(ANIMAL RESCUE) CANADA A local Regina couple searched out and rescued four baby foxes after discovering the body of a female fox. Find out what the couple is doing to help these kits, and what to do if you suspect a baby animal has lost his or her mother. — Global Animal

Paul and Sandra Schulte of Regina are caring for four baby foxes, or kits, after their mother was found dead last week. Photo Credit: Troy Fleece, Regina Leader-Post

Regina Leader Post, Will Chabun

REGINA — While the rest of the world has been thinking about elections, strikes, foreign affairs and the like, a little drama has been unfolding in one southeast Regina neighbourhood.

It began about 10 days ago, when the neighbours along a stretch of Selinger Crescent noticed a fox foraging for food at dawn and dusk.

Nothing unusual about that. As resident Sandra Schulte points out, living on the very fringe of the city means you see foxes, rabbits, owls and even the occasional moose.

But on May 3, there appeared on one house’s back deck the lifeless body of that fox, a female. Sandra’s husband, Paul, figures it could have died from birth, but “who knows?”

On the advice of the City of Regina’s pest management office, residents went on the alert, watching for a male adult fox or for their kits — even making checks in the wee hours of the morning.

On Tuesday, it paid off.

Sandra spotted one “little furry thing.” City animal control officer Ryan Johnston arrived and found three under a nearby house’s deck that was too low for a person to crawl under.

Johnston set to work with his gear and cajoled them out over several hours. The fourth was found by a neighbour early Wednesday morning.

So by mid-morning Wednesday, the Schultes’ dogs had been exiled to a locked room and the couple had four foxes in a large cardboard box on their dining room table. Three huddled together in one mass while the fourth mugged for a photographer. “It’s just miraculous that they survived this long,” said Paul.

So now what?

They’re being fed rice pablum, fish protein and water by the Schultes, who are taking pains to touch them as little as possible — and realize they can’t be kept in the city.

Nor, Paul pointed out, can they be left outside, as they’d be quickly picked off by predator.

At the suggestion of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan, he contacted the Wildlife Rehabilitation Society of Saskatchewan — which has a long list of tips on its website (www.wrsos.org) for anybody who finds wild animals and wants to help them.

Chief among them is not doing anything until it can be determined no parent is caring for abandoned animals, then contacting a veterinarian, conservation officer or other specialist for advice.

“Hopefully,” said Paul. “It will be a happy ending for the foxes.”