fox

Hello from the Foxes

Grainne the Fox

As I was driving through Thomastown last month, I thought I could stop by at Pat Gibbons’ house and get the latest updates. Those who don’t know Pat The Fox Man, can read his story here. This story has been copied and pasted so many times that I gave up being annoyed.

Fortunately, Pat was home, we spent a few minutes visiting and went to the fox pen. It was about 4 pm, one hour before the foxes are let inside for the evening, and I didn’t want to make them upset by dragging them out for a picture. Minnie was already whining, overreacting like the drama queen she is. Nothing is ever right for poor Minnie ūüôā

Minnie the Fox

It took a lot of flattering ( ‘who’s a good girl?’) and a prolonged shoulder massage to get her to lift her ‘ cheerful’ face to me for a picture. Not that I am complaining here. Minnie is all soft and lovely, and it is only a pleasure petting her thick silky fur.

Minnie the Fox

Divas are allowed to have a bad day. When she is ready, you behold a star ūüôā

Pat and his foxes

Two years ago Minnie got pregnant by Henry. Pat was not in condition to care for another fox, and a woman from Kilkenny adopted the kit. I asked Pat how was the little fox doing. Visibly saddened by the question Pat said that the kit has died. He recons it was something about food. Fox is neither a dog nor a cat. Pat gives them chicken legs and beef mince, but they also have ‘extras’ like snails, worms, wild berries.

Pat speaks about commitment and dedication one must have if they plan on keeping a rescued fox. Foxes are creatures of habit and they need their routine. Every day at 5 pm Pat brings them into the house, and it has to be 5pm, sharp.

Recently their friend, the old dog Blackie, was hit by car and died. Pat got a new pup, this time a snow white one, but the foxes don’t mind the color ūüôā The pup is very playful which is just fine with the foxes.

Pat Gibbons

Henry wasn’t in a good mood and run away from us to his enclosure. A couple of month ago he bit Pat’s hand. As Pat explains, he was picking him up and accidentally pressed on his bad paw. It was just a reaction, and Henry himself was probably terrified, as he is so gentle and sweet. Pat got blood poisoning and had to spent 6 days in the hospital. No hard feelings though. Henry got 60 stitches on his head and body when he was mauled by dogs, Pat explains. He must have very sore paw as his leg never straightened out. The dogs badly mauled his jaw and his left eye.

Henry the fox

Beautiful Grainne sits in her favorite corner. Each fox has their favorite place in the pen. She is about 12, and has a lot of silver in her fur, but she is still playful, and performs her usual tricks on demand.

Grainne the Fox

Grainne the Fox

Good girl!

Grainne the Fox

This is an old picture I took of Grainne and Minnie.

Pat and his foxes

Pat often takes them out to Thomastown. Foxes walk on a leash and stop to let people pet them. Meanwhile, Pat shares his thoughts on the wild life preservation. The foxes sometimes get invited to schools. Recently they got a shop opening ceremony invitation.

After leaving the fox pen we talk for another few minutes, and hiding behind the grass, I take some pictures of Pat’s gorgeous chickens.

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The puppy cannot wait for me to start my car – it will be the highlight of his day ūüôā Thankfully, he doesn’t jump on the road.

I hope to see them all in December.

Pat Gibbons

My other blog posts about Pat and his foxes:

https://inesemjphotography.com/2015/08/04/all-creatures/

https://inesemjphotography.com/2014/04/06/kindness/

https://inesemjphotography.com/2017/01/27/pat-and-his-foxes/

 

www.inesemjphotography.com Have a fantastic weekend!

Pat and his foxes

Pat Gibbons

On my way back from an assignment I turned off the main road and drove under the¬†canopy of old trees to the house of my favorite people. I wrote about Pat Gibbons and his family in these blog posts : in 2015¬† and 2014¬†It has been a while since I last visited, and I didn’t call in advance. I saw that the door was half open, and parked at the side of the road. Another car slowly approached, and parked across from me. I didn’t plan to take any pictures and knocked on the door just to say hello, but Pat was about to take the foxes outside for a minute anyway, so I went to pick up my camera. Meanwhile, a¬†family got out of the other car and asked me if it was the Fox Man’s house. The word spreads ūüôā

Pat is always happy when someone shows up to see his foxes. ‘It is why they are here’ he says. He told the visitors about where the foxes come from and about Gr√°inne’s career as a movie star. She is as beautiful as always, just with more silver in her fur.

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Minnie is soft and shy – nothing has changed here ūüôā

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It is the time for hugging.

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Gr√°inne is tired.

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She does a bit of posing for pictures.

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Pat is asking Gráinne to perform her famous trick.

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We walk to the pen to visit with Henry. He is not in the mood to go outside this time.

In a couple of hours they all will go to Pat’s house and enjoy their¬†evening together cuddling and watching the TV.

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I know you all love this post and the foxes ūüôā Thank you for stopping by!

inesemjphotography Have a beautiful weekend!

 

All creatures

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For those who are reading the fox story for the first time Рhere are two links to my previous posts РKindness and Fox News.

This spring,¬†I got a word that Minnie, the six-years old vixen,¬†¬†was pregnant. The only “suspect” was a two-year old male fox Henry,¬†badly mauled¬†by dogs in his yearly days and restored to health in Pat’s care.¬†Being very¬†busy at that time, I didn’t come over to greet the cub¬†and take pictures. I feel sad about that – I don’t think I will have another chance. ¬†Now the cub is gone. Pat has too much on his hands ¬†to accommodate one more fox, and¬†a lady from Kilkenny was happy to¬†give¬†the little foxy¬†a family and a little kit for a sibling to¬†¬†grow together. I only hope for an interview in near future.

I didn’t take pictures of Henry. He was in a¬†bad mood, and we left him in his pen. I only can tell that he looks very grown up, and his injured¬†eye is not as teary as it was last year.

I have got a new “fox picture”, this time with Minnie.

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Grainne and Minnie are full of character, and are visually different.

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Minnie is not angry in these photographs, or upset in any way. ¬†She is just¬†being herself, playing and watching if your attention is still on her ūüôā¬† As you know from my previous post, Minnie doesn’t like walking and prefers¬†being carried and cuddled, and talked to all the time. I think I performed all these tasks very well, and she expected me to carry on,¬†but Patsy thought different and Minnie had to walk to the den on her own feet.

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After the photo session, we all went to the garden. The weather improved, a¬†lovely change. ¬†All the creatures of the house joined us, and I was amazed with their friendliness and good humor: even a huge rooster didn’t mind to¬†be photographed. Cats, chickens, dog¬†Blackie ¬†– ¬†all of them relaxed and at ease with the strangers.

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And of course we talked about foxes, how important they are to the environment. Their diet consists mostly of rats and mice; if they steal a chicken it only means that the chickens were not locked properly. Wild fox killed his ducks yet Pat doesn’t¬†blame the fox¬†but the hole in the fencing. While opposing the fox hunting, Pat doesn’t encourage people to take a fox cub home if it has been found alone. The cub¬†is¬†not abandoned. Foxes¬†belong to the wild and they will survive in the wild. Pat wishes people would just leave them alone.

We were invited for a cup of tea. Pat’s¬†brother showed us a photograph of their parents. Calm, intelligent, beautiful faces. They have raised their eleven children well.

As I¬†have learned, Pat is famous not only¬†because of his foxes. While attending a hurling game, he was spotted and taken a picture of for Kilkenny People newspaper. What has drawn the photographer’s attention? A hat. Pat’s sister is knitting these hats for the¬†match goers, in county colors. Amber and¬†black – Kilkenny colors. I asked Pat if he had another hat for a photograph, and he¬†brought me a Red and White, a Cork one… Didn’t feel comfortable in it… ūüėČ ¬†I should have¬†replaced the colors in Photoshop… ūüėČ

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On our way back home we took a few pictures in Thomastown.

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thomastown

A French tourism-oriented website recently posted a story about Pat and his foxes, and asked if they could use my photographs. I am delighted that more people will learn about this wonderful man and his beloved pets. They are already known in England, Scotland, and New Zealand, thanks to Grainne who is kind of a movie star, since she has several film and tourism commercial credits.

I hope you enjoyed the day with Pat Gibbons, and will visit with him in person on your next trip to Ireland.

Have a great week!