True Wolf

This interesting documentary featured by the 2012 Seattle International Film Festival is noteworthy in several respects:
  • The principal humans were duped into taking a wolf puppy for a nature film, then when the film was completed, the filmmakers went away and our humans were left with an animal born in captivity that was too socialized to be released to her certain doom in the wild.
  • Our clear-eyed couple never loses sight of the fact that Koani is a feral wolf. Domestication is out of the question, so they respect her natural instincts and try to oblige her whenever possible.
  • The accommodations they make are amazing, e.g., they provide a 20' tunnel from the outside to the inside cage, so Koani is free to come inside at will and check on her "pack." (Feral wolves are seldom alone.)
  • They "dumpster dive" behind butcher shops to gather the two pounds of raw meat necessary for her daily diet.
  • The cheerful companion dog they obtain for Koani is Mr. Congeniality! Happy, friendly and well-behaved, this guy provides her with another canine presence to meet her need for company. And he happily joins their daily two-hour run so Koani's need to roam is satisfied.
  • The public relations career they launch for Koani takes her from coast to coast and border to border. They are in New York when the twin towers still stood. They visit angry community meetings when wolves are being re-introduced to Yellowstone. (Those folks believe in The Three S's: Shoot. Shovel. Shut up! and can see no compromise with the naturalists.)
We see how balanced are the views of this intelligent and even-handed couple. They understand the ranchers' concern about wolves and know there are a few misconceptions. They try to modify some of those by teaching a little more about wolves to school children and community groups throughout the country.

I very much appreciate the "back-to-nature" handling of Koani's life, up to and including her peaceful death from old age.