How to Care for a Pet Wolf

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How to Care for a Pet Wolf. Wolves are intuitive and free-spirited creatures that, though independent and strong-willed, make great pets. The care and feeding of a wolf, however, is different from caring and feeding a domesticated dog. It is important to know a wolf's basic needs in order to properly care for your wolf. Here are some suggestions for caring for a pet wolf.

Give them lots of space. The wolf that is your pet is a wild animal at heart. They are used to being able to roam and run for long distances and have a lot of open, natural space to live in. Planning to have your pet wolf live in a small, fenced-in yard suitable for a regular dog is not fair to them and will not make your wolf happy or fulfilled. Give your wolf a large space of at least an acre or two to call home. If you are not able to accommodate your pet wolf this way then a wolf may not be the right pet for you.

Find a wild animal veterinarian. Wild animal and zoo veterinarians specialize in treating and caring for wild animals and their health. These veterinarians are knowledgeable about the differences between caring for exotic pets and domesticated ones and can address any concerns you have.

Feed your wolf a proper diet. A wolf is not the same as a domesticated dog, so feeding it dog food from the grocery store will not be sufficient for maintaining proper nutrition. As with dogs, table scraps or "people food" are a bad idea to give wolves, but supplementing their diet with fresh raw meat is good. Raw meat not only gives them iron and other vital nutrients but also helps your wolf feel like they have acquired a fresh kill for themselves. Talk to your veterinarian about other dietary needs and supplements that can help keep your wolf healthy.

Understand behavioral patterns. Wolves are independent creatures, and it is important to understand the differences between the behavior of a wolf and that of a dog. Wolves are family-oriented pack animals but are not necessarily as cuddly or friendly as a dog; they need time and space to themselves. If your wolf acts stand-offish or spends time on its own, don't interpret this as a sign that your wolf is ill or doesn't like you. This is simply its natural behavior and must be respected.

Remember that the wolf is still a wild animal. Not everyone will appreciate living next door to a wolf, and you may not be prepared to handle all of the challenges presented to you in owning a wolf as a pet. Keep in mind a pet wolf is still a wolf, not a dog, but with love and respect it can be a fun and loving pet and companion.

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