Furries are people interested in anthropomorphized animals. Unfortunately, some mainstream press accounts portray furries as sexual fetishists united by a common interest in sex in animal costumes. However, survey evidence shows many of these stereotypes are not right. For example, only very few furries think sex in animal costumes is a great idea. The guide below is meant to help clear up some of these misunderstandings:
What is a Furry?
A furry is someone with an interest in animals that have been given human characteristics such as an ability to walk or talk on their hind legs. This includes people who are fans of TV shows and video games that feature anthropomorphic animal characters and people who develop a highly specific furry character they identify with. These people see themselves as not fully human on a mental or spiritual level.
What is a Fursona?
A fursona refers to a furry-themed avatar used by furries to represent themselves as they interact with other fandom members. To craft a fursona, a furry must choose an animal to represent themselves. Typically, fursonas have names and are usually inspirations for fiction or artwork; however, the degree of investment in them can vary. While other furries invest in fursonas as a cutesy avatar to represent themselves to people, others take it more meaningfully.
Being a Furry is Not Just a Sexual Fetish
As with other fan interests like comics and video games, some sexual themes are present. Sexual activity with other furries is part of the subculture for some. In fact, furry dating has been a common thing in the furry community. But, other members of the community keep a non-exotic interest in the subject.
A lot of furries go to conventions to hang out with friends, purchase something like art or badges, watch a show, or go to a discussion panel. Although swinger parties and fetishes are there, that is not what the fandom is about. Almost half of the male furries and a big majority of women reported that sexual content plays little to no role in their introduction to the fandom.
What Furry Fans Do
Furry fan activities are divided into online fandom and furry conventions. In every case, there is a strong analogy to science fiction and comic book. Fan art is a significant part of furry fandom, just as it is for comic book fans. Surveys found out that the majority of furry sites are related to art. Also, some of these sites host furry-related fiction and music as well as offer forums for community-building and fan forums.
Many furries attend conventions either semi-annually or annually. These conventions create an in-real-life space for members who may have met online or offline to hang out. Also, they offer a way to talk to popular artists within the fandom. These conventions are like events such as Comic-Con that let people talk to their favorite movie directors and actors and comic artists. For fans that are much more casual, it may be enough to purchase the books and watch the movies. However, others would love to meet the voice actors of their favorite shows.