Fox Poo in a Field

There is nothing worse than stepping into your lovely garden and stepping in something that should not be there. Oh Poo! There are various animals that may come and visit you during the day or at night and use your lawn or flower beds as a latrine.

The little presents could be left by badgers, rabbits, dogs, hedgehogs and more but 2 of the main culprits are cats and foxes.

Are you waking up to parcels in your garden each morning? Do you have young children and are fed up with having to go outside and ensure that there are no poops to clean up?

We are going to look at how to tell the difference between cat and fox poo so you can ascertain who the mystery pooper is and do something about it.

Cat Poo or Fox Poo?

Although cat poo and fox poo can often be around the same size, there are noticeable differences to help you identify which animal is leaving you special gifts on the lawn.

You can usually tell if it is cat poo or fox poo when you look at the smell, shape, colour, and content.

Cat Poo

Healthy cat poo is small, smooth, and cylindrical with no discernible contents visible and it will be a deep brown colour with a firm consistency like that of modelling clay.

Cat Poo in Litter Tray
Cat Poo in Litter Tray

Fox Poo

Fox poo is small and dark, almost black and will usually have fur, bone, feathers or berries visible. The smell is musky and appears twisted with one end ending at a point.

Fox Poo in Garden
Fox Poo. Pointed at One End and Matted with Fur

Recognising Other Poo in Your Garden

AnimalSizeColourAppearanceConsistencyOdourUndigested Contents?
Cat3 – 10 cmDeep BrownCylindrical, Rounded EndsFirm to SoftMildNo
Fox5 – 20 cmDark Brown, Almost BlackTwisted, Pointy at the EndRough due to ContentsStrong, MuskyBones, Fur, Berries
BadgerVariousVariousPiled in a Small Dug HoleWet/ SloppySweet, MuskyNo
Hedgehog1.5 – 5 cmBlackShiny, Tapered EndSquidgyMildBerries, Insects
Rabbit< 1 cmGreen, BrownSphericalFirmMildGrass

If you have discovered that the problem is cats, read on however if you think you have realised that the problem is foxes pooping in your garden, check out our other article on how to keep foxes away.


Okay, so there are many ways how to tell the difference between cat and fox poo and you should now be able to identify the culprit.

Cat poo will usually be small and have the same consistency throughout, and fox poo will usually be twisted and full of bones, fur, and other items that have not been fully digested.

Garden Doctor Trev

Garden Doctor Tips

“Foxes will poo in some strange places like on stones or logs to mark their territory!”

“Fox poo will usually be twisted and have a point at one end!”

“Cats will bury their poo in loose soil or in mulch. They will not usually go in the open or on concrete unless attempting to dominate another cat’s territory!”

“Make sure you remove the soil around the cat poo as toxoplasmosis can live in cat faeces and soil for up to 18 months!”

Frequently Asked Questions

Do foxes poo in your garden?

Foxes may well use your garden to defecate as they will do this to mark their territory. Foxes may poo on lawns, garden furniture, rocks, logs, and anything else that they have deemed to be theirs.

What does foxes poop look like?

Foxes poop is dog-like and twisted at one end. The poop will also contain fur, bones and other materials that have not been digested.

How do I identify cat poop?

Healthy cat poop is small, cylindrical, and deep brown. It will also be firm to the touch but not solid – a similar consistency to that of modelling clay.  

About Me

Hi, I’m Trev and I’ve been growing things since I can remember. When I was younger, I grew up on a farm, so I have always been around plants and animals. After studying horticulture at university, I decided to start my own nursery which I have run now for 25 years. In my spare time, I run this website – which is a resource for people who want to learn more about their gardens.

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