BEN CORNISH - DOG LISTENER

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Wolve­s

body.GIFWolves are gentle, shy, secretive animals that have a bad reputation because of human myths and economic reasons (killing livestock). They live for an average of three years.

Wolves live in a well-oiled machine pack. Everybody knows his or her job. With the Alpha male and Alpha female the leaders of the pack and are in charge of the packs decisions including feeding and breeding. In addition, a Beta Nurse maid is the sister of the Alpha female. The Omega is at the bottom of the pack but has a key role in taking down prey during a hunt. Wolves cannot be too loyal to the pack. If a wolf is disloyal to a member of the pack, it is time for that member to move on. 

Wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park (USA) in 1995.  There favourite time of year is the winter as the snow slows the herbivores and they can hunt more during the night. They are opportunist feeders and will eat Bison, Elk and Coyotes.  They can smell prey 500 metres away (half a kilometre) and work as a pack to kill the prey. Attacking the hindquarters trying to bite the femoral artery, needing several attacks to bring down their prey. There are huge distances between one pack and another in Yellowstone. One wolf’s pack territory can stretch 200 square miles (322 kilometre) compare that to our domesticated dogs who live next door to each other confined in our homes and gardens. We call this the pressure cooker effect! Wolves most important senses are smell then hearing then sight. A Wolfs howl can carry 4.5 miles (7 kilometre) and they do bark like the domesticated dog.

The domesticated dog's appearance and lifestyle has changed a great deal over centuries but this has not removed its basic instincts and canine language. The DNA of the domestic dog is so similar to that of the wolf (there is a 0.2% difference) that the two species can breed and produce fertile young. For more information on the Wolf please go too http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolf

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