Dakota joined the Big Pack in the Sky on March 6th, 2021.
He passed at 14 years old due to old age/tumor growth.
Dakota was born in April of 2006, and arrived at Wild Spirit in June of that very same year. Shortly after we rescued the litter of Arctic wolf pups (Alice, Thunder, Sabine, Sugar, Storm and Powder), a friend of Wild Spirit called to see if we were interested in more puppies. A litter of 8 Arctic-Timber crosses had been born in Oregon to a man who did not know what to do with them. We explained that we really had our hands full already and wouldn’t be able to take them. However, a former staff member who was planning to open a sanctuary in Ohio was eager to take the Arctic-Timber litter.
Out of the 8 pups in the litter, 3 were sold to private owners and the other 5 were brought to Wild Spirit for temporary housing while their rescuer made arrangements to come pick them up. Unfortunately, his plans to open a sanctuary fell through, and Wild Spirit ended up keeping the 5 puppies: 3 boys and 2 girls, named Forest, Dakota, Brutus, Savannah, and Sassy. Since they were only a week apart in age from our Arctic puppies, we put them together and let them grow up as one big family.
As the Arctic-Timber puppies grew up, it became clear from their behavior and appearance that they were not pure wolves, but rather high-content wolfdogs, meaning they were ~85-95% wolf. Despite this difference, they lived happily with the Arctic wolves, and they eventually all divided into independent packs, each made of a combination of the two litters.
As they divided, Dakota chose to live with Powder, Sugar, and Sabine, and they became known as Powder Pack. Despite growing up together, this pack has had some drama over the years; Nimoy lived with them briefly before they kicked him out, and Sabine was also forced to leave in 2014. After Sabine’s removal, things were peaceful for this group of three for quite some time, but Dakota was eventually kicked out, as well!
Dakota was a very social, incredibly energetic boy. He was comfortable meeting people, but would jump up to give kisses, so we had to be careful which Caretakers he met so he didn’t knock people over.
Likes & Dislikes
It’s safe to say that Dakota loved food. He used to eat in a sub-enclosure, so he wouldn’t steal his former companions’ meals. He was one of our most social rescues, and loved meeting new people.
Dakota disliked when it was time to remove the old enrichment bones from his habitat.