A Christmas Story: A Wolf Who Was Saved.

 

It was summertime when this story first began. There was a 4th of July event and someone's poor wolf dog was frightened by the loud noises of the fireworks. So in fear and panic he ran away.
 
Everett, who mostly works swings, went out on a call just after the 4th of July.  I believe the pooch was found under a bush on someone's property.  He loaded him into the truck and when he was unloading at the shelter he realized he wasn't just a husky.  After 5 days of being on stray and no owner to show for him, we started taking him out of his kennel after hours.  Everett bonded quickly and named him Lobo.  When Everett would come in to start his shift, Lobo would start howling for him.  We would just yell at him that his boy was waiting for him.
He was a gentle soul and as days went by he started to play.  We would chase him, he would chase us.  It was so cute.  He would make a special sound when he would play with Everett.
I brought my son in to meet him in August.  It was love at first sight!

 

 No one came looking for their beloved wolf dog at the local animal shelter. He was not microchipped and had no collar or tags on him. He was neutered, so someone somewhere had some sense at least. As the summer rolled on his fate looked darker and bleaker, yet everyone at the shelter found him to be such an exceptional animal that they decided to make sure he was placed in a loving permanent environment where he would be happy in his forever home.

 
There was question whether he was a hybrid and we decided he needed to be placed
through a rescue.  That is when I searched the net and found Danya! 
Lobo stayed a while longer, we were so in love with him.  He never showed any aggression, but was terrified when he heard fireworks.  This is the one time we watched him try to go over the 6 foot yard.  The next week we put him in a large 5 foot yard and left him alone.  He jumped the fence and walked into another 6 foot yard where he proceeded to eat an entire bucket of dried liver treats.  We figured his tummy would be upset that night.
 
My son spent more time with him.

 

As luck would have it Where Wolves rescue had a home just waiting for him. There was another female wolf dog there, some goats and 2 cats. He was good with all the other animals. So His caretakers from the shelter drove him to his new home in Camp Verde, AZ. 

After talking to Mary and Danya, I decided that living with her would be his best option.  Unsure of the heat, as the boy spent most of his day sleeping and then was ready to roll at 4pm.  He was a night owl.  We even left his kennel door opened at night, so he could enjoy the night air.
 
With permission from the shelter, we gave him his shots and a microchip and Everett pulled out a mattress and anything else he could think of to make Lobo's trip to AZ more comfortable.
 
On Sept 2, my son and I left at 5:15am to pick up Lobo and drive him up to Camp Verde.
 

 

It was a long drive.  Lobo stayed right up between us the whole time.  He was nervous and the drool was non-stop.
We told him to play it cool and not draw any attention to himself.
 
We then reach Danya's and she was lovely and took the time to show both my son and I around.. Lobo waited while we each took the tour.

 

I knew his journey was coming to an end for me and was already heart sick.
 

 

We then arrive at Mary's house.  Lobo was so good!  He was polite and calm, while walking around her home and the back yard.
So as Lobo seemed to settle right in, just like he belonged, we said our good byes.
Of course, I was a cry baby.  I loved this boy and would of done anything for him.  My son
was so in love with the boy, that he made the trip with me!

 

We left her that night about 7pm, I believe.  Fred, who is a sergeant at our shelter, even called me to see if we made it safely.  Everyone at our shelter felt for this boy.  I feel sorry for the person that lost him before we found him.  He was well taken care ofwith no doubt.

Wulfy II was not happy though with his new found family, or perhaps the thunderstorms reminded him of that 4th of July all over again, or perhaps hunting season came around, but late at night one night, on the 8th of September, he broke out of the house, scaled the reinforced fence and once again ran away. 

Elfie came and told her mommy , "come get him, he needs you" but sometimes humans think they know more than dogs do. And Elfie was told "leave him alone, it is his sleep time". Mommy now pays attention when Elfie tells her something is going on! 

Mommy contacted all the local shelters and had all the local groups made aware of him. Signs were posted, his microchip was registered, but he was wearing no collar except a large old working choke chain. Large enough to fall off easily, but also large enough to get dangerously wrapped around him.

Anyone could mistake him for a feral dog, or think he was abused and just keep him, his microchip may never be discovered even. To say nothing of the fact that he was a city wolf and knew nothing of the ways of the coyotes. Or of the hunters during hunting season, or of the people who just shoot stray dogs. Things once again looked dim for this aging wolf dog. 

Now we sent emails to each other, and talked about his fate, we discussed all the options, good and bad, and wondered how long it would be before we would hear of him again and if it would be good or bad. 

I went ahead and drummed and danced and asked for the spirit guides of his ancestors to help see him through, to get him to someone he trusted. One day after dancing and drumming around the well, "Nigi Mini Wiconi", or "Life Giving Spirit".  As I arrived at the front door, a message lay there, written on a box lid was the name of the item in the box. The name of the item was called : 

"SUMMONED SPIRITS" 

 

When I was done I felt better, and there was a message at my front door on the porch , It said "Spirits Summoned" I don't know what to make of it.

Now that is a total trip!  I am still thinking good thoughts.  I figure we found him the 4th of July, so some other person will probably find him too.  I just hope I don't have to wait till New Years!
Stacy

 

Of course I emailed Mommy and the folks at the shelter about my experience. And hope loomed ahead for many weeks. But still nothing. Some reports of possible sightings but nothing concrete, no Wulfy anywhere. 

Mommy offered a new home to 2 homeless dogs that really needed something special in their lives. Mommy is that someone, and although the cats still aren't pleased they will get over it. 

 

Meanwhile Wulfy still wandered the dark corners and was always on the edge of my thoughts never far away. My pride was slightly offended, Where Wolves Rescue DOESN'T loose dogs! But more than that was the constant worry of what had happened to him and where he was. I constantly asked the spirits of his ancestors to guide him home. I constantly feared he had already  passed on. I constantly worried he was not safe, or in fear or pain. I anguished over his fate.  (See a theme here folks?) 

Last week I got a call from a fellow rescue worker in Sedona. She claimed there was a wolf dog at the shelter and they needed to find a rescue for it.  One of the other ladies emailed me she was too tired and depressed to help, she had to put her family's wolf dog down that day. HOWLS FROM THE PACK! 

So I contacted the Shelter personnel in charge. I was just expecting to be asked to take in a stray wolf dog or even an owner turn in, you never know. As I spoke with him, it occurred to me I should ask and see if it could be Wulfy. Then he started to tell me about the circumstances under which this animal had been found. Things started to escalate and I felt a chill run up my arms and goose bumps rose over the surface of my skin.  Could it be? I dared not hope, I held my breath as I listened to the story he told me. I was so excited I blurted out he was wearing a long choke chain! He was Neutered! He was the same color phase! He was an older sweet and so polite gentleman to everyone! It had to be him. No two dogs in the world like that in the same area that close together!  All I had to do was wait for pics and confirmation now.

I called Mommy and I called the Shelter in California. I ran to the computer to get the emails that were waiting in my email box. There he was pretty as you please, happy, smiling, hanging out with the shelter personnel!  A little on the thin side, and a little dirty but who wouldn't be after 3 months on the road!
My name is Rob, and I am the animal control officer in Sedona.  I am the person who captured the wolf hybrid, which had been running at large in Seodona for well over two months (probably more)  His well being became the focus of all that I did for weeks, and I spent a great deal of time watching him, following him, and most of all, hoping that I could capture him.  The morning I walked up to the trap and found him waiting for me was no doubt the best of my animal control career.  I am so happy to have all these pieces of the puzzle falling into place, and so happy to have the history of his journey.  I was at the humane society the day he went to his new home, and hugs and tears were part of the moment.  This guy is truely loved, and has been as your story conveys.  Thanks so much for sharing the photos etc with all of us.  Gary at the humane society has shared them all with me.  bless you in all the work that you do.  This is a holiday story for us all.
cheers,
Rob

 

How wonderful it was to hear from you today.  I am sending along the only two photos I have of him at this time.  However, if this is him I will be sending you more (if you wish).  I will tell you this animals "Sedona Story" but let me first tell you (and assure you) that he has found a home and folks who thinks he walks on water and love him dearly. 
    Okay, you will see by the two photos I send you, the gentleman in the uniform is Rob, Sedona's Animal Control Officer.  He is not only a very competent man at his job but he is a wonderful soul who puts at least 200 % into his job.  His compassionate reputation in this town precedes him.  And it was so in the case of this dog as well. 
    It started about six or eight weeks ago when this dog was sighted in a certain section of Sedona walking the streets and at times attempting to cross the streets.  In fact, on my way to the Shelter in the morning, I spotted him several times.  The citizens were extremely concerned, not because he represented a Wolf Hybrid but more for his safety.  For weeks after this, folks attempted to lure him to them but with no luck.  It seemed that although he wasn't acting aggressive, he was not going to go to anyone as well.  In fact, the person who now has him in her home (I'll get to that in a minute) had even spent time in the park where he was known to hang out and purchased several large "steaks" for him. 
    As time went on, more calls came into me at the Shelter about spotting this "Wolf" out there.  In the meantime, Rob searched and even on several occasions was close to capturing him, but again, it wasn't going to happen.
    It got to the point that citizens, including Rob, spotted what appeared to be a very "tight" choke chain around his neck and it even seemed toward the end that he was limping down the street. 
    About a week or so ago, Rob was able to procure a large Have-a-Heart Trap and with the assistance of a Sedona Police Officer, placed the trap in the area where the dog was seen quite often, with the appropriate food in the trap.  One morning I received a call at the Shelter from Rob saying he had trapped the dog.  Rob was beside himself with joy that he was able to do this for the dog.  He said he was on his way to bring the animal to my Shelter for safekeeping. 
    I met Rob out in the parking area of the Shelter and together we carried the animal in the trap back to my Isolation Area of the Shelter.  Remember, we had no idea what we were dealing with at the time and also the dog had been living out in the mountains for over six weeks; so I just wanted to proceed cautiously.  I made sure my employees set up a very nice kennel in Isolation with several large blankets, water, and started out with just a bit of food several times throughout the day. 
    Again, not knowing what I was dealing with at that time, my instructions to my employees were, no one was to deal with this animal for the first 24 hours except me.  I spent that day, about every half hour or so, walking back and talking with the animal; then leaving again.  By the end of the day, I felt comfortable to open the kennel door and kneel just outside.  By looking at this animal, I observed several things.  One, he was completely "pooped" and I firmly believe he just gave up.  Two, he didn't appear to show the slightest sign of aggression.  Three, I was pretty sure he had become more nocturnal than anything else because not only was he exhausted from being out there for such a long time, he slept a lot during the day and was more alert as we were closing up the Shelter.  I also noticed that he appeared to be weak and I chalked that up for what he had just been through.  It was at this time that I noticed the choke chain on him.  I felt comfortable enough by the end of the day to make an easy approach and was even able to put my hand on his neck area to feel the chain.  It was at that time that I determined that the chain was very tight around the neck and knew it was not going to just slip over his head.  So, I asked one maintenance person to please bring in some really good metal cutters and was determined to get that darn thing off him first thing in the morning.  (By the way, any animal that comes into our Shelter wearing a choke chain, it is replaced immediately with a regular buckle collar and the chain is immediately placed in a trash can). 
 
    Next morning first thing I went to his kennel, opened the gate and knelt down.  He got up slowly, walked toward me and began to pant.  I reached out, rubbed his neck and that's when I discovered the chain was not, in fact, around his neck but around his neck and left leg which accounted for the apparent limp.  I then began calmly talking with him as I grabbed the snips and with making two cuts in the chain, it fell off.  Actually, it appeared that his whole left side relaxed immediately.  I then went and got more food for him and it was at that time that he and I became "good buds".  I began to take him for walks and allowed my employees to interact with him.
 
    Now, by law, if an animal is brought to us, we must keep them in Isolation for 96 hours (four days).  During this time, Rob had already talked to several ladies in the Sedona area who are truly upstanding citizens as well as quite knowledgeable about Wolf Hybrids/Wolf Dogs.  They each have several themselves and the one where the animal is at this time is the one who attempted to capture it with the steaks in the beginning. 
    During these four days, I expanded the amount attention this animal could receive to include these folks who began to come to the Shelter to walk him and interact with him.  I even allowed them to begin a diet that he would eventually be on once he left the Shelter.   This is very unusual as it is extra work for the employees, but everyone just wanted the best for this kid. 
 
    After the required amount of time, I allowed these folks to come in and take the dog to their home.  The husband and wife who now have this animal also have two female Hybrids and my last report (today) was that this guy has found his Disneyland and is totally getting along with his two new girlfriends.  I spoke with his new parent today and she reported that he likes to go around and smell the yard (large), then hang out with the girls, then come in the kitchen and sit by her as she prepares their food. 
 
    Okay, that's  a long enough story, and as I say, I will attach the only two photos I have but will send more as I receive them.  From the looks of the photos you have sent, this must be the boy.  As you can see from the photos (which were taken on the day he went home), he still needs to gain a bit of weight but I have all the confidence in the world that his new home will accomplish that.  Also, as you can see from the photos, both Rob and I really think a lot of this animal.
 
    Please donít hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions.  I do look forward to talking with you in the future and giving you an update as I receive them.
 
    Thanks again,

 

As it turns out Merkaba's new owners just happen to be friends and volunteers for Where Wolves Rescue for many years now. I am happy to say that he is safe with them and that he may have been looking for people just like Akal and Iala to find peace with, or they are but another stop on a long and lonely journey. We hope not, and we all hope he has come to stay in his forever home. We are so glad he made it, and so glad that he is finally safe and happy, warm and fed, and has friends around him. A joyous time for Merkaba and all his extended family who are now all friends and part of this intricate and moving, group experience. Please consider how saving a wolf can change your life forever too!
Here are some pics of Mr. Merkaba.  One with his new gorgeous view
and one with his new sister Vaji.

He had another great day.  Lots of food about 5 lbs again.  Played all
day with his new friends.  And now sleeping in our bedroom with one of my
girls Shakina.  Please everyone pray that he loves his new home and is
ready to make it his forever home.

Hi Danya

On Monday we took Merkaba to the Vet.  We found out that he has
Erhlichiosis.( more commonly known as tick fever).

This is a tick disease that he may of contracted in California or Camp
Verde.  it was good that he turned himself in when he did because he
needs treatment for about 2 months.

I had a very hard time with this because tick fever and ticks is exactly
why we left Costa Rica and moved here.  I was having anxiety attacks
worrying about him.  My vet in Costa Rica has been consulted as well.
Also my girls did not like Merkaba at all.  But he gets along with their
friends.
Sherrie Hanson who also has wolf dogs and took him for walks while he was
at the humane society and was praying for him when he was loose has
adopted him into her home with her pack today.
Again another happy ending for Merkaba because her pack really likes him
- she has 3 males and Merkaba really gets along with boys more than
girls.  He really was happy to be there.  she has a big fenced in yard -
much more secure than mine, with lots of toys and it is 7 feet tall with
an electric hot wire, and they all come into the house at night.  He is
also only a few blocks away from us so we will still be going over to
take for walks etc..  I told him when I met him that he has a big extended
wolf family here and he is meeting a lot of them.
When we left today - he didn't even bother to come to the fence to say
good bye because he was having fun.

I feel that Sherrie and her husband will be much calmer and be able to
handle his treatment with less emotion and drama and fear than I.
I will keep you posted on his health.


Sincerely,
Iala

Sherrie says she has, or is going to, call Doc and she spoke with Mary
today as well.

Akal is going over every day to feed him and take him for walks as well.

Our whole wolf mother family up here is involved with him and he is in
good hands.  First we want to get him healthy - that will be at least 6
weeks of treatment.  Then when he is feeling strong we can see if he is
enjoying Sherrie's pack - if not we will make sure he is in a good place.

Don't worry
Light
Iala

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT !

Copyright Danya Leshick 2006

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