Canadian Marble Fox Facts: (Are They Good Pets?)

Last updated on March 31st, 2024 at 01:11 pm

The Canadian Marble Fox, a captivating subspecies of the red fox, is a creature shrouded in mystery and beauty. Its striking black, white, and silver coat resembling marbled patterns has become a symbol of the northern wilderness.

With its stunning appearance and enigmatic nature, this fox subspecies has captured the fascination of many. However, before deciding to bring a Canadian Marble Fox into your home, it is essential to understand the complexities and challenges of owning such a unique animal. In this article, we will explore the characteristics of Canadian Marble Foxes, their suitability as pets, and the ethical considerations surrounding their ownership.

Key Points:

  • Marble foxes, the result of crossbreeding red and silver foxes, boast thick, stunning white fur with grey, black, or tan streaks. They are highly sought after as exotic pets.
  • However, it’s important to note that many U.S. states prohibit keeping foxes as pets, and ownership may be restricted in your area.
  • If you wish to own a pet fox, you’ll need a spacious, enclosed outdoor pen complete with a roof and a three-story tower. Foxes enjoy straw, dirt, and hiding spots for play and a significant amount of attention.
  • While marble foxes might not be the cuddly type, they possess unique personalities and are known for their independence. But be cautious, as they tend to run away if given the opportunity. Thus, a secure enclosure is essential.

Classification & Overview

KingdomAnimalia
PhylumChordata
ClassMammalia
OrderCarnivora
FamilyCanidae
GenusVulpes
SpeciesVulpes vulpes gattingeri
Size Male 18-27 inches (46-69 cm)
Female 18-20 inches (46-51 cm)
WeightMale 6-21 lbs (2.7-9.5 kg)
Female 3-8 lbs (1.4-3.6 kg)
Lifespan6-12 years
ColourWhite with marble grey marking
DietOmnivorous
HabitatCaptivity
LocationAcross the Northern Hemisphere
PredatorsDogs, coyotes, wolves, humans

What Is A Canadian Marble Fox?

It is also worth noting that the Marble Fox, also known as the Canadian Marble Fox or Arctic Marble Fox, is not an independent species, not occurring naturally. This animal was “created” by humans by artificially breeding red and silver foxes. They are mostly white with grayish-black or brownish “accents,” and have a pointy muzzle and fluffy tail, like their relative, the only difference being that Marble Foxes are slightly smaller . The terms “Canadian” and “marble” in their name simply refer to their habitat and fur style, not indicate a separate species. This classification may confuse some people, but in reality, it is purely a designation to indicate this subspecies more clearly compared to other types of Arctic Fox.

What Does A Canadian Marble Fox Look Like?

Canadian Marble Fox

A genuinely strange and almost cat-like animal, the Canadian Marble Fox is a white, fluffy, captivating puzzle with grayish-black rings around its eyes and eyebrows that look like a burglar’s mask. This animal, adorned with elegant symmetrical eye black spots, has dark in its little ears, and in combination marching bears, adding to it a mythical creature’s allure. The colors of the little irritable creatures may differ from pure black to brown; however, their truly captivative look stays the same.

Where Does The Canadian Marble Fox Live?

The Canadian Marble Fox does not exist in the wild but is produced by breeding. Its name was given after the arctic/silver fox parent which comes from Arctic regions in northern Canada . There are some mentions of wild individuals, but the majority of these foxes are bred in captivity. They can be found among reputable breeders in the US and Canada. In the wild, Canadian marble fox has no noticeable advantages over the parent breeds expect for possibly more hairy fur. They are expected to be solitary hunters but sometimes form packs. The primary source lies in the Arctic zones of northern Canada, so they are called Canadian marble foxes

3 Interesting Canadian Marble Fox Facts

1. They’re probably Norwegian

Marble foxes are not a separate species, but a variety of red fox, Vulpes vulpes, which often can be seen rummaging for food in cities . The color of their fur is proof of selective breeding. These foxes are most often bred for their unusual light dappled coat usually by mixing their genes with a melanic red fox-type, also called a silver fox, which has dark fur . This is the same pattern mutation that causes black leopards, as an example of how panther is not a species of its own but a “melanic” variant of a leopard or jaguar. The earliest recordings on this topic suggest that the first marble foxes came from Norway, and from there, they were obtained from fur farming operations . But the first marble fox was supposedly born in 1945, from a litter of silver foxes.

2. They don’t make good pets!

Despite ostensibly being tamed, marble foxes are hard to handle. Zoos fight uncomfortable to house them on account of their high energy, prone loud apparatus, and misleading tactics. They request careful consideration, bestow associations with people readily, however require customized living spaces to endure. There should be outlets for their flavourful damaging inclinations . Their emission likewise has a noticeable scent, and their settings can be hard to clean, making them unsuitable inside creatures. It is testing to get them to focus on the home, as they won’t have a beeline for urinate, making preparing bothersome. It tends to be hard to discover qualified vet care for marble foxes as well.

3. Their colouration is a product of domestication

Like a few dog breeds and farm animals, marble foxes share color patterns with their wild-living cousins and present floppy ears and a reduced skull size, which are considered typical signals of selective domestication. This phenomenon is a subject of numerous researches referred to as Domestication Syndrome, which aims to explain why and how specific sets of changes emerge among domesticated species. The model to study Domestication Syndrome has been domesticated fur farm foxes, which paved the way for numerous genetic experiments explanting the link between the regulated selection of specific traits in breeds and unintentional impacts . In this context, marble foxes were selectively bred for tameness and displayed some characteristics of the most common domestication traits but did not become the overall adequate household pets due to the lack of numerous domestication-related traits.

Fact Sources

Canadian Marble Fox

In The USA: Being wild or exotic pets, foxes, get fully banned in keeping them as pets in everywhere states. In 35 conditions, owing a fox pet is illegal while 15 conditions allow it . Even in legal states, one might be required a tight permit or license to own fox in the homes. Arkansas, for instance, gives permission of the pet of any fox, while other states will give permits to own certain species making life unbearable for marbled fox breed because the fox is a hybrid.

States Where You Can Keep Any Fox As A Pet:States Where Permit Is Required:
ArkansasIndiana
FloridaKentucky (permissible only if obtained in-state)
MissouriNew York (fennec fox only)
MichiganNorth Carolina
NebraskaWyoming (red fox, grey fox, swift fox only)
North DakotaUtah (red fox only)
South Dakota
Oklahoma
Tennessee
Ohio

In Canada, many parts of the country prohibit keeping foxes as pets to protect wildlife. For instance, British Columbia safeguards foxes under the Wildlife Act as native wild animals. The following provinces also have similar laws in place:

  1. Alberta
  2. Manitoba
  3. Newfoundland
  4. Nova Scotia
  5. Nunavut
  6. Ontario
  7. Saskatchewan
  8. Yukon

It is also necessary to research the regulations of local laws in the area of living to make sure foxes are allowed to be kept as pets. Both responsible pet ownership and the abidance by the regulations that protect wildlife are inevitable for the safety of wild species and ecology. When owners realize that they cannot maintain proper conditions for the animals, marble foxes are sent to sanctuaries to take care of them.

Source

What Makes Them Special?

Their strikingly beautiful fur sets marble foxes apart – thick, coveted, and adorned with grey, black, or tan streaks. Beyond their captivating appearance, they also exhibit remarkable intelligence.

Their distinctive symmetrical facial patterns, including rare black stripes on some individuals, make them even more unique. Marble foxes are intentionally bred to achieve various blends of grey, black, and brown, akin to marble patterns. Additionally, their exceptionally furry muzzle and large ears add to their appeal. In summary, marble foxes are captivating creatures known for their extraordinary fur and intriguing intelligence.

Beautiful Fur

The Canadian marble fox is aptly named for its coat that mimics the intricate patterns of marble. Thin, delicate streaks of gray, black, or tan swirl around their mostly white bodies. According to science, their peculiar coloration is due to a genetic mutation known as a “color phase.” Their outstanding hue typically covers their spine and lovingly drapes over their faces, often giving them the impression of people wearing old-fashioned burglar masks . This unique color pattern and genetics factor make Canadian marble foxes unique for beauty purposes and how their captivating features are developed.

Cunning Intelligence

Another reason why Canadian marble foxes are so famous is their brains. It’s no coincidence that the word “cunning” is combined with the word “fox” in numerous phrases and sayings. It is a great idea to give them riddles just to keep them busy and entertained. If you are fortunate, a fox will be too engrossed in playing with toys and the puzzle rather than plotting to steal items from your home. They are a lot of fun to talk with. Their intelligence level makes them more interesting.

Read Also: Agile Animals

What Type Of Food Do Canadian Marble Foxes Eat?

Being foxes, Canadian Marble Foxes, and foxes, in general, are omnivorous and have a varied diet. They feed on small rodents – rats, mice and voles, rabbits, fruits, vegetables, insects, and carrion . Besides, they can steal food from other animals, so it is recommended to keep their food bowl tightly sealed. In domestic living conditions, dry and wet dog food and any meat, if possible, are eaten without problems. The diet must be balanced and suitable for keeping a fox as a pet.

What Is The Reproduction Of Canadian Marble Foxes?

Canadian Marble Fox

The reproduction of Canadian Marble Foxes includes a gestation period of about two months and litters of 1 to 13 kits , with the most frequent number ranging from 4 to 6. Newborn kits are blind, with the weight of about 150 grams . They are usually fully weaned at around ten weeks if fed mothers milk and treated as adults at about six months. To protect and raise her pups, the mother fox creates a den, with the male being able to help out, secure food for the family. The mother takes care of them during the first few weeks, wet-nursing, and maintaining their temperature. As they develop, she gradually introduces them to a diet of solid food in a balanced manner from the first few weeks. At around 3 to 4 months old, the young foxes begin to leave the den.

How To Keep Canadian Marble Foxes As A Pet?

Keeping a Canadian Marble Foxes as a pet is a rewarding but demanding responsibility. To ensure their well-being and a positive pet-owner relationship, consider the following essential factors:

1. Cage Size: Provide a spacious cage of at least 100 square feet, with a minimum height of four feet, to allow ample room for the fox to move and play, reducing the likelihood of aggression.

2. Location: Place the cage in a secluded area away from curious guests to prevent the fox from feeling stressed or combative. Avoid standing water or wet ground, but offer sloping terrain for their natural digging behaviour.

3. Accessories: Create a comfortable environment with shelters for protection from the elements and abundant vegetation, wood, and branches for enrichment and play.

4. Vaccination: Schedule regular visits to a veterinarian for necessary vaccinations and routine check-ups, treating the fox like any other pet.

5. Exercise & Training: Dedicate ample time to exercising and training the fox, providing at least two hours of daily activity to fulfil its energetic nature. Socialize baby foxes with people to foster trust and familiarity.

6. Interaction & Bonding: Spend quality time interacting with your fox, using your voice and verbal cues to establish a strong bond and trust.

7. Harness Training: Train the fox to use a harness from an early age to facilitate safe outdoor walks on your property, minimizing disturbances from the public.

8. Cleaning & Grooming: Though they are generally clean animals, address the natural odour from their scent glands and urine using a water-vinegar solution to clean the cage regularly. Add a thin litter layer for added hygiene.

What Is The Canadian Marble Foxes Life span?

In the wild, Canadian Marble Foxes typically live for about 5 to 6 years. However, with proper care in captivity, they can live up to 8 to 10 years on average, and sometimes even reach 15 years or more.

Things to Understand Before Getting a Fox

  1. Marble foxes aren’t cuddle buddies. They’re independent and often not affectionate.
  2. They’ll bolt if they can, so secure enclosures are a must.
  3. Don’t try to discipline them like dogs or cats; it can backfire.
  4. Beware their strong smell, akin to skunk odour, which might not suit scent-sensitive folks.
  5. They enjoy digging to cool off, so expect holes in your yard if you keep one.

Meet Raven and McCoy at the B.C. Wildlife Park

In 2020, amid the pandemic, the B.C. Wildlife Park in Kamloops, British Columbia was experiencing financial trouble. Nevertheless, Raven and McCoy, two rescued marble foxes came to the park’s rescue as they quickly became popular among the locals. As soon as the park opened, the charming faces of the foxes became the talk of the town that drew residents and tourists alike, attracting as many as 4,300 visitors that year . Watch the video of the two gorgeous foxes below.

Conclusion

Canadian Marble Foxes are truly charming, engaging animals with their extraordinary marbled fur and stunning appearance. Nevertheless, Canadian Marble Foxes are a cross between red and arctic foxes, so they need extra time and attention that can be unsuitable for an unexperienced owner. Therefore, it is important to remember about their happiness and their wild roots . Moreover, it is important to make an effort to conserve them to keep these wonderful creatures and their native ecosystems alive. In the end, Canadian Marble Foxes can be seen wild where they thrive, and humans can protect them only by understanding and idea these stunning creatures.

FAQs 

1. Are Canadian Marble Foxes legal pets?

In the USA, the legality of owning Canadian Marble Foxes as a pet varies by state. While some states may allow it, many have strict bans or require permits. In Canada, many provinces have laws protecting wildlife, making it illegal to keep foxes as pets. It is essential to research local laws and regulations to ensure compliance.

2. What do Canadian Marble Foxes eat?

Canadian Marble Foxes are omnivores and have a varied diet. They consume small rodents, fruits, vegetables, insects, and carrion and can eat dry or wet dog food or meat in captivity. A balanced diet is essential to maintain their health and well-being.

3. Can Canadian Marble Foxes be kept as pets?

Keeping Canadian Marble Foxes as pets requires significant effort, experience, and adherence to legal requirements. They are wild animals with specific needs and behaviors, making them challenging pets for most people.

4. Do Canadian Marble Foxes require special care?

Canadian Marble Foxes need specialized care, including a spacious enclosure, proper nutrition, socialization, and mental stimulation. Wild animals may exhibit challenging behaviors, so understanding their instincts is crucial.

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