The story of Romeo, the wolf who flirted with dogs, is an exceptional story of a wild wolf befriending dogs in the Alaskan city of Juneau. Many citizens of Juneau went to see this spectacle for many years until Romeo was killed by sports hunters.

My wife, who did not exactly approve of this “miscegenation” because of the potential danger, was looking out the window one frosty morning and there was the wolf curled up out on the lake ice, waiting for Dakotah (our dog) to come out.

With that arms folded, slightly protective tone of voice any mother with a cute teenage daughter would use, she said, “There’s that Romeo wolf again.” The name caught on because it fit. He was not only doing this with our dog, he was also flirting with others. But he certainly had favorites, just as people do: dog friends, dog acquaintances, and dog Best friends for ever.

describes Nick Jans, a former hunter, who turned wildlife photographer and the author of  the book A Wolf Called Romeo,

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Wolves are smart, family-oriented, and communicative. Their personalities are clear.

A pack of wolves is always a family. Think of it like the Mafia. The Gambinis do not accept the Genoveses in their midst. They’re very rigorous about that. We were keeping our dog under control and she just slipped out from under my fingers, which were hooked around her collar. That first meeting, when Dakotah—our “Juliet”—and Romeo stood nose to nose, is recorded on the cover of the book.

If you look at that photo, you see the wolf is very much being a boy. He’s standing very tall, with his ears narrow and his tail slightly up, his neck ruff raised a little bit. He’s being very flirtatious. Dakotah is very confident but giving a neutral signal with her tail straight out. They’re both very relaxed; there’s not the least hint of aggression. And that was very typical of how Romeo interacted with dogs.

continues Mr. Jans. Romeo played not only with the local dogs but eventually the whole village turned out to see him. Romeo was eventually killed by hunters for sport at the age of 8.

A Wolf Called Romeo is a wonderful book for a family reading and full of surprises that challenges cultural stereotypes of wolves, human beings, and dogs.

European Wilderness Society congratulates you to Valentine´s day and wishes you a lot of love, positive emotions and true romance!

 

The full story of Romeo including the fight against killing large carnivores in Alaska.

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About Author

Iryna Shchoka is a regional development expert and is based in Uzhhorod, Ukraine.

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