We visited Feather the red fox today after the deep snow of the night. She was her usual lovely sweet mischievous self, fur full and glossy. We brought her some guests, as she always likes to greet everybody, her little inquisitive black nose sniffing, examining, assessing. They were enchanted by her sweetness, agility, curiosity; by her eagerness to meet them and visit with them.
She is an elderly fox now, with the feel of wisdom that many living creatures seem to gain with age. Jean went to a fur farm some 11 years ago and bought her as a little kit. (It always astounds me that you can go “buy” a wild animal.) That is eleven years of life given to her; eleven years of life for that dancing diminutive piece of vitality. One out of 800 foxes!
So many questions: a Buddhist who visited her wondered aloud – what was her karma that she was picked out of 800 foxes, to come here and have a life? I don’t know, but I do know that she has done a splendid job helping people see the magic of foxes; of balancing the fact that yes they sometimes do eat chickens and cats. That difficult balance we have to find between loving a predator that is part of our family, say a cat, and also loving a predator that is not so close to us emotionally, yet acknowledging their right to live too.
So it comes down to family and tribal loyalty versus the recognition that we are all part of something larger.