Fennec Fox as Pets? Things to know before taking them as pets!

Fennec Foxes pet

Scientific name: Vulpes zerda
Conservation status: Least Concern Encyclopedia of Life
Height: 20 cm (Adult)
Trophic level: Omnivorous Encyclopedia of Life
Mass: 0.68 – 1.6 kg (Adult)

The fennec fox are the only species in the Fox family that can be kept as a pet.

So if someone asks you, can fennec foxes be pets?

Say Yes!

It is a nocturnal animal of small stature whose natural habitat is the dry Sahara of North Africa. It has exceptionally large ears whose function is to dissipate heat away from its body.

Its other bodily features, like its coat and kidney functions, are adapted to the desert environment. It has sensitive ears which have the capability of picking out even the slightest of sounds.

In comparison to its body size, its ears are rated as the largest in the Fox family. Its main specialties include small mammals, insects, and birds.

Its greatest predator is The African eagle owl.

How long do Fennec foxes live?

The Fennec fox can live up to 14 years in captivity and is considered as an exotic pet in other parts of the world outside of North Africa.

Fennec foxes Diet:

Fennec foxes are omnivores, eating an eating routine of creepy crawlies, rodents, plants, organic product, and reptiles.

The perfect eating routine for pet fennec foxes would presumably be a business wild canid consume less calories, (for example, zoos would bolster), however most proprietors will sustain a blend of puppy nourishment, feline sustenance, vegetables, and organic product with great achievement. A few reproducers will then again prescribe an eating regimen of crude meat, vegetables, and a vitamin blend.

They are sometimes very unpredictable and hyper, and you should be careful with them. When feeding them, it is advisable to avoid giving bones especially those that are cooked.

Cooked bones are not safe even to dogs.

If you must give them bones, you need to give them uncooked bones because Cooked bones are brittle and can harm their throat and intestines. Also to be avoided include spicy foods, pepper, onions, chocolate, and dairy.


How much is a fennec fox?

The fennec fox weighs about 1.5-3.5lb with a body length of about 20-40 cm and is regarded as the smallest canid species in the world. Its tail is about 20cm-30 cm long and has a black tip.

Facts about Fennec foxes:

  1. Fennec foxes have a mature weight of just 2 – 3.5 pounds.
  2. The fennec fox seems to be the only carnivore living in the Sahara Desert able to live well without free water.
  3. Fennecs can be found purring like a cat when they are happy.
  4. They are very social animals and live in colonies in the wild of up to 10 other foxes.


  5. They are listed as threatened in the wild by CITES.


  6. Fennec foxes are the smallest wild canid.


  7. During breeding season, vixens may develop “love handles,” or alopecia on their sides.


  8. Vixens are similar to felines in that they are seasonally polyestrous.


  9. Fennecs must remain warm and will shiver if the air temperature goes below 68 degrees Fahrenheit.


  10. They are nocturnal, but do like to lie out in the sun.


  11. Fennec foxes can climb out of outdoor enclosures, and dig up to twenty feet underground a night, so it is

    important to provide a secure area for them to exercise in.


  12. They have a scent gland located on the tip of their tail that can give off a musky odor when the fox is startle.


  13. Fennecs can survive up to 14 years in captivity if well cared for.

Are fennec foxes endangered?

Due to their population size, they are regarded as CITES II animals which mean that they are not an endangered species. They are considered illegal to keep as pets in some places of the world but not in others.

How much does a fennec fox cost?

Fennec foxes cost approximately $1500-2000!

Where to buy a fennec fox?

You can visit your nearest zoo to enquire about fennec fox.

The name, Fennec, is an Arabic word which means fox while its species’ name zerda means dry in Greek. This is a desert animal that can adapt to high temperatures and low water levels. Most fennecs are bred while they are still kits and are hand-reared because they can easily be tamed and handled at this early stage.

The fennec foxes are classified along with coyotes, jackals, and the arctic fox as small wild/exotic canid.

baby fennec fox diet

However, fennecs are easy to get along with due to their friendliness and energy. Fennecs should not be treated like any other domestic animals since they are exotic animals. Although they cannot be compared to domestic animals, they are more or less like a combination of a cat and a dog.

They have the size of a cat, but their energy and playfulness are like that of a dog. They are agile and cuddly like a cat and indulge in mutual grooming and nibbling which is not aggressive.

This type of behavior helps to strengthen social bonding among them. In the wild, Fennec foxes live in communities and are very social.

Fennec fox legality:

The legality of keeping fennecs as pets differs in different jurisdictions. It is best to check with your country or county to see if they are legalized before you decide to keep them as pets.

fennec fox as pets

You should also be able to know which licenses and vaccines are required for the fennec fox in your territory. In addition to that, tolerance should be practiced when dealing with fennecs because they are still wild animals with instincts even though they are living in a home environment.


On hygiene, the fennec fox does not need regular baths because it is an expert in self-grooming. In case they need a bath, it is good to wash them in a sink and avoid using running water because it scares them. You can use any dog or cat shampoo or cleanser to wash them.

In general, fennec foxes as pets make good house pets which can be enjoyed by the whole family.

Mating in fennec foxes:

This fox is a monogamous animal that mates with only one partner in its entire life. The female fennec fox reproduces only once a year and has a gestation period of about 50 days. It gives birth to a litter of between two to four cubs.

baby fennec fox

The male fennecs are domineering and usually, mark their territorial boundaries using their urine. They also engage in stiff competition for female partners during the mating season.

The kids are weaned off from their mother after about 70 days and reach maturity within a period of 10 months.

So this was all about Fennec Fox as Pets.

baby fennec fox as pet

Also Read: Pygmy Marmoset as Pet

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