A man became best friends with a fox after the sick animal was rescued from the side of a road.
The red fox was named Cropper and was rescued by The Fox Project in Turnbridge Wells in England. Seriously injured and ill with toxoplasmosis, he could not be returned to the wild. There were only two choices: euthanize him or find him a home.
The rescue opted to save him and Mike Trowler ended up giving Cropper a home. A retired engineer, Mike is fascinated by fox behavior and spends a great deal of time with them.
In addition to nursing injured foxes back to health, he also takes in orphaned fox cubs and raises them until they can be released back into the wild.
After he took in Cropper, Mike patiently nursed the fox back to health. Cropper would eat food from the dog’s dish and curl up with the cats and loved to spend time with Mike. The two would go for walks together and Mike would roll him over and give him belly rubs. This video tells the story of the pair’s loving friendship.
After six happy years with Mike, Cropper passed away in 2007. However, another fox, Jack, who had been suffering similar illnesses, has moved in with Mike. Jack enjoys watching TV with Mike and even reluctantly tolerates a bath in the sink.
Foxes should not be kept as pets and the only reason Cropper and Jack could not be returned to the wild is that they would not have survived because of their health problems. Mike cautions that rescuing foxes takes a great deal of patience and understanding, and a strong awareness of fox behavior.
The Fox Project is a Wildlife Information Bureau and Fox Deterrence Consultancy that was established in 1991 in the UK. They added a Wildlife Hospital in 1993. They admit and treat around 700 foxes and 250 cubs annually.