"I think" is better than "I feel" if you know the difference. Logically isn't a well taken care of animal in captivity better than a starving or ill one in the wild? I know not all are starving and ill in the wild but it certainly is a hard life.
Sorry, but I am with her on this one.
I have volunteered at a captive wolf sanctuary for over ten years now. A few times, even living there.
A wolf in the wild can live to be around seven years old. This is because they face many obstacles to longevity:
Disease. Disease claims many wolves. Wolves in the wild cannot afford quality veterinarians.
Starvation: Many fast food joints refuse to serve wolves.
Okay, so this was (bad) humor.
But the truth is, I have personally seen wolves who were in their early twenties. (That's human years, folks. The oldest wolf who lived at that particular sanctuary died at age 23.)
Because they were fed 5-8lbs of raw meat daily (This is key... Anything less is cutting their lifespan. This includes beef, chicken, ostrich, Bison, etc... The meat bill is four digits a month to feed 17 wolves.)
They receive excellent veterinary care.
They are loved. Each wolf is allowed human visitors daily. People bond with them... And the wolves with people.
Their lives never consist of hunting, which expends energy. In fact, wolves fed in captivity lose their "ability" to successfully hunt. In my heart of hearts I believe that if they were able, they would not choose to be predators. But that is what they are.
However, they are *not* forever hardwired, as violent, cruel and whatever anthropomorphic emotions you want to assign to them.
People see them snarl, growl, and kill on TV and they instantly think they are these cruel, vicious creatures. These people absolutely refuse to accept that in captivity, when their needs are met by knowledgeable people, they are completely different creatures.
They don't *want* to. Believe a wolf is capable of caring for a human being above and beyond their own safety- I have seen it, several times.
I cannot recommend any wolfaboo go out and buy a wolf at their local pet store and take it home.
In fact, many of the wolves there are rescued from well meaning but ignorant people.
1. A wolf totalled a woman's Mercedes- Benz car when she left him inside whiel she went shopping "Just real quick". The interior was so thrashed the vehicle was sold at auction for parts.
2. A wolf killed a man's cat. He had raised this wolf from a pup.
3. A wolf almost killed a man for his BBQ chicken. This same wolf now takes food gently from your hand. (Him and some of his packmates were scanned for the movie "Twilight")
4. One wolf was rescued from a laboratory that manufactured methamphetamines. He was a pup, then, and was found behind a toiler, snarling at everyone who approached him. His parents were "Guard wolves" and had to be shot on site.
The owner got on her hands and knees, and chewed some raw beef, sharing it with the pup until he trusted her. This wolf grew up to star in several movies, and before his passing, was great friends with a cat. The cat would ride on his back, dressed like a cowboy. He was the kindest, most gentle creature you could know.
I have seen wolves endure agitations that would make a dog snap, and never utter a growl.
Would I recommend anyone own a wolf?
Would I say that nobody should ever own a wolf?
It took me years of regular interaction with them to learn their language. Then to understand their ways. They must "Teach" you, it is never something that can be taught like math, or history. It must be experienced.
For those who take the time to learn about them firsthand, who put in the hours, who put up with the nips, the messy, filthy wolves scent marking them, and yes- even the bites (Always my fault.) they earn the reward to truly understand this feared creature.
In California you must document a minimum of six years of experience interacting with them before you can own one as a "pet". As much as I disagree with in this state, I agree with this.
Someone with six years of interaction will likely be able to own a wolf, to speak about it, to care for the creature, and give it a good, whole, long and healthy life.
Are there people who own wolves who shouldn't?
Of course. Are there people who have kids who aren't good parents? Yes. People who should not own fast cars, but do? Yep. The list is endless (Please don't pick it apart. I hope you get my point.)
To know a wolf... To trust it, and to feel in your spirit that it, too, trusts you is something 99.9999% of people will never know. But to say that "Nobody should own a wolf" is bigoted, ignorant, and foolish in my opinion.
People will always find ways to get things they (probably) should not have. That's life. To envision a place where you cannot get your hands on anything that can harm you, is to envision **** in my opinion.
Here are some pics.
Here's a 220LB Canadian Tundra wolf. He bonded to me and was my best friend until his passing. When he died, he weighed 240 lbs. Some of it was fat, yes, but his forearms were as big as mine!
Here we are, kicking back.
Here we are. He often feel asleep around me. He also shared food with me. (But, uh, I never really took him up on it. I think you can guess why.)
Dismantling my jacket:
Reaching over me to get some French Fries.
Here he falls asleep with meet between us. I know some dogs that won't even do that.
Smooching a wolf.
Here he is munching on a treat I gave him. He decided to share it, but I just let him have all of it XD
My baby boy. He was my reason for cleaning up my life. For getting out of trouble. He was my brother, my friend, my bond.
My best friend.
Both of us. Pretending to be asleep. XD
Waking up. Hey, you got any bacon?
Teeth. FYI, my hands are huge. I can stretch across more piano keys than Motzart.
My baby boy.
Now, before you say I raised him from a pup, i did not. If you are thinking he was a sweety- he was not. If you think i spent years getting to know him before I could do these things- I did not.
He was separated from his pack because he was vicious. He tore the other wolves up and was too aggressive to remain with them. He would simply end up killing one of them had he of remained.
Only a few people were allowed in with him. He wasn't necessarily human aggressive. But he had no boundaries, and would tear your clothes, or rough you up pretty bad if he felt the unction. We had an agreement. We would wrestle and thrash around, and he'd let me win. Usually. If I was depressed, i got a beating until I was no longer depressed. That... did the trick. I was one of only two people who he allowed to grab him, and pull him off people who were brave enough to enter his enclosure.
He was nearly eight when I first went in with him. In fact, I mostly ignored him because he was the "Wild one". I didn't want to get bit!
He was the only wolf to have bitten me badly. It ripped the muscle in my arm, scarred the bone, and made a cool scar.
And it was entirely my fault.
If you think you can just buy a wolf and it will love you- forget about it. The bond he and I shared was once in a lifetime. A wolf owes you *nothing*, even if you are it's sole means of survival. In it's mind it is always thinking, "Well, I can hunt for food."
It is not like a dog.
But if a wolf sees something in you- and yes- they see far more than most people are comfortable with- that wolf will give it's life for you.
And if you ever leave it, it will stop eating until it withers away.
That bond, I believe, is what happened here between us.
Most of the other wolves loved people anyway, and would shower them with affection and wolf derps.
But what I felt I had with this one went beyond that. I know when I die and see God, Mishomi will be there, too.
(Romans 8:19-23, Isaiah 11:6)