Monday, August 9, 2010

Answerbox: What's the Deal With Furries?

Dear Answerbox:

What is the name of the fetish where people dress up in mascot/animal costumes? That one fascinates me... how is that sexy? How does it work?

Never Looked At My Teddy That Way Before

It'll never be the same again

There's two very specific ways to be a furry - the sexy way and the non-sexy way.  Most Furries are the non-sexy kind, participating in what many call "Fur Fandom."  I'm not saying these folks can't be sexy, just that they don't dress up as animals for the purpose of sexual satisfaction. 

This has nothing to do with sex

Fur Fandom is a type of cosplay, or costume roleplay, and is commonly seen at anime conventions and the like.  It's just a fun way for people to express themselves - like folks at renaissance faires or Star Trek conventions. By the way, if you've never been to any of these kind of events, you should totally go to at least once.  People are SO happy there, and super welcoming and accepting - it warms the heart for days, I'm telling you.  You also might meet LeVar Burton, which would be so great you'd explode.

Name anything sweeter than LeVar's smile and I'll call you a LIAR

Then, there are the sexy-kind Furries, the fur fetishists or "Furverts" (I haven't been able to determine if "Furvert is considered offensive to the fur fetish community - if it is, please let me know and I'll edit!!).  These folks get dressed up, either in partial costume or full fursuits, and they do it specifically because they find it sexually arousing.  There are also folks called "Plushies", which bring stuffed animals into the mix.

There are two ways that I've been able to find that Furries get sexy with each other: scritching and yiffing.  Scritching is scratching or rubbing someone else's fur, often done between the ears or on the back of the neck.  Yiffing is furry sex, and appears to involve rubbing ones (fur covered) genitals against someone else's fur.

always being careful of friction burns, of course

As for why its sexy, first let me say that I'm making suppositions here - I haven't found any Furries to talk to about their reasons for starting out with this particular lifestyle.  However, they seem to make sense to me, so here goes.  I think it partly has to do with becoming someone else, of escaping into complete fantasy.  A person's identity is completely obscured in a fursuit, something which can make surrendering to the fantasy that much easier.

I also think that people find comfort in the child-like quality of furrydom.  That is NOT to suggest that Furries are interested in having sex with children, but rather that the softness and cartoonish quality of the costumes evokes the kind of care-free joy and lack of shame that children feel.  There's also a school of thought that suggests that early masturbatory experiences with stuffed animals can lead to Fur Fetishism, but I haven't seen anything that convinces me of that with any real authority.

and you thought they were sooooo innocent
The Truth is, though, I bet that every Furry and Plushie out there has his or her own reasons for getting off the way they do.  The community is extremely inclusive - there are Furries of every sex, age, walk of life and sexual orientation, and it's only getting bigger.  Are you interested in learning more?  Here is a link to WikiFur (for and by Furries) and an online forum called Furry Sanctuary.

If you are a self-identified Furry and would be game to give me a little more insight into this world, I would LOVE to talk to you.  Give me a shout, iffin' yer willin'!

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