As a pup, Tod is a sweet, cunning, and lovable young fox who lives a very carefree lifestyle with Widow Tweed. Since there are few restrictions on his life, Tod is prone to being mischievous and getting into trouble. His mischievous side brings out a devil-may-care attitude toward Chief and trouble in general. He is frequently bored and always on the lookout for a friend, which leads him to Copper. As any best friend, Tod treats Copper as his own flesh and blood.
When Tod matures into an adult, he retains his affection for those he cares about most, despite destiny driving a wedge between him and Copper and being returned to the wilderness by Widow Tweed. His extreme loyalty to those he cares for is shown when he helps Copper fight off an enormous bear. He later becomes amorous when he meets and falls in love with Vixey.
Tod is a young fox pup, who is orphaned at the beginning of the film when a hunter kills his mother. Scared and alone, he meets Big Mama, a large owl who takes pity on him and helps the pup to find a new home. With the help of Dinky and Boomer, Big Mama gets the attention of Widow Tweed, and Tod is taken in by the kindly lady. She names the pup Tod, as he reminds her of a toddler.
Tod grows quickly, and becomes quite mischievous, doing such things like aggravating Tweed's cow and spilling her milk. One day he goes out to play and runs into a young hound puppy named Copper, the new dog of the neighboring Amos Slade, who is an avid hunter. The two ignore their status as natural enemies and become fast friends. One day, Copper doesn't come out to play, so Tod sneaks over to Amos's house. He finds that Copper is tied up, as Amos had grown tired of the puppy wandering off. Tod decides to play with Copper there, but Copper warns him of Chief, Amos' other dog, who is a trained hunting dog and would not hesitate to kill Tod. Tod doesn't believe Copper, and accidentally awakens Chief, who alerts Amos. Amos attempts to shoot Tod, believing that the fox was after his chickens. Tod escapes, but Amos' threats against Tod forces Widow Tweed to keep him locked up for his own safety.
One fall day, Amos prepares to take Copper and Chief on a winter-long hunting trip. Tod tries to go say goodbye to Copper, but it is too late. After they leave, Big Mama warns Tod that his friendship with Copper must come to an end. Copper will be a trained hunting dog when he returns and thus will be a danger to Tod. Tod dismisses this, believing that their friendship is stronger.
The next spring, Tod has matured into an adult. When he sees Copper return with Amos and Chief from their hunting trip, he makes plans to go over that night to see him. Big Mama warns him once again that Copper won't return his sentiments, but Tod refuses to believe her. Tod steals over while Amos and Chief are asleep. Copper is pleased to see him and they both remark on how they have grown. Tod tries to renew their friendship, but Copper forlornly refuses and says Tod has to leave. Their conversation accidentally awakens Chief, who alerts Amos. Tod escapes into the forest, with the three of them on his tail.
Tod manages to find a hiding place to dodge Chief but is smelled out by Copper. Conflicted, Copper decides to let him go just once, not wanting to see Tod killed. Tod escapes onto a railroad trestle, but Chief heads him off. As Chief chases him back the other way, a train comes. Tod manages to slip under it, but Chief ends up being hit by the train and is severely injured, though not killed. Copper, believing that Tod intended for Chief to get injured by the locomotive becomes furious and openly swears revenge on Tod. Tod escapes through the forest back to Widow Tweed, who brings him safely home. Later that evening, Amos arrives at Tweed's house in a vengeful fury over Tod nearly killing Chief. Tweed blocks him out, but he insists that she can't hide him forever.
The next day, Widow Tweed, thinking that Tod is no longer safe with her, had no other choice but to release the fox into a game preserve in the forest, as she protects Tod from Amos Slade. Tod has no idea of how to survive in the woods and is soaked in a rainstorm that night. After a run-in with an old, angry badger, a friendly porcupine invites Tod to sleep in his home for the night. The next morning, Tod wakes up after being pricked by the porcupine's quills, falls, and lands right on the badger's den. The badger scolds Tod once again. Tod tries to apologize, but the badger thinks Tod is making up excuses. The porcupine tries to defend Tod, but the Badger shakes him off and orders Tod to go back where he came from. Tod leaves, now more depressed than ever. To help Tod, Big Mama finds a lovely vixen named Vixey to show him around. Tod and Vixey begin to have feelings for each other, but they both get into an argument when Tod humiliates himself as a result of his lack of survival skills, such as attempting to catch a trout, originally on display to impress Vixey. The two quickly make up, and Tod goes to Vixey's burrow with her.
Tod and Vixey have fallen in love and start living together. Unbeknownst to them, Amos has broken into the game preserve with Copper and is bent on hunting the fox. As Tod and Vixey stroll through the forest, they come to a place where Amos has laid some bear traps. Tod comes close to stepping in one, but his instincts kick in and both he and Vixey sprint back toward the burrow with Copper on their heels. In order to buy Vixey more time to head back to the burrow, Tod waited for Copper to come near, then he sprang out, distracting him while snarling at his former friend. After a brief fight, Tod continues to sprint back to the foxhole with Copper pursuing him, rejoining Vixey. With Copper thrashing and clawing his way in through the front and Amos setting fire to the undergrowth in the back, they find themselves cornered. As Amos joins Copper out front to wait for them for the attack, Tod and Vixey decide they must take a chance and narrowly escape the flames out back.
Amos and Copper continue to pursue the two foxes up a cliffside near a waterfall and Tod and Vixey escape before being seen. As Amos aims his gun at the foxes, a huge grizzly bear suddenly looms up before him. The bear advances on Amos, who is walking back and getting his foot trapped in one of his own traps, dropping his gun slightly out of reach. Copper fearlessly lunges at the huge bear to defend his master, but is no match for it as he is soon easily overpowered and overwhelmed in a very vicious fight. Tod hears Copper's yelping echo and turns and is horrified to see his childhood friend getting nearly killed. Against his better judgment, Tod quickly runs back to save his friend. Just as the bear prepares for a final blow on the wounded Copper, Tod leaps on the bear's back and bites him on the ear, making bear to turn his attention to the fox. Biting and scratching wildly, Tod is able to lure the bear away from Copper and Amos. Eventually, he manages to lure the huge bear onto a fallen log over the waterfall. When the bear attacks Tod with his paw, it causes the log to break, sending both of them plummeting several meters down the waterfall.
While the bear presumably dies, Tod barely survives, limping out of the water and collapsing on the bank. Copper approaches him silently, amazed that Tod saved him despite everything that happened, and now feels genuinely remorseful for what he's done to him. When Tod notices Copper, he sadly accepts the fact that he's completely out of fight and at Copper's mercy. Just then Amos arrives with his gun aimed at Tod. Copper stands over Tod, in the way of Amos' shot, looking at him pleadingly. Amos tells Copper to move, but Copper can't let him hurt his friend. Amos eventually relents and leaves for home and Copper follows, the two old friends sharing a last smile before departing.
Tod is seen at the end of the movie sitting on a cliff with Vixey, watching his friend Copper, in the yard, from afar.
The second film takes place prior to Copper going hunting with Amos Slade and during Tod's youth living with Widow Tweed. Tod is still best friends with Copper, but their friendship is tested when Copper joins up with a band of musical stray dogs called The Singin' Strays at the fair.
Feeling abandoned, Tod works with Dixie, whom Copper had replaced, to get Copper to leave the band. Tod lures Copper's owner, Amos Slade, and his other dog, Chief, to the fair and sabotages the band's performance in front of a talent scout. Copper is fired and returns home. However, the band conflicts over Copper's firing and breaks up, leaving Tod regretful.
The next day, Copper and Tod apologize to each other and plan to fix their mistakes. Tod, who had come into possession of the talent scout's hat, gives it to Copper, who tracks the scout. Meanwhile, Tod lures each band member to a local diner. Copper meets them there and convinces the band to reform. The band's subsequent performance interests the Talent Scout brought to the diner by Copper. The band is given the chance to perform at the Grand Ole Opry. Copper, however, chooses to stay home and be friends with Tod.
- Although Tod is usually shown as a pup in merchandise, he actually has more screen time as an adult.
- Tod is one of the few main protagonists whose film is a musical, but does not sing in it at all, following Peter Pan, Robin Hood, Basil of Baker Street, and Oliver.
- Similar to Bambi, although Tod is shown regularly as a pup and adult (adult Tod is known as 'Tod' and young Tod is referred to as Young Tod; also, he has more screen time as an adult in the original movie), his more iconic age is as a pup, and a majority of the film and it's midquel focuses on his youth, during his initial scenes with Copper.
- Tod's "glove" on his right paw is longer than the left one.