28. Mate Selection, Individual Compatibility, Pack Formation

A Wolf breeder in Alaska calls me up. His bitch wolf goes into season

and goes out. Though he has tried three males and they are friendly and
compatible, she still won’t accept them. I tell him to try another
male. He does. He succeeds. Why? Wolves have instinctive desires as
far as mating is concerned. My attempts at mating sexually incompatible
pairs have proven that THEY know best. There are fewer defective cubs
when they choose their own mates.


Mating for life is easier when the cubs are near the same age. In-
breeding is the cause of white cubs being produced. In the wild they

seldom survive; thus, the reason one seldom sees wild white wolves
except where the packs are geographically controlled. Hernias are often
predominant among in-bred packs as well as abnormal psychology. Avoid
it.


One can breed a daughter back to her father one generation to set
desired confirmation, or personality traits, but that is as far as one
should go. In-breeding in wild pure packs does not have so many adverse
effects, or at least they do not survive to be observed.


In trying to mate a pair, it is best to be sure that one of the animals
is agouti or wild grey colored and the other of a darker phase. Though
white mated with dark does produce nice colored cubs, usually grey.


Oftentimes when strange wolves or hybrids are placed together, one might
kill the other. When attempting to mate adults that are strangers to
each other, I pen them side by side for a month or two before fertility
time. Even the first time or two that I release both of them into the
compound, I stand darned ready to interfere with the garden hose in case

one attempts to injure the other.


[Ed.: Don’t count on water to have any effect whatsoever.]


Males are quite aggressive even to females until compatibility has been
set up as directed. One can easily see if they are compatible by the
male’s stiff leggedness and refraining to bite or nip and by the
female’s coquettish approach to the male. If they are friendly for five
minutes one can begin betting that they will remain so. If one attacks
the other, one can bet that they will never be compatible.


Wolves do not readily accept new pack members. Usually only the
dominant pair are allowed to mate in a family, though there are
exceptions to this thought. How do they keep from in-breeding in the
wild?


Many times, shortly after the pack has ceased carrying food to the cubs
at about 5 to 7 months and they are following to rendezvous points, a
cub will get lost and its howling and crying will attract cubs from
other packs. This is the time that strangers are more readily accepted

and the cubs bring in these strangers and due to intermingling of scent,
they are usually accepted. It is at this period that the cubs are the
most ingratiating, also, and this helps them to be adopted.


These factors can also be interpreted towards the reasons that the
outlying geographical areas between different sub-species are sometimes
populated by an inter-species sub-species. Thus the reason for there
having been so many sub-species. I have seen Nubulis wolves that
interacted close to the Irremotus that were neither but retained some

conformation to both. Usually this inter-pack inter-sub-species NEW
Wolf was held to a minority by the brushing against two hostile sub-
species and never gained enough numbers to become a permanent sub-
species.


Take a look at our native Eastern Timber Wolf, Lycaon. Then step across
the border into Canada. Go up into north western Ontario and north
eastern Manitoba. These wolves are just an overgrown Eastern Timber
Wolf with a totally grizzled face.


So, mating of wolves or high percentage hybrids is tricky to say the
least. Many a planned mating by me has been thwarted by the selectivity
desires of one or both would-be parents, probably with better results
than if I had engineered the matings. So, if you intend to mate, best
get both cubs the same season.


I will not furnish stud service. One reason is a bitch wolf that has
been raised as a pet will come here, see and hear these big strange
studs and be lonesome for home and just “sit on it.” Another is that I

cannot be responsible to the owner that it won’t be injured or killed.
Another reason is my packs are permanently mated; it disrupts the
harmony among them.


Another reason is I’ve been screwed out of the stud fee too damned many
times by supposed friends and trusted people. I can give you a few
more. What if, and it has happened, some frantic bitch ripped the
testicles out of one of my $3,000 studs? Hey man, I sure as Hell
wouldn’t be very easy to get along with, huh?



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29. The Wolf as Teacher and Student

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