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Foxes were common characters in traditional Japanese folk-tales. Sometimes they were portrayed as divine beings of boundless knowledge, while other times they played the role of the shape-shifting trickster. Today the kitsune is a popular featured animal in anime and kemonomimi, or “humans with animal ears”, are more popular than ever. The longstanding popularity of this animal means there are many fox girl characters featured in different series.
Some kitsune gals demonstrated many of the associations created by tales of old though some are a breed apart, deviating from these stereotypes altogether. Legends aside it is hard to deny the unique charm that fox girls hold. There’s just something about these feisty foxes - they make for quite memorable characters, though some of them are more captivating than others. With that in mind, let’s move on and take a look at our list of the foxiest kitsune gals in anime!
10. Yukikaze Panettone from Dog Days
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: April 2011 - June 2011
Yukikaze serves loyally as a member of the Biscotti Knights secret squad, a sect of the military in the Biscotti Republic. Though many of the other citizens of her country have canine ears and tails, Yukikaze is a rather foxy exception to that rule. Though she stands out a bit, she treats the other members of the squad like her own family.
In realizing, Yukikaze’s parents are earth deities, giving her characteristics that set her aside from the pack, so to speak. In addition to being a kitsunemimi, she is also a bit strange in her occasional use of archaic language when she speaks. In battle, she is very fox-like - agile and fast, and extremely adaptable due in part to her proficiency with a variety of weapons.
9. Hoozuki and Bonbori from Otome Youkai Zakuro (Zakuro)
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: October 2010 - December 2010
Hoozuki and Bonbori are both foxily playful, cheerful, and hard to tell apart from one another, sometimes to their annoyance. The only one who seems to be able to differentiate between them is Hanakari, the person they have been assigned to work with to help bring peace between spirits and humans. They both enjoy teasing Hanakari but harbor a deep affinity for him.
Two are better than one, and foxes are no exception. Hoozuki and Bonbori are kitsune twins who work for the Ministry of Spirit Affairs, but so do many other fox girls in the show. In fact, there are many kitsune side characters in the series, so many it was difficult to choose who to mention in this article! In any case,if you’re a fan of foxy gals, this show is one you won’t want to miss!
8. Tamamo from Ghost Sweeper GS Mikami (Ghost Sweeper Mikami)
- Episodes: 45
- Aired: April 1993 - March 1994
Ghost Sweeper Mikami takes place in a world where human development has destroyed the homes of spirits, driving them out and causing mayhem. The only hope and order for this world seem to come in the form of exorcists. The series centers around an Exorcist duo for hire, and the mysteries and supernatural creatures they encounter together. Tamamo the kitsune is one such creature.
The two protagonist encounter a fox-girl named Tamamo. In her human form, the only indicator of Tamamo’s true power is her hair, which resembles the nine tails she possesses in her true form. In truth Tamamo is known as a Kyuubi no kitsune - or nine-tailed fox endowed with magical powers, featured in countless Japanese folktales.
7. Hagoromo Gitsune from Nurarihyon no Mago (Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan)
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: July 2010 - December 2010
A very long time ago, Hagoromo was a master of spirits. Now the kitsune spirit has been reduced to a being that must choose and possess human bodies - and if her host is defeated, she is defeated as well. Luckily, she can transfer between vessels at will, which allows her to conceal her true form as long as she is not truly bound to the human. In the series the demon possesses the body of a pretty young girl named Yamabuki Otome.
The ancient yokai is extremely self-absorbed, narcissistic, believing not only that she is better than others but that she is entitled to respect, power, and control. Foxes can be devoted parents, and despite her evil nature, Hagoromo is not an exception in the way she behaves as a mother. Though not a kitsunemimi, Hagoromo is an unforgettable kitsune demon villain.
6. Dakki from Senkaiden Houshin Engi (Soul Hunter)
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: July 1999 - December 1999
In a universe based on Chinese mythology, Dakki acts as the main villain. She is portrayed as an evil kitsune temptress using the emperor like a puppet while she calls the shots from behind the scenes, manipulating him to see her sinister goals of total control to fruition. She is as powerful as she is beautiful, and uses every means possible to her advantage.
Foxes aren’t always benevolent in anime. Dakki is a cruel foe, and a bit sadistic, taking great pleasure in the suffering of others. She is not only a demon, but an ancient one, and time has made her a very competent and formidable foe. Interestingly, she can choose to take the bodies of female humans to occupy, rather than displaying her true, powerful kitsune form.
5. Yoko from Inukami!
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: April 2006 - September 2006
In this series, the protagonist is a demon tamer - or he would be, but he has failed thus far to tame his own demon or inukami and is considered a disappointment by his family. He encounters Yoko, and she seems like an easy target to tame, one he can use to reclaim his honor. However, he could not be more wrong. After all. Yoko isn’t an inukami - she’s a kitsune.
Rather than being obedient like a dog, Yoko behaves like a fox. She is disobedient, and a trickster who revels in pranks. Yoko carries with her classic kitsune powers - the ability to manipulate fire magic, and the power to teleport. She can sometimes be see sporting a classic fox tail. She expresses an intense fear of canid creatures and an unusual obsession with chocolate cake.
4. Chizuru Minamoto from Kanokon (Kanokon: The Girl Who Cried Fox)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: April 2008 - June 2008
To everyone who meets her, Chizuru Minamoto appears as an average teenager, albeit a particularly pretty one. She hides a secret that the protagonist of the series uncovers, as he seems to have a knack for attracting animal spirits. Chizuru is, in fact, a kitsune, who can shapeshift. In her true form, her hair turns from dark to blonde, and she sports fox ears and a tail.
Chizuru is a powerful spirit, wielding the power of flame in addition to her ability to change form. She is extremely forward with her sexuality, particularly in regards to her advances on the series protagonist, and is jealous and possessive of other girls. Having regular girls chase after you is one thing, but have an ancient kitsune infatuated with you is a whole different breed of problems!
3. Sakura Bokuseiinmonzeninari from Hyper Police
- Episodes: 25
- Aired: April 1997 - September 1997
Sakura appears to be a young attractive female encountered by the series’ protagonist when in fact she is an ancient fox spirit with ulterior motives. Due to her partial human ancestry, instead of the typical nine tails, a kitsune is born with, she only has 8 ½, stunting her power. The only way she can reach her full potential is to consume enough power and grow stronger.
While initially she tries to devour the energy of the protagonist to achieve this goal, she is later so inspired by her she joins the police force, even being partnered with her for a time. She uses her abilities to fly and control electricity in combination with deadly firearm accuracy to overcome her foes. Like Dog Days and Otome no Yokai zero, there are many other characters that are kemonomimi so if you’re a fan, this show may also be a good fit for you.
2. Kuugen Tenko [Female Form] from Wagaya no Oinari-sama. (Our Home's Fox Deity)
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: April 2008 - September 2008
For as long as they can remember, those in the Mizuchi family have been hunted by demons. Toru and Noboru Takagami are two siblings who happen to be the youngest members of the cursed bloodline. However, in their mortal plight against demons, the two have one hope: their curious and resourceful family guardian Kuugen Tenko.
Kuugen Tenko is a guardian fox deity who is so ancient that they are unable to remember their true gender, so like many kitsune they shift shape; specifically alternating between male and female forms. The foxy trickster was trapped by the family long ago, and once freed, took a liking to them and decided to act as a protector. This gender-bending kitsune uses magic and spells against demons to protect the two siblings.
1. Zakuro from Otome no Youkai Zakuro (Zakuro)
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: October 2010 - December 2010
Zakuro is a half-breed demon and the female protagonist of the series. She works on behalf of the Ministry of spirit affairs - an organization that seeks to help ease the growing conflict between humans and spirits. However, she generally dislikes humans, particularly the ones that embrace the western culture, or are disrespectful of spirits. Zakuro carries the spirit of the fox within her, which is likely responsible for her vulpine ears.
Zakuro is an old school kitsune girl in more ways than one. Not only does she stay true to the form of fox spirits of Japanese legends - but she has a disdain for breach of tradition. Like many kitsune, Zakuro possesses magical abilities. Her fox-like agility also makes her proficient in combat, where she wields a dagger with great skill. Her strong-willed nature and charm make her a memorable kitsunemimi character to be sure, landing her a spot on this list.
Fox girls have qualities that set them apart. Most kitsune girls are formidable foes in combat, using both magic and accuracy to their advantage. They tend to have an association with tradition, and may even be ancient themselves, even if they don’t always act like it. The also often use their wits and wiles to obtain power, fortune or achieve their own personal goals. Female fox characters have a distinctive charm to them, and we hope you’ve enjoyed our list! Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.