Totem Animals Series: The Fox

For my first in a series on totem or spirit animals, I have selected the cunning, sly Fox. Recently, I encountered a pair of foxes on my way home, which lead me to question the rich symbolism that accompanies spirit guides or totem animals.


The Fox is most commonly known for being “sneaky.” This association is so strong that a recent and popular animated movie, Zootopia, highlighted it in one of the main characters. But is this the only association for this little fella? Far from it.

Here are some characteristics of the Fox totem that you might not be as familiar with:

  • Courage
  • Problem solving & strategy
  • Looking within and without
  • Powers of keen observation, including observing the unseen
  • Shape-shifting
  • “Invisibility” or camouflage
  • Silence
  • Feminine energy

The strongest message from fox is typically to blend in. Fox wisdom speaks to finding the ability to become “invisible” or go unnoticed even in a crowd. By learning to do this, you can more easily observe, listening for even the things that go unsaid or unseen. As Ina Woolcott writes, “Fox’s power lies in not being able to outrun the hounds, but to know in advance when they will be out hunting.” This is an important skill to have, especially in a cutthroat workplace or negative home situation, as you need to know when it is time to hide and protect yourself.

The appearance of a Fox in your life may signify is that a solution to a problem is to come. Because Fox represents cunning and strategy, we can imagine silently creeping along the periphery of some situations, looking carefully at how to escape or advance. By becoming quiet, still, and blending in, we have the opportunity to truly listen and see with all our senses before acting. Really pause and a solution may come to you.

Small, but quick, the Fox is not as fearsome a predator as a Wolf or a Bear. It takes courage for it to overcome greater challenges. You, too, can overcome things that seem too large for you.

Finally, in terms of diet, the Fox eats many small meals frequently. This totem appearing in your life could indicate a need to change the way you’re eating (I am not recommending you change your diet in any particular way, and this may be irrelevant to you).

This misunderstood animal offers us a great deal of introspection. If you’ve met a Fox along the way, I’d love to hear about it! 🙂


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