A day in the life of a furry

The other side of the fandom

When waking up in the morning, immediately reaching for your phone warrants checking up on friends and family on social media. For this furry, it’s reading through Telegram messages and checking up on other furries on social media. While “Lae” maintains both personal and furry identity online, he enjoys spending time online with his “wolf” alias with other furries. “At times, they just care more about the little things than my [non-furry] friends do. It’s a community filled with acceptance (in my experience) towards a variety of things.”

As the semester is well underway, Lae prepares for a long morning at the library. Working towards a master’s degree, he dedicates a majority of his time studying and finishing up assignments.

During his breaks, Lae turns back to his phone. Today, an artist Lae commissioned on Twitter sent him a finished YCH (Your Character Here). “There’s two types of people: people who like random cute pictures of animals and liars,” he said with a grin. In the furry fandom, YCHs are an opportunity to let fans interact indirectly with other furries. Pieces like this are usually commissioned and can range in value from tens of dollars to hundreds of dollars at times. “The higher in price they are, the more likely ait’s from an auctioned piece from a popular artist – especially if the artist rarely opens for commissions.” The highest Lae has witnessed someone pay for a YCH is $1,500.

The YCH this wolf received

Online interaction in the community can foster great relationships. Lae was just returning to school from a job he got by networking with another furry. Due to the online popularity of the furry fandom, there tends to be many furries who are involved in technical fields such as computer hardware/software engineering, electrical engineering, and information technology. “In order to afford an average suit, you have to have a decent flow of income. However, people are still very involved in the fandom even without having a fursuit.” After a furry inquired about Lae’s suit on furry social media, the conversation eventually led to a job offer. “It’s important to establish yourself professionally and connect with experts in your field, but never underestimate the power of people who have similar interests outside of your field of study have on future employment opportunities.”

At around 5pm, Lae was ready to leave the library. He was invited to go to party where other furries would be. To prepare for this get together, Lae had to get himself and his fursuit ready. Prepping for the party meant fixing up his suit by brushing it and packing it in a special container.

Lae brushes his fur-suit

The group had come together to celebrate the visit of two furry friends from outside the state. With plenty of drinks and board games, the party was well on its way. Suits were placed in a separate room until everyone was ready to put them on. Once on, the group resumed their normal activities.

Local meet-ups allow furries to network with or without the suit. Jason met his friends through a meetup on campus and by visiting different conventions. The party, which took place on campus, was small scale and chill. “Picture all the regular college festivities, but with suits.” said Jason.

The group had come together to celebrate the visit of two furries from outside the state. With plenty of drinks and board games, the party was well on its way. Fursuit containers are usually stored in another room which is used as a “dressing room”.

Local meetups allow furries to network with or without a fursuit. Lae met his friends through meetups on campus and by visiting different conventions. The party on campus was small and chill. “Picture all the regular college festivities at a normal party, but with everyone wearing fursuits.” said Lae. The party ended around 2am Before leaving, the guests took their suits off to pack up.

Whenever anyone asks what a furry is, a popular response is “those weird animal people” or better yet, “I’ve never heard of them”. Yet, for those in the community, it’s an opportunity to be oneself. The furry fandom fosters an environment which gives rise to common interests to people all across the world; it allows those who may not be confident in themselves to express their true feelings and connect with those who are like-minded. While stereotypes exists, there is still a greater element to the community that only those who are in it understand.

For Lae, when putting on the suit, he is able to be something different – at least for a little while. “Expressing my involvement in the fandom has reaffirmed all of my friends (furry or not) that I associate with; if people focus negatively on the fact I like dressing up as a wolf for fun rather than the content of my character, why should I focus on them?”

Rochester Institute of Technology