The Toronto Wildlife Centre is pleading with the public to stay away from the fox family living under the boardwalk at Woodbine Beach after one of the fox babies was found dead.
“One of the babies was found dead last weekend with wounds that were likely inflicted by a dog,” the centre said in a release.
The centre said keeping your distance from the fox family is crucial to their survival.
“Although they’re a wonder to watch, especially to see fox kits playing, keeping your distance from them is crucial.”
Despite barricades being set up, many people have been spotted hand-feeding the foxes and trying to take pictures with them.
“Someone was even witnessed grabbing a baby out of the den to take a photo with the terrified animal,” the centre said, adding that some pet owners let their dogs charge at the foxes.
“These actions put the kits at risk of becoming habituated to humans and stress the fox parents.”
The centre said it is critical for the foxes to learn a healthy fear of people and dogs as they grow into adult wild animals.
“We’re encouraging the community to rally together to help protect the remaining kits (at least five) and their parents. Please keep all dogs supervised and on a leash, and steer your beloved pets clear of the area the foxes reside in.”