International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

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International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by pawnee » Thu Nov 13, 2008 12:01 pm

International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack
CONTACT: Sharee Johnson Interpretive Center Director -- International Wolf Center, 11/12/2008


ELY, Minn. Lakota, a 15 1/2-year old wolf at the International Wolf Center
was euthanized on Friday, November 7, 2008. A consultation with the Center’s
veterinarian, Dr. Chip Hanson, led to the assessment that her metabolic
system was declining; she had stopped eating and was unable to deal with
ambient conditions. While the anti-inflammatory medication provided some
relief, her condition continued to decline. Wolves in the wild may live 8 to
10 years; captive wolves sometimes live as long as 14 to 16 years.

“We have an ethical responsibility to all of our captive wolves, especially
to those at the end of their lifespan. Staff diligently monitors physical
and behavioral signs to determine if an animal is under stress or suffering
in any way and we implement management decisions in the most humane ways
possible”, commented the Center’s Wolf Curator, Lori Schmidt. While it is
sad to lose such an important part of our wolf care program, it is
comforting to know that Lakota had a great life and was a vital part of our
educational mission.”

Lakota, a great plains subspecies of the gray wolf (Canis lupus nubilus) was
born on April 24, 1993, at Bear Country, USA, near Rapid City, South Dakota.
She was noted for her role as the omega or lowest ranking pack member. She
maintained this pack status throughout her entire life and was often the
instigator of dominance chases. Lakota dispersed into retirement in 2002,
along with her littermates, Mackenzie and Lucas and continued to maintain
the lowest rank of the pack, still the instigator of chases, although a bit
slower as she aged.

Lakota outlived all of her littermates. Lucas died of cancer in July 2006,
and MacKenzie died of a pulmonary embolism in May 2008. During her last six
months of life she had a unique management situation as a lone pack member.
Wolf Care staff developed new management strategies to ensure that Lakota’s
physical and behavioral needs were met.

Access to the wolf lab was the most significant management situation. She
became acclimated to the indoor kennel, which would later prove important
for veterinary care. She became quite fond of taking items from the lab and
running back into the Retired enclosure. Her list of larceny items
included: pillows, backpacks, water bottles, bags of dog toys, sweatshirts,
pizzas, block of cheese, compass, stuffed moose and a bag of grass seed,
just to name a few. Her role as the instigator of chases did not diminish
as the sole pack member; now it was the Wolf Care staff chasing her.

Lakota will be cremated and her ashes will be spread at a location to be
determined by Center staff members.

Donations will be accepted into the Wolf Care Fund in her name and will to
be used for current and future wolf care needs. They may be given
in-person, mailed to 1696 Highway 169, Ely, MN 55731 or entered online at
www.wolf.org .


###
About the International Wolf Center:
The International Wolf Center’s mission is to advance the survival of wolf
populations around the world by teaching about wolves, their relationship to
wildlands, and the human role in their future. The world famous education
center in Ely, Minnesota features daily presentations and field trips, an
award winning museum exhibit and a pack of ambassador wolves living in their
wooded territory. Details online at http://www.wolf.org

http://www.wolf.org/wolves/news/live_ne ... sp?id=3582

RIP Lakota! we`ll miss you!
My Wolf Art http://pawnee.deviantart.com/
Its Not the Size of the dog in the fight, Its the size of the fight in the dog-Mark Twain

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Re: International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by Dewfrost » Thu Nov 13, 2008 12:08 pm

Aw, I heard about this. :(
R.I.P Lakota
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Re: International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by Blindseer » Thu Nov 13, 2008 3:24 pm

there is already a topic for this, though the actual article wasnt posted...
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Re: International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by king1-7 » Thu Nov 13, 2008 4:14 pm

That's okay, this is a good article that wasn't yet online when I made the other thread.

Like I've said, it's really unfortunate that her system started shutting down not long after the renovations on her enclosure were completed...she didn't get to enjoy it very long. At least she had the freedom to enter the wolf lab, though.
Rest in peace, sisters Lakota and Mackenzie

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Re: International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by pawnee » Thu Nov 13, 2008 10:03 pm

sorry blindseer, you can lock this if you want too.
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Re: International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by Wolfwind » Fri Nov 14, 2008 9:33 pm

pawnee wrote:sorry blindseer, you can lock this if you want too.
Thanks for posting the article, though. I didn't know about it until I came across it here.

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Re: International Wolf Center Experiences a Death in the Pack

Post by LupinzPack » Tue Dec 16, 2008 2:45 pm

aw i feel bad
i love wolves so much
i havent heard about this yet
R.I.P Lakota :( :( :( :( :( :( :( :(
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