Learn English – Onomatopoeia for foxes


"What does the fox say?" Onomatopoeia, and Alien Languages claims there's no onomatopoeia for foxes:

But you don't find fox onomatopoeia in this context. Foxes tend to do
one of two things: either they are silent, or they speak like humans
do. It's certainly a testament to the fox's slyness that it's
attributed with human speech, which fits quite well with its trickster
qualities (and of course there are many myths that have the fox
transforming itself into human shape, too).

The article goes on to cite a Wired article claiming that some of the sounds made in the Ylvis song The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?), such as "Chacha-chacha-chacha-chow", are accurate, but it doesn't indicate that they are commonly used onomatopoeia.

Are there any commonly used onomatopoeia for foxes in English?

Best Answer

Short answer: No - hence the joke.

You can make one up that matches the sound they actually make or use the word "Bark"

Longer answer:

Here are more examples of fox sounds from http://greenmeditations.com/getting-foxy


  • Alarm bark
  • Vixen's scream
  • Gekkering
  • Howl

Literature seems to favour bark

I heard the foxes as they ranged over the snow crust, in moonlight nights, in search of a partridge or other game, barking like forest dogs... Thoreau

At night when I slept under an oak tree in the yard, when the white clouds scudded across a blue night sky of spring — it was then I heard the foxes bark on the high mountain top. They barked for me. Jesse Stuart

I heard the foxes howling near the house these two nights back. They always herald a death in our family. Sean O'Callaghan

I heard the fox kit begin to vocalize in a high-pitched, laughing yodel. John Ulanich