Pupdate #1- the good and the sad.

veterinarian with wolf pup in hands
Dr. Vanderford checking on a red wolf pup

News to report on the pups and not all of it happy:

Four pups are doing great. They seem to be thriving. They’ve gained 43%-53% since initial weights were taken which is right on track. Some have started to vocalize when we pick them up. “Robust and active” were some of the words Dr. Vanderford used. Their feet look pretty good, they are peeing and pooping, and doing everything pups should do at this age.


Unfortunately, not all the news is good.

One of the pups, #2 (female), has a cut on her toe that we noticed initially and treated, but it has gotten worse. We spent much of Monday in consultation with numerous veterinarians, Red Wolf SSP colleagues, and even pharmaceutical companies trying to come up with the best plan for this pup. We started her on a long acting antibiotic and are hoping for positive changes. Her foot is still swollen, but less red. We hope she will be fine, but we know that foot pad issues in the first two weeks are a critical concern.


One pup, #4 (male), is not with us anymore. He died Monday. His weight and body condition were initially good, but his gums and mucus membranes were paler than the other pups. It was not anything that made us think he was in a grave situation. It’s hard to share the news, but it’s news to be shared. The first 30 days are critical and sensitive for pups. The issues noted –  a death and serious foot issues- while sad and difficult, are on par for what can and does happen.

Dr Vanderford with red wolf pup
Dr. Vanderford checks the sucking response




We’ll continue to monitor the pups closely. In my next Pupdate, I’ll share updates, photos, and a bit about the next few weeks and what our plans are.


Note also that parents are doing a great job. The male is out and about so you can see him (and he’s shedding).

The female spends most of her time in the den with the pups, but comes out a couple times a day to eat. Courtney, a friend, got the picture of her below. Some staff even saw her come out of the den for food and the male came down and regurgitated food for her

female wolf in grass
female wolf in search of food

two pups in hand

4 responses to Pupdate #1- the good and the sad.

    • Sherry Samuels says:

      thanks for the nice comment– we think the pups are great too

  1. Lillian P Spiller says:

    I’ve been following our pups and the Wolf Conservation pups religiously!! I was sad to hear about the one pup that didn’t make it 😕. So now we have 3 pups?? Thanks so much for keeping us all up to date! Hoping to see them soon ❤️

    • Sherry Samuels says:

      two pups at the Museum now. They seem to be doing great and are starting to wobble around

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