property. Aside from spotting these nocturnal creatures becoming active at dusk or returning to their burrows at dawn, the most obvious sign of a potential fox problem is noticing their droppings.
Fox feces look similar to dog or coyote feces, but smaller. Light tan to dark brown in color, fox droppings tend to be about two to three inches long with pointed ends. Observed droppings may contain undigested pieces of fox meals, including bones, fruit seeds and plant matter.
What to do About Foxes
Foxes can easily evade traps and attempts at removal. Luring foxes into traps may prove futile, and the most common coil spring traps available are often less than humane. Unless other food sources are absent, foxes will decide the bait in a trap isn’t worth the hassle and seek sustenance elsewhere.
Because of their intelligence, fox removal is best left to professionals like the ones at Critter Control. Our wildlife experts can safely, humanely and effectively trap and remove foxes from your home, business or acreage. Additionally, using Critter Control ensures you’re adhering to any local laws about trapping foxes – which may be illegal or seasonally allowed, based on your jurisdiction.
By leaving fox removal in the capable hands of the experts at Critter Control, you’ll minimize your risk of injury and disease, and can learn how to better exclude foxes from your property through a variety of methods to prevent a repeat visit. Give us a call today at 574-825-1079 to get started.