Naia is a female high-content wolf-dog, which means she looks and acts mostly like a wolf, but has some dog in her ancestry. She was born on May 13th of 2019 and came to Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary in July of 2019.
Although she is solid black except for a white spot on her chest, Naia’s fur will lighten as she matures. Eventually, she will be mostly grey like all black-phase wolves and wolf-dogs.
Likes & Dislikes
Naia dislikes her travel crate (used for transport), being ignored by Flurry and disciplined by her domestic dog friends.
Naia was born at a breeding facility in the Northeast where she was intended to be sold. However, the buyer backed out of the deal, leaving Naia’s future uncertain. The breeder, not wanting to keep Naia and feeling the pressure to rehome her quickly, learned of Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary and reached out to have her rescued instead. We knew we could offer her a permanent home with the best possible care, so we welcomed her into our wild family.
While all puppies take an incredible amount of patience and time, high-content wolf-dog pups are even more challenging. After all, they are wild animals that operate and thrive separate from people.
Like all of our high-content wolf-dogs, Naia thinks and acts mostly like a wolf, meaning she demonstrates independence, intelligence, stubbornness, and a wildness that is clearly different from our domestic dog companions. This natural wild spirit is why we do not support wolf-dogs as pets. Many people who adopt wolf-dogs eventually discover this as well, which leads to the animal needing a permanent and safe home in captivity.
While domestic dogs are great at digging and jumping, wolves and high-content wolf-dogs are superior. They are capable of easily climbing out of most enclosures meant to hold larger dogs. This talent makes it very hard to provide escape-proof enclosed spaces where they have enough room to run. Furthermore, wolves and high-content wolf-dogs have no desire to please people, to learn or perform tricks, or to follow commands, including using the bathroom outside.
Wolves and many wolf-dogs also have a natural phobia of new things, so they are often very anxious when confronted by something unfamiliar, whether a tool, strangers, or even a never-before-heard noise. This is often the “deal-breaker” for people who want or buy a wolf or wolf-dog for protection. In fact, the people who have said that their wolf-dog was easier to train and more protective than a domestic dog most likely did not have a high-content wolf-dog at all, but more likely a Malamute or Husky mix. The Nordic breeds of domestic dogs are often confused with wolf-dogs due to media, art, and films (especially pre-C.G.I.), which portray wolves by using dogs in make-up or dogs as models. However, there are many distinct physical differences between wolves and dogs, and therefore wolf-dogs as well.
At Wild Spirit, our rescues are free to set their own boundaries. If they don’t want any human contact, we respect their wishes. We don’t ask or expect them to behave in any certain way. Furthermore, we understand that it is up to us to remain safe when we enter habitats, and thus we accommodate and personalize our caretaking to each individual. Although, if an animal is comfortable and asks for socialization from people, we oblige and respectfully engage. Similarly, no animals are forced to become Ambassadors. If Naia chooses to represent Wild Spirit in that way when she is older than wonderful! However, she is not required nor will she be forced to do so.
Right now, Naia is showing more comfort with the Human Pack and some of their pet dogs than the other rescues, but we suspect that will change as she ages and becomes more confident. In the meantime, the Human Pack shares puppy-raising responsibilities and sleep-overs. When the time comes, we are hoping to place her with one of our seniors, Flurry, who lost his companion, Ally, this past winter.
It will take around 3 years for Naia to reach full maturity, and many changes take place over that time. Regardless of her future personality, quirks, likes and dislikes, this beautiful girl will have a permanent, safe home with us!