Emil the fox killed in Rochester

The Rochester City Council last night was supposed to debate whether a family could keep Emil, the domesticated fox.

The debate is moot. Emil is dead, the Rochester Post Bulletin reports.

Emil escaped his kennel and visited the wrong porch. A neighbor said he thought it was a racoon, feared it had rabies, and shot it with a bow and arrow.

The owner, who moved from Michigan, had an exotic pets license in his previous state but that’s not required in Minnesota. In Rochester, however, foxes, skunks, raccoons, coyotes and wolves are considered “wild animals” and are unlawful to keep within city limits, according to the PB.

“I feel, personally, that the city requirements for pets are totally just. I don’t feel like anybody should just go out to the woods and get a raccoon or a fox or something of that nature and have it as a pet. But (Emil) was purchased from a long lineage of domesticated generations of foxes from Indiana,” a member of the family told the newspaper in a profile last Friday.

The neighbor reportedly “felt bad” about the situation but wanted to have Emil stuffed and mounted. Instead, Emil was returned to the family and a memorial service was held Sunday night.