Last Stand of the Lobo [Article in Hunter-Trader-Trapper Outdoorsman]


This article describes Dr. McCleery's pack of the last of the lobo wolves, of which he usually maintains about 60. An anecdote is given of Dr. McCleery's interaction with wolves about 30 years previous. He was traveling the West and observed a pair of wolf pups devour animal bones without difficulty. Intrigued, he purchased a pair of wolves (presumably pups) to study their digestion. Later his interest in wolves developed further.

Dr. McCleery cautions that his wolves are not pets. He used to sell wolf pups, but buyers were usually unable to handle or understand the wolves as they matured. In one instance, Dr. McCleery sold a wolf pup to a showman, and once the wolf matured it killed the showman's wife. Dr. McCleery no longer sells his wolves.

Dr. McCleery selectively breeds his wolves to endure captivity without becoming vicious. He trusts his wolves until they are about one year old, at which point he becomes more cautious with them, and sometimes carries a chair as a weapon when entering their dens. He occasionally takes the younger wolves for walks on a chain. The article describes the lobo wolves' natural history and extermination (wolves have not been seen in the West for the past 15 years), the setup of their pens at Dr. McCleery's park, the wolves' pups, behavior with their mates, hardiness, diet, habit of "going bad" in the late summer, howling, and beauty. Old Idaho is the only wolf mentioned by name - his history is described.


August 1939





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