I like the simplified foreground, and I think the new pose of the mom makes quite a dramatic difference - much more focused and intense center of interest.
Here's my thoughts. Since sunlight is warm in temperature, the reflected light bouncing back up onto the mother fox's neck and head will also have some of that warmth
in it. I think if you added some warmer temperature color into that bounced light, then there will be a greater feeling of sunlight. The kits, being in the shadow, will be cooler, but they almost look TOO gray to me.. perhaps a cooler version of their light reddish/gold coats - yellow ocher or some alizarin mixed in.
I tried to simulate this in photoshop, but it's like painting in gummy worms (as Stapleton says) so it's pretty crude. the white arrows indicate places where you could have some of the warm light bouncing up, and the blue circles are places where you could have a cooler version of the kit's golden coats, instead of all blue shadows.The right color was hard to find there just drawing it in, more subtle than I could do with the brush tool, but maybe you can get the idea. I also blurred it so that the abrupt color changes of my blobby scribbles were less noticeable.
Well, you asked for thoughts, and that's mine. I hope it is helpful.
It will probably be Monday before I can play with these great tips, along with a few from Debbie Anderson, another great artist friend who saw it in person to critique. Thanks to both of you for taking your valuable time to help me grow! I know these tips will help others, too, so I share them here.