Can Foxes Climb Fences? (And how to avoid it)

can foxes climb fences

In regions where foxes are widespread, foxes are one of the most challenging pests for homeowners to deal with. They’re quick, have keen teeth, and are far more intelligent than insect infestations or rodent problems.

So, can foxes climb fences? Foxes can climb most fences. Foxes can jump up to 3 feet and climb up to 6 feet using their claws. To get over a fence, they would sometimes climb surrounding objects such as trees. As a result, if you keep a pet outside, you’ll need to think about other ways to keep them secure.

If you try to keep foxes out, there’s a good chance they’ll find a way back in.

You may believe that erecting a barrier is the best option. After all, foxes are quick and clever, but they can’t jump over walls, can they?

With that in mind, here are a few pointers to help you outsmart those foxes and keep them out of your yard.

What you need to know about foxes

To “defend” oneself against these foes, you must first learn more about them. The fox is a medium-sized mammal with the look of a dog. They consume meat and are great at tracking down prey. Foxes use claws to climb various surfaces, but they may also be used to dig. Foxes use excrement to mark their territory. When they emerge in your yard, the fox will only stay there for a short time or until they complete their mission.

How to keep foxes from entering our backyard

First, we must consider what drew the fox into your yard in the first place. The solution is straightforward: food. Attempt to eliminate and eliminate everything that might provide a quick meal for the fox. If you have a pet or poultry in the yard, protect them as well, especially at night.

We recommend enclosing the animals in a substantial hut or wire mesh to prevent the fox from harming them. In addition to huts, foxes can be deterred by cages, barracks, light sensors, and the greatest defense is a fence. You may either fence the entire yard or only the area you wish to keep safe.

Some fences can be excessive if you’re safeguarding smaller animals like guinea pigs and rabbits. A safe, strong, and predator-proof hutch is what you’ll need. The finest hutches are long-lasting and include a robust, thin wire mesh to keep foxes out.

If you have chickens, you may want to investigate installing electric chicken fences. Add a sturdy wire mesh canopy to your electric chicken fence to keep foxes out of your backyard coop. The shock isn’t strong enough to kill or seriously hurt the animal; it’s just enough to scare them away from trying to break through the chicken fence again.

It is no need to be terrified about using an electric fence. Even hens, after a while, usually find out how to get past the barrier. To put it another way, it’s an open circuit. Electrons migrate from the fence to the ground when the animal comes into touch with it, completing the circuit.

The animal has a transient muscle contraction in response to the electron flow. Because their fur is poor at electrical conduction. If the voltage is set too low, it protects them against electric fence shocks.

Assume, however, that you construct an electric fence. To avoid short-circuiting, you’ll need to mow the grass or other plants at the bottom of it regularly. Consider constructing a self-contained fence with your own set of rules and boundaries.

Foxes are extremely intelligent and clever, although they may be jittery. They are very conscious of their little stature and rely on stealth rather than physical power to survive.

They’re opportunistic predators who may be quickly scared away, so unless they’ve been domesticated or are mainly accustomed to humans, they’re unlikely to visit your home. That isn’t to suggest that if they’re desperate, they won’t try to get closer. Though you may expect to encounter a fox in the woods, you might be shocked to see one in a city.

One technique to keep foxes at bay and safeguard your animals is to have pet cages near the home. Only the most adventurous predators will approach if hutches, cages, coops, and playpens are placed close to the house. Foxes may be deterred by using motion sensor lights.

Which fence should you pick?

When picking a fence, keep in mind what you want to protect (or who you want to protect)., if you need a fence to protect yourself from foxes or other predators, how to maintain the fence, and what your budget is.

Electric fence

An electric fence is a terrific way to keep your chicken safe. When the fox comes into contact with this fence, the shock will not kill it, but it will surely scare it away from your poultry. The hens will eventually learn to avoid the fence and become accustomed to it. At the same time, the foxes will be unaware of what awaits them, despite their cleverness.

What is the purpose of this fence? When the animal contacts the fence, the electrodes cause muscular contractions, and the fur acts as an insulator. The only thing to remember is that there should be no short circuit between the fence and the grass. Electric fences are the most costly, but they are also the most effective kind of security.

Wire fence

This fence style is an excellent approach to keep foxes out of the chicken coop by preventing them from burrowing and thus crawling among the birds. Subsequently, bury the wire fence at least 50 cm underground. Other animals, not just foxes, will find it challenging to get through the barrier.

It’s also a good idea to build a wire roof so that no one can get into your chicken coop from either side. To prevent predators from biting the wire, make the poles steel and the wire 1 cm thick. This is the cheapest approach, and it is also the most convenient because you can pick the size and shape of the enclosure. While an electric fence is often used to protect hens, a wire fence may protect larger animals.

Tin fence

For the fox, a tall tin fence is a formidable barrier. The foxes are prevented from climbing by the slick surface, and the height should be such that the fox cannot traverse it (more than 3 feet). If you want to safeguard rabbits that can walk freely in your yard, this is the perfect option for you. Not only will this fence protect rabbits, but it will also protect all of the animals in your yard from predators of all types.

The best fencing to keep foxes out

Fencing can help keep foxes out, but it is not an impenetrable barrier. Outside the enclosure, increased fox control in a buffer zone might make fencing much more effective. A roof on your cage might stop a determined fox.

The local environment must also be considered while picking the appropriate fence for your circumstance. The design of the fence will be influenced by factors such as terrain, substrate (soil, rock, etc.), plant density, climatic conditions, and geographic location.

Most fence designs, including chicken fencing, are made out of wire netting and electric wires. The wire netting (one and a half to two-inch diameter hexagonal) prevents foxes from pushing through the base of the fence; if rabbits are to be kept out as well, 1 inch mm diameter is required. Electric wires are utilized as additional deterrents, even though they are ineffectual on their own. Wire spacing and placement might differ.

Remember that foxes are excellent diggers, so burying the wire netting at least 450mm underground or attaching it to a concrete or hardwood floor may be advantageous, especially if the enclosure is tiny. An apron of netting slanted outwards for 300 to 600mm across the ground at the foot of the fence is another excellent alternative. In regions of soft terrain or watercourses, aprons should be fastened with weights or pegs.

Because we know how good jumpers and climbers these cunning pests are, several designs are twice as tall as the usual (1,800 mm). They employ additional netting or different electric wire spacings. The cost of the fence will naturally rise as a result. Predators may be deterred from scaling the fence if the overhang faces outward. Electric wires can be used as additional deterrents in these overhangs, which might be floppy or firm. An entire wire netting ceiling is one alternative for tiny enclosures.

Foxes regularly attack fence posts and corners. Particular attention should be paid to these areas. It will be more challenging to scale steel posts than it will be to scale wood posts. Climbing will be discouraged by more netting at the corners—stronger weak places in the mesh and connections to keep the foxes away. A wire thicker than 0.9 mm is impossible for the predators to gnaw through.

Ways to avoid foxes from entering your yard

1. Get rid of attractions

Before you spend all that money on something, consider why all of these foxes are visiting your house in the first place. What keeps foxes coming back when they have better things to do than wreck up your yard?

The answer is most likely related to what you have in your yard. Foxes will not take to the trouble of scaling a high wall unless something useful on the other side.

For a fox, this usually signifies they sight or smell something that looks like a tasty lunch.

Are you attempting to keep foxes away from your dogs, birds, or cattle in your backyard or farm area? If that’s the case, you’ve got your answer right there.

Anything from the fragrance of prey to the sight of chickens running around or in their coop might tempt foxes to become unwelcome guests and penetrate your property in search of a tasty meal.

They’ll cease paying them “a visit” if you don’t have animals in your yard for a time.

Other things you can do to keep a fox out of your yard include:

  • Remove any food scraps.
  • Remove loose compost containing fish or other organic products that foxes might mistake for food.
  • Cover any sources of standing water, especially at night.
  • Stop putting fish, blood, or ground-up bones in your fertilizer.
  • If you have fruits or vegetables growing in your yard, make sure to harvest them when they’re ready rather than leaving them on the ground as a buffet for foxes to enjoy.
  • Shoes, dog toys, and other items that foxes could use as playthings should be kept indoors.

2. Use fox repellent

This is about as direct a response as you can get to fox invasion. If foxes continue to visit your property despite your efforts to make it less “attractive” to them, your next best option may be to repel them completely.

However, you should avoid using fatal force to deter foxes. For one reason, in other locations, this may be deemed cruel and even unlawful.

After all, you’re not “hunting” foxes so much as attempting to remove them off your land, which doesn’t necessitate such a terrible and tragic non-solution.

Instead, think about using a humane fox repellent. To keep foxes away, you can apply one of two types of repellents.

There are scent-based repellents, for starters. Foxes, like dogs, rely heavily on their sense of scent to encourage and lead them. Something that smells nice will attract them, while something that smells bad will repel them.

Aluminum ammonium sulfate and Methyl nonyl ketone, for example, are two odors that foxes despise. Sprays containing these fragrances may be beneficial in luring foxes away from your property.

When it comes to fox repellant, the location is crucial. You don’t want to squander your money by spraying fox repellent all over your property, whether it’s cheap or costly, and you also don’t want to smell fox repellant all over your property. As a result, you’ll need to spray your fox repellant in more strategic locations.

Spraying fox repellant near veggies, for example, isn’t the greatest or most attractive idea; instead, spray it on the soil around and leading up to the area, warding off foxes well before they get there.

If you have any pets buried in your yard, you must spray fox repellant on top of their grave to avoid horrible fox graverobbing.

Another apparent spot where fox repellant might help is at your property’s entry points.

Finally, keep in mind that foxes are territorial, which means they might leave “leavings” behind to “mark their territory.”

If they have done so, spraying repellant over top of the “leavings” locations may confuse foxes, as they rely on their sense of smell to detect their scent and decide where “their territory” is located.

However, such repellents may make you wrinkle your nose. If you find that idea too revolting to consider, you might want to consider giving foxes a taste-based repellant instead.

Pepper sprays and other extra-spicy sprays, for example, can help deter foxes. However, this approach has the significant drawback of requiring the fox to eat it for it to be effective, so if they ignore it, the repellant will not function.

3. Fill up the holes

If foxes aren’t coming to your yard for food, they may be looking for a place to stay. Foxes prefer dark, secluded locations to hide in.

If you have such locations on your land, you should fence them off so foxes can’t use them as dens.

Check to see whether there are any animals already living there (because enclosing still-alive animals is both unlawful and cruel), and then take whatever procedures are necessary to seal the space.

4. Invest in a guard dog

This is a straightforward response — after all, dogs are known as “Man’s Best Friend” for a reason.

Not all canines are suitable for chasing foxes. If foxes are bothering your yard, breeds which tend to be little in size or puppies are more likely to become fox food than fox deterrents, so keep them inside.

Nonetheless, hounds and other large dogs make ideal fox guard dogs as long as they aren’t long-term friends with a specific fox.

5. Use your hair

This is an amazingly economical option whether you’re a barber, know one, or have given yourself a haircut and are wondering what to do with the trimmings. Human fragrance may be enough to deter foxes from pestering your property.

If that’s the case, scattering human hair around your home will help deter them from visiting or remaining.

6. Play some tunes

Foxes rely heavily on their sense of hearing in addition to their sense of scent. Playing music or something else from a radio or something similar might deter foxes who aren’t fond of the noise. However, this may not be a feasible solution if you or your neighbors want to sleep.

7. Let the scarecrows guard your yard

Although putting up a “Scarefox” does not have the same ring, the core concept remains the same.

Build a scarecrow and place it at your property’s entrance or anywhere else where the fox may see it.

You can mix it with the previous steps, making it play some tunes and filling it with hair. This way the fox will hear and smell humans and decides to go away.

8. Build a fox cage

Let’s assume you’ve tried a few of these techniques, and the fox in question still refuses to listen. If that’s the case, it’s time to think about taking more drastic actions. You may get rid of a fox once and for all by catching and caging it.

However, it should be noted that this is a far more severe alternative than the ones listed above, as well as a considerably more expensive one.

You should only explore this choice after you’ve exhausted the other possibilities, and even then, only if you’re an experienced fox trapper who is confident in your ability to do so humanely and successfully.

Again, you don’t want to hurt the fox, and you certainly don’t want to fail to capture it, as this would make them protective and hence even more deadly.

There are a few things to look for in a good fox cage, and the most important is the size. You must ensure that the cage is large enough for the fox to fit comfortably within and for them to see the entrance as one worth entering in the first place.

A tiny or narrow opening won’t fool any foxes into entering, and it wouldn’t be humane to do so anyhow.

When in doubt, go for the larger cages rather than, the smaller ones.

The fox usually triggers a fox cage by entering the area or standing on a push pad, closing the metal cage. This usually signifies that they have a sliding release door.

While one sliding door may suffice, having many doors boosts your chances of success, as the fox can enter the cage through various routes.

However, you’ll need to make sure that all of the cage doors in question slam shut and stay shut when they’re activated.

You’ll also want to put some bait in the cage to entice the foxes to come inside.

The fox is likely to be shocked after the cage has been triggered and the fox caught. On the one hand, this is logical. Yet, a trapped wild animal may be exceedingly deadly, especially one with sharp fangs and claws.

You should never put your hand inside the cage after the fox is inside.

To avoid this, look for a cage with a handle so you can carry it without poking your fingers in the wire holes.

However, this may still be pretty hazardous, so proceed with caution and only do so if you’re sure you know what you’re doing.

Final Thoughts

Do foxes have the ability to scale fences?

Foxes are capable of climbing fences; in fact, they excel at it.

Their inherent ability to jump 3 feet, along with their claws and climbing abilities, makes them extremely tough to keep out of your property.

If you have pets, you should do all possible to keep them secure. The right line of action will be determined by whether they are larger or smaller creatures.

However, electric fences and motion sensor lights are fantastic options that many pet owners have found quite effective.

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Emma Olsen
I’m a gardener and blogger with over 20 years of expertise writing about and cultivating fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers. I have extensive experience in organic and sustainable gardening, perennials, annuals, and sustainable and urban farming. I’m a nature freak and I enjoy bird watching and swimming with sea creatures.