The Wolves

Meet our newest rescues and discover their story

Our newest family members have arrived all the way from South Africa, having come to us in a joint rescue effort with the Garden Route Wolf Sanctuary. We are beyond excited to have been entrusted with these stunning and charismatic animals for the first time ever in Zimbabwe.

WHERE ARE THEY FROM

 

Wolves originate from Europe and America, although since those early days, many have been moved to non-indigenous areas, some areas of Africa being one of them. This was generally done before legislation around the movement of animals became as strict and controlled as it is today.  As a result, wolves can be found in rescues, private ownership and zoos around the world. These puppies are from South Africa where wolves are kept both legally and illegally. After a case of neglect, both of the puppy’s parents were surrendered to a registered rescue center, the Garden Route Wolf Sanctuary.

 

The puppies were born shortly after their mother arrived at the sanctuary. At 16 years old, it was not expected that she could reproduce, and no one knew the mother was pregnant until the puppies were born. She hid her pregnancy well, and even the birth. At around a week old, the pups popped their heads out of a deep den the mother had created underneath a platform in the enclosure.

WHY THEY LEFT THE SANCTUARY

The sanctuary does not condone breeding of wolves at all, since there are no new bloodlines to diversity the current gene pool in South Africa, and because wolves sold to private homes regularly end up back in rescues. They are challenging animals to live alongside, and do not make suitable house pets. Because of this the sanctuary does not have suitable facilities or enclosures for young puppies. Furthermore, to keep them with their mother would have endangered their lives, as the original pack were still adjusting to the parents and would likely have killed their puppies.

WHERE DO WE COME IN

Our veterinary and animal rescue team has close ties to the sanctuary, and they approached us to see if we would be interested in giving a forever home to the litter. They wanted to find a sanctuary where the puppies could grow and thrive, with no chance of being sold to the public or bred irresponsibly.

We were beyond excited and honoured to be given this opportunity and accepted it without hesitation. With the combined knowledge of our animal care team and ongoing support from the rescue centre in South Africa, the wolves have settled in excellently. We are also being assisted by a number of zoo’s and sanctuaries around the world to give this little pack the best care, enrichment, diet and environment possible.

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THE FUTURE OF THE PACK

The wolves have a forever home in our sanctuary. They will grow up and grow old here, in the safety of our care.

During the day the puppies are down at the kiosk. Here they are fed their breakfast and dinner and receive behavioural enrichment like chews, toys and Kongs. The puppies are open for public viewing and also carry out a limited number of interactions each day. They are well socialised, trusting and familiar with humans. Hanging out with the pack is a highlight for our guests.

As they grow older and stronger, they will move in to a larger enclosure at the kiosk and eventually live in a large drive-round enclosure, giving them space to partol, climb, play and express natural behaviours. If our pack females pass various genetic tests and medical assessments, we hope to be invited to participate in genetic diversity breeding. This will involve import of semen from wolves currently in Sanctuaries in Europe and America.

Why not come and visit our pack, at the Lion and Cheetah Park.

Meet the pack

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Volcan

Date of Birth: 15/5/2020

Name meaning: Greek God of fire

The largest of the litter, Volcan is the Alpha male and leads the tiny pack. He is always the first to head in to a new and strange situation and is brave and bold. His favourite thing (this goes for all the puppies!) is eating meat or chewing on a bone.

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Silva

Date of Birth: 15/5/2020

Name meaning: Latin for “woodland”

Silva can be recognised by her darker face and nose, with very little white hair. She is a very friendly girl who generally always greets people with a wagging tail and a big grin. She loves lying on her back and having her tummy rubbed. She will fall asleep like that for hours.

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Dia

Date of Birth: 15/5/2020

Name meaning: Latin for “travel”

Dia is a confident and fun loving wolf who is always playing with her litter mates and who is also one of the first to initiate movement of the pack or the start of an adventure. She is easily recognised by her fur, which is darker and fluffier than her littermates.

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Aura

Date of Birth: 15/5/2020

Name meaning: Latin for “Air”

Aura is a sweet girl, who is slightly more timid than the other females in the litter. She is also one of the smallest. She can entertain herself for hours playing with toys and digging little holes that she will then curl up and sleep in.

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Luna

Date of Birth: 15/5/2020

Name meaning: Latin for “Moon”

Luna is the largest girl of the litter and is always off investigating. She can be very social, but some days is a bit of a diva and wants to be left alone, and will distance herself from the pack.  She canhas the most white on her face, in a love heart shape.

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Cupid

Date of Birth: 15/5/2020

Name meaning: Greek God of Love

Cupid is the runt of the litter. He is the smallest. He can be shy, but also is very happy being close to people he knows and likes. He is very drawn to young children and will often sit on their laps for as long as he is allowed, enjoying fuss and strokes.