Foxes are members of the genus Vulpes within the family Canidae. Although a few other Canid genera may be called "foxes", this is the genus of "true" foxes. The most well known and prolific species is the red fox Vulpes vulpes, a native of Europe and Asia which has been imported to all continents on Earth except for Antarctica. Foxes have long had a double-edged relationship with humans, being regarded as livestock-raiding pests and a target of hunting for this reason, as well as for fur clothing and sporting trophies, but praised in folkloric literature for their cunning in the face of danger.
Foxes were imported to Atlantis from Europe during colonial times, for the purpose of sport hunting. By the 19th century, this invasive species, among others, had wreaked havoc on the native wildlife such as the oil thrush.
While Gerin the Fox and Van of the Strong Arm were traveling to Ikos to seek word of Gerin's missing son, Van saw a fox of the ordinary canid variety, and offered to shoot it for supper. Gerin ordered him not to do this. Fox was his ekename, and the gods placed strong curses on people who killed their naming animals. When Van pointed out that Van, not Gerin, would kill the beast, Gerin explained that the gods would hold him culpable as accessory. Van found a squirrel for their supper instead.
Following the Big Fracas, genetic engineering became a popular way to curb the undesirable traits of humans. New innovations led to an interest in modifying other species under the same theory. Dmitry Belyaev's 20th-century experiments with foxes were remembered, resulting in the new trend of keeping vulpines as pets. Joe and Daisy Mae were examples of this.
Foxes were among of the few animals living atop the Glacier, and were preyed on by humans there. When Marcovefa came down into the world below and saw dire wolves for the first time, she thought of them as big foxes, that being her only frame of reference.