This chapter explores the construction of a metanarrative of Down syndrome: the concept of proximity to animality, or degeneration. It traces the ways in which nineteenth-century medical discourse conflated non-white, non-Western identities, and people with intellectual disabilities, with animals and explores how such a metanarrative is reiterated in Doris Lessing’s The Fifth Child (1988). However, as a counterpoint, the chapter applies Sunaura Taylor’s understanding of ‘claiming animal’ to the representation of Down syndrome and non-human animals in Sarah Kanake’s Sing Fox to Me (2016). This offers imaginative possibilities for interspecies communication and identification, which challenge the speciesism and ableism of the Down syndrome-animality metanarrative.