A Journey of Hope to a Better Life

Their Journey Begins...

It was the middle of the night when more than one dozen wolves rolled into Wildlife Waystation in the back of two large trailers. It had been a long ride across several states over many days. But the animals immediately started a new, better life after being rescued from a suspected fur farm. Their stories, like so many others at our sanctuary, brings hope for animals which deserve healthy, content, happy lives.

During the last months, Wildlife Waystation and Lockwood Animal Rescue Center (LARC) cooperated to save wolves from abuse and destruction. The facility where the wolves were housed, located in the Midwest, is currently awaiting judicial judgement after being forced by federal and state authorities to cease operations due to allegations of killing the animals for their pelts in violation of the federal Endangered Species Act. "These wolves had literally been snuck out under the cover of darkness," said Matt Simmons, Co-Founder of LARC, who led the rescue operation. "The woman who runs the place was trying to get them off of her property away from authorities, but we were able to intercede," he said. Lawsuits have been filed accusing the operation of breeding wolves, transrectally electrocuting the animals and then selling the pelts for profit.

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"When we heard about what was happening to these wolves, we knew we had to do something," said Dr. Rebecca Richard, Chief Veterinarian at Wildlife Waystation. "One of our roles is to offer homes to animals who are abused." Richard supported the LARC team offering expertise in the assessment of the animals' overall health and arranging for their transfer to Wildlife Waystation.

Their arrival and Unloading

It was no small feat unloading 15 wolves and placing them in new homes. It took Wildlife Waystation's keeper team, veterinary staff, volunteers, as well as the LARC crew to move the wolves out of the trucks. The vets handled the initial well-being checks and treated injuries sustained prior to their arrival. Teams of people carried crates up and down steep hillsides on the hottest days. "Wolves can dig and jump," said Richard. "We have to be very careful so they are held in spaces that keep them safe and give them plenty of room to roam."

We Used Our New Crates

After the Creek Fire in December, Wildlife Waystation initiated the Great Crate Campaign. We've been working to raise $75,000 to construct transfer cages for all of our animals. Since the bulk of the funds had already been raised for crate construction -- we still need $9000 -- we made the initial investment to build the crates just in time to be able to move the wolves.

Medical Treatment

After the wolves completed the mandatory quarantine period, which allows for their own protection and for the health of our current animal residents, the male wolves underwent castration. Veterinarians Dr. Attila Molnar of All Animals Veterinary and Dr. Brandon Boren of the Los Angeles Zoo both offered their services pro bono. As animals require anesthesia for castration, the ten male wolves underwent surgery and examination including X rays, vaccination, deworming and bloodwork.


"Castration assures we don't have any unwanted pregnancies," said Richard. "We do not want more animals born in captivity."

The First Taste of Freedom

Immediately upon arrival, the wolves were divided into two packs. Their behavior has to be carefully observed. Wolves are pack animals and we have to build packs with only one alpha leader and where others can get along.


Your Help is Needed!

We have a lot of new mouths to feed, enclosures to build or expand and healthcare maintenance for these animals which would have perished without this rescue. Their names are Khione, Windwalker, Goblin, Skade, River Rock, Shawnee, Lakota, Chumash, Blackfoot, Arapaho, Aleut, Lady Bobtail and Yukon. They are strong, brave, delicate, shy, timid, outgoing, friendly, one is fluffy and another has big golden eyes. They have suffered. They are healing. But now they all have hope. Please help support them with a donation today. Thank you.

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Check out the media buzz!

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Our Cooperation with LARC

Primarily a wolf sanctuary, LARC works with returning combat veterans to rescue wolves, wolf-dogs, coyotes, foxes and horses from around the country. The veterans find a common bond with animals where a mutual path of healing can occur. "By offering the veterans employment and path to recovery, we are healing families, putting our young war heroes back to work, and saving animals at the same time," said Matt Simmons, Co-Founder of LARC. Later this year, Animal Planet is launching a new series "Warriors for Wolves" The show features Simmons and his wife Dr. Lorin Lindner's story rescuing wolves and introducing them to combat vets suffering from PTSD. Wildlife Waystation will be featured in a few of the episodes.

"Warriors for Wolves" premieres Saturday September 1, 2018 on Animal Planet

Watch as Wildlife Waystation is featured in episode 2 on September 2 during the Creek Fire and episode 8 on October 20 during the arrival of the wolves rescued from the fur farm. See the trailer Here

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