I can't help but think this would be a wonderful book for adoptive families. The story is so sweet and feels like an old fashioned fable.
pictures by Reinhard Michl 1988
An orphaned baby fox is found by another mother fox. She lets him suckle and then carries him to her own den. On the way she's chased by a hound and confronted by a badger. Putting her own life on the line, she defends and protects her new foundling baby. The most poignant part is at the end when another mother fox chides her for adopting something that wasn't her own. When she goes to her den to show off how wonderful the new kit is, she realizes that all her baby foxes smell the same and she no longer knows which one was the foundling. She loves them all equally.
The vixen poked her head out of the den.
"I'm very sorry," she said,
"but I cannot show my founding fox to you.
I really don't know which of my kits
is my foundling fox."
"How dreadful!" cried the neighbor.
The vixen had to laugh.
"It isn't dreadful," she said,
"I love all four of them the same,
and that is that."
And so, the little fox
was no longer a foundling fox.
He was the vixen's kit,
and she was his mother.
She fed him
and gave him milk.
She protected him
and taught him everything
a fox should know.