In Memory of Whisper
Animal Stories from

From Wolf Sanctuary - WOLF
September 2011

Whisperís story begins, unfortunately, as so many others do.

Purchased in Wyoming as an adorable pup by a family unprepared for a wild animal, Whisper soon began to educate them about the energetic nature of a young wolf. After destroying the house, the backyard and repeatedly escaping from the outdoor kennel, her family was forced to keep her on a chain. Due to an insufficient diet, Whisper soon became so food aggressive that they had to build a shoot into her outdoor run to feed her safely.

Vet care was also a problem, as it is illegal to own a wolf or wolf-dog in the state of Wyoming. When Whisper had to be boarded at a vet office for several days due to a serious illness, they muzzled her tightly and refused to remove it until she left, leaving a lifelong scar across her nose. Being un-spayed, Whisper eventually ended up with a litter of pups and after her owners advertised them for sale in the local newspapers, the authorities swarmed in. Threatening to confiscate and destroy Whisper if they didnít place her elsewhere, her guardians began frantically searching for someone who could take her. After all other possibilities were exhausted it was determined that Whisper would come to Wolf.

In March of 1999, Whisper arrived at Wolf a beautiful, 3-year-old alpha female full of life, energy and attitude. Obviously missing her pups, Wolf was lucky enough to rescue three 10 week old puppies out of New Mexico shortly after her arrival and she took to them instantly. When they had to be moved away from her in 2002, Whisper was placed with another young male in need of mothering, Matoskah. Together they taught hundreds of people who have come to the Sanctuary what it means to be a wolf and Whisper was famous letting you know when you were not behaving appropriately as a wolf with a quick nip and a stern eye.

On July 14th, 2011 volunteers reported that Whisper had not come down to receive her morning meds. When staff went up to investigate we found her lying in the far corner of her enclosure unable to get up. Clearly something was terribly wrong -- she had experienced some type of critical episode during the night. We quickly made arrangements for our vet to come up and decided to move Whisper to the bottom of her enclosure so the vet could do an exam. Prepared for Whisperís infamous attitude at being forced to do anything she didnít want to do, we were surprised when she let us put her onto the stretcher with no sedative, muzzle or eye covering.

We carried her down the enclosure like Cleopatra being carried by her Nubian servants! She held her head high with a most satisfied smile on her beautiful face. By the time the vet arrived it was very clear that Whisper was ready to leave this world for the next and she was helped to pass peacefully.

Whisper was an integral part of Wolf, helping to establish many of our policies and rules regarding interacting with the animals at the Sanctuary. Whisper was a wildly social, independent and commanding alpha who will continue to awe and inspire us for she is WOLF.

Return to: Animal Stories