1.2 Ethnicity

Across samples, the majority of furries have been consistently been found to self-identify as White, with approximately 15-20% of furries identifying as a member of an ethnic minority.1 One caveat should be noted, however: the majority of these studies were conducted at North American conventions or, when online, were conducted in English, which may account, at least in part, for these results. A more recent international survey 2 included a significant sample portion from China and Southeast Asia, with a notable increase in participants identifying as East Asia or Indiginous/Native.

Ethnicity of Furry Participants

Race/Ethnicity (2011 Sample) % of Sample Race/Ethnicity (2020 Sample) % of Sample
White 83.2 White 78.6
Black 2.1 Black 1.6
Asian 2.0 Indigenous/Native 1.6
First Nations/Native American 0.6 East Asian 15.3
Hispanic 3.0 Hispanic 3.2
Middle Eastern 0.1 Middle East 0.7
East Indian 3.1 Central Asia/India 0.7
Other 9.0    

When compared to other fan groups, furries, as a group, were the most predominantly White (see figures below; color differences indicate significant statistical differences between groups.)3 The reasons for this are unknown, though it may be the case that the historical origins of the furry fandom (grounded in the science-fiction fandom which has also been traditionally White) may partially explain these findings. In comparison, convention-going anime fans had a significant Hispanic population, likely owing to the convention’s location in Dallas, Texas, a region with a large Hispanic population relative to other parts of the country. This is supported by the relatively smaller proportion of Hispanic participants in the online anime sample, which represents online participants from far more diverse regions. Interestingly, the online anime sample had significantly more Asian participants, something one would expect in a fandom centered on Japanese animation, although there were unexpectedly few Asian participants at the anime convention.

Percent of furry fandom identifying as "White"
Percent of furry fandom identifying as "Asian"
Percent of furry fandom identifying as "Hispanic"
Percent of furry fandom identifying as "Black"

References

  1. International Furry Survey: Summer 2011
  2. Appendix 1 Previous Research-Summer2020 Survey
  3. 2014 3-Fandom Survey (Furries, Anime Fans, Fantasy Sport Fans)

10 Comments

  1. Charleston

    Pardon me, but I’m a little confused. When I add up the percentages for ethnicities at the top, I get 103.1%. Might I ask where this extra 3.1% has come from?

    Reply
    • Courtney "Nuka" Plante

      Great question! The percentages add up to more than 100% because people were allowed to check off more than one box on the question (specifically, we told them to “check all that apply”). So it would be entirely possible, for example, for a person to check “White” and “Hispanic”, or “Asian” and “Other”. As a result, the numbers get a little funky if you try to add them up to get a total percentage, because participants can fall into multiple categories.

      Reply
  2. strawberry muffins

    Given the high level of LGBTQ+ participation and connections in the Furry Fandom; the lack of non-white, African Americans/LatinX (Asain?) Could stem from the sometimes extremely anti-LGBTQ+ attitudes in certain communities. I know of a African Americans that while having no issues with LGBTQ+ people would never publicly express that support because they would face severe consequences from their communities. This should be an area of further study.

    Reply
  3. Ace

    I’m probably the only black furry here lol

    Reply
    • Cheese lover

      You’re not alone lol

      Reply
    • Talia

      I’m a black furry too!

      Reply
  4. The Catt Prince of Felines

    ‘Ello! Here is another Black furry from the furry community. :3

    Though I agree that many people of color (at least in the states) would more than likely never publicly express the support of furries due to facing severe consequences from their communities (among other fandom communities that are out there). I happen to be one of the very small few who will openly show my support as well as identify as a furry, despite ironically being the shy type. Though to be fair, only those who personally knows me are aware that I identify as a furry of felines. I should add that I tend to usually reside in a part of my city where people are more open to do things that they may not do in the hood. I’ve seen people of color identify as subcultures that I would of never seen in the hood, but wasn’t surprised because I use the internet and I’m aware of what and who’s out there. I am from the hood but I don’t reside there. ;3

    Reply
  5. anon

    What was the total amount of submissions? I’m trying to get a total number of furries in the world/country that the poll took place in

    Reply
    • Admin

      Participants vary from sample to sample, based on methodology used (online v in-person v hybrid), and the year in which the studies took place. Over the years we’ve attended some of the biggest cons and some of the smaller ones across the globe. In the write-ups for the studies you’re referencing, there are footnotes which lead to a new page that details the sample size and the methodology used, which should answer your question. As for total number of Furries worldwide/country, that’s a much harder question to answer, and we don’t know with any great precision, but we estimate somewhere between 250K to upwards of a million across the world, but admittedly, that’s a guess. We also estimate that most furries are in the United States, but our samples are mostly from the US as well, so that affects and may bias our estimation.

      P.S. There was a broken link in footnote 2, but that has been corrected, and now properly links to Appendix 1: Previous Studies and Results: Summer 2020 Survey which will also help to further answer your sample size question 🙂

      Reply

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