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Fox vs Dog

A red fox standing on a snow covered stump.

Many of us are lucky to have one or more dogs as pets in our homes. We love them because they are all so cute, loyal, and loving. But we never heard of a fox being domesticated. Simply because it can not be.

Dogs have always been friendly with humans, just like a family member. In contrast, foxes are wild and tend to keep a distance from humans. Despite their physical resemblance, foxes and dogs have several other differences that mark their identity.

Foxes and Dogs belong to two different classes of the same family, Canidae of the Animal kingdom. These biological look-alike cousins have various distinct features. Foxes are naturally wild and shy. In comparison, dogs are tamed as pets and are known for their affectionate human companionship.

Imagine you bring a cute little puppy home as a pet, hoping it to become your most loyal future friend. But as he grows up, you come up with a whole new species, A FOX! Baby foxes and pups are generally very similar. Do not worry. Here is the finest debate on fox vs. dogs for all cool pet lovers out there.

Table of Contents

Physical Dissimilarities between Fox and Dog

A red fox cub walking on a grassy field.

The following points will help you figure out what it is, in fact, a fox or a dog.

Foxes Are Smaller than Dogs

Foxes and dogs may vary in size, but generally speaking, dogs have a higher height than foxes.

Difference In Snout

A dog’s snout is not that long as that of a fox. A fox’s snout is also much more pointed.

Bushy Tail

Foxes have a very bushy tail. Usually, dogs do not have such tails.

Pointed Ears

Dogs’ ears may be softly cornered, not so pointed, and maybe droopy. On the other hand, foxes have sharply pointed ears.


There is a range of dogs’ weight from less to more because of the height difference. In general, dogs are found to be much heavier than foxes.

Head and skull

Foxes have triangular heads with smaller skull sizes than dogs.

Comparing Life Span of fox and Dog

Close-up of a red fox making eye contact.

Foxes have a shorter life span. They can live for 2-4 years in the wild and live for 6-8 more years in captivity. Unlike foxes, domestic dogs have a much longer life span of up to 14 years.

Fox vs Dog: Social Behaviour

A pack of obedient Border Collie sitting near the lake.

Dogs are very social and human-friendly. Domestic dogs prefer to live in packs or groups. At the same time, foxes are incredibly shy around strangers, be they humans or nonfamily animals. They are not accustomed to humans, which is one reason we can’t tame them.

Why Can Dogs Be Trained Easily But Not Foxes?

Policeman with police dog on duty.

Dogs are kept as pets in 38% of houses in America. They can be domesticated and trained to follow a wide range of commands. Labradors, a clever breed of dogs, are trained by CIA teams because these dogs can sniff more than 19,000 explosive scents. Isn’t it cool?

Dogs can be trained because their brains are built to take and effectively process different thought patterns. The communication skills of dogs are far better, and they have got a quite good memory span. But this is not the case with foxes. Their nervous system is not compatible with learning commands. Foxes’ memory spans are very short of memorizing words, actions, and reactions.

Some Other Reasons Why Foxes aren’t kept As Pets

  • They need very large secure enclosures as the place to live.
  • Usually, foxes are very shy. So they are not easily befriended with any other pet.
  • They are hell stinky and can not be de-scented by any means.
  • Foxes are destructive animals.

In short, foxes can not be reliably domesticated. They are adapted to living wild and free.

Who Will Win A Fight? Fox or Dog?

Close-up of an aggressive dog barking.

Foxes and dogs come up with the same family, and fights do occur between cousins too. Who do you think is going to win?

Many of you would already have guessed right. A DOG will be the winner at the end of a fight because of two reasons

  • Fox is cunning and shy. It will hide and avoid any direct confrontation with a dog.
  • Dogs are bigger than foxes. A fox will only fight with animals smaller than its size.

Can Dogs And Foxes Be Friends?

Close-up of American foxhound sitting on the park.

Have you seen ‘the Fox and The Hound’ in your childhood? Yes, the same Disney movie we were fond of! Let me tell you a similar recent story of two cute furry friends.

Everyone who has ever had a dog knows very well that dogs are quite friendly and caring creatures. That is why they get along with almost any animal. One of the cutest dog-fox duos is Moose and Juniper. Moose, an Australian Shepherd and Malamute mix breed, seemed excited when he first saw Juniper. It was a cute little fox that was rescued and brought home by Moose’s owner. Soon they became friends and are now quite popular on social media. Impressive!

Can A Dog And A Fox Make babies Together?

A red fox sitting in the middle of the forest.

A dog and fox cannot mate with each other. The simple reason is that they do not have compatible parts. Besides being different in morphology, their chromosome number also do not match. Therefore, technically and biologically, dogs and foxes can not make babies together. They are two very different species.


Foxes and Dogs are two different animals sharing common ancestors in their family. We always find dogs to be frank, accustomed to humans, dutiful, and loyal. They are easy to train and prove to be the best pets every time. In comparison, foxes are shy, solitude-seeking, and cunning animals that can not be domesticated.

When it comes to befriending, dogs are winners. When it comes to fighting, dogs are winners again. Foxes are adaptive to wildlife, happy in their own world. It appears as they are like very introverted sort of animals. But one thing is common in dogs and foxes. Both are beautiful. Aren’t they?

References: The Truth about Dogs vs. Foxes

Multi level marketing: Quick Answer: Can A Dog And A Fox Mate?