What is a Furry?

To understand what a furry is the best thing is to read a poem by Corc O'dile from Tigermuck titled simply "Furry". At the bottom I will post more links to resources on what is a furry.

If the true meaning of furry you wish to understand
You must think in terms of paw and not hand
You must release your mentality from society's cage
For furry prefurs no race, sex, persuasion or age

You must sort through the hype and the exploitation
Because to be furry needs no justification
It is to reach out and embrace the unknown
To be surrounded by friends and yet still be alone

It is not a gimmick or a political movement
It's nothing so pretentious as a method of improvement
It's only to seek solace in the presence of friends
For when one is furry, the search never ends

It is sometimes to be controlled by one's emotions
It is to often be unsure of depths of devotion
It is the sweet pain of impossible dreams
It is never quite as close or as far as it seems

It is feelings being known without words being spoken
It is the inevitable occasional heart being broken
It is the type of love that now seems cliche
It's experience gained from having learned the hard way

It's a smurgle, a fuzzle, a rumble or purr
It's scales and whiskers and tails and fur
It's what we are, not outside but within
It's the binding force that makes us all kin

It's a howl in greeting to friends held dear
It's a bristling growl when confronted by fear
It's a friendly lick or scritch to show that we care
It's a deep understanding, a compassion that's rare

If what it is to be furry you still don't comprehend
Then consider this advice, my curious friend
If you're willing to respect that which you don't understand
Then come take my paw and I'll take your hand.

-- Croc O'Dile w/help from Tony DeMatio - 6/95

Anthrocon What is a furry page - http://www.anthrocon.org/about-furry
Wikifur page on what is a Furry - http://en.wikifur.com/wiki/Furry