Wild’s words about wolves inspires T‑shirt company

Thanks to the in­ter­net, a lot of people con­tact me about my books. These are usu­ally folks who have read one (or more) of them and want to com­ment on some as­pect of what I’ve written.

But I was sur­prised to hear from a Canadian com­pany that designs and prints premi­um wild­life T‑shirts for an­im­al lov­ers. Dark & Wilder was cre­ated by Aimé Huot and Ashley Miron and is based in Ottawa, Ontario. The com­pany is named after their two dogs and pro­motes healthy wild­life populations.

But what really made me smile was their com­ment that they’d read a quote by me and found it so pro­found that they cre­ated a meme/​quote to post on their Facebook and Instagram pages.

“I hope people will learn to see wolves for what they are, not what we want or per­ceive  them to be.” Paula Wild


My words and an Algonquin wolf, wow.

Aimé and Ashley’s pair­ing of words and wolf is es­pe­cially poignant as the Algonquin wolf, now only found in parts of Ontario, has been clas­si­fied as threatened since June 2016.



Sometimes called the east­ern wolf, Algonquin wolves are threatened by low pop­u­la­tion num­bers, in­ter­breed­ing with west­ern coyotes and hu­man de­vel­op­ment, as well as hunt­ing, trap­ping and  be­ing hit by vehicles.


Wolves lead a feast and famine existence

Wolves lead a feast and fam­ine ex­ist­ence and can go up to two weeks or longer without eating.

When they do chow down, they make up for it by gor­ging. In sci­entif­ic stud­ies where cap­tive wolves were not fed for sev­er­al days and then giv­en the op­por­tun­ity to eat as much as they wanted – most gained nine kilo­grams (20 pounds) in a frenzy of feeding.

These three wolves  were run­ning and play­ing in deep snow after feed­ing on a big moose kill in Alaska. According to the pho­to­graph­er, John Hyde, the oth­er nine mem­bers of the pack were too full to move.

I love the en­ergy and move­ment of this photo and the play­ful­ness of it too. The wolves look like they’re run­ning full out, yet ap­pear to be with­in touch­ing dis­tance of one another.

Return of the WolfI won­der if they were glid­ing through the snow like syn­chron­ized swim­mers or de­lib­er­ately bump­ing into each other?

Either way, I’m de­lighted the im­age was chosen for the cov­er of Return of the Wolf. 

Youth inspired to coexist with wolves

You nev­er know who’s go­ing to show up or what will hap­pen when on book tour. In Squamish, BC I was pleas­antly sur­prised to see a fair num­ber of chil­dren at­tend­ing my present­a­tion “In Search of the Real Wolf.”

I could tell by their faces that they loved the wolf im­ages on the big screen. But even though my talk is geared to an adult audi­ence, the nine- to thir­teen-year old crowd asked the most – and the best – questions.

Do male wolves kill their pups?” “Like lions, do young­er male wolves come in and take over from the lead wolf?” “Do wolves only eat meat?”

But the very best ques­tion of all was, “Is not feed­ing wolves and scar­ing them away if they come too close all we have to do to co­ex­ist with them?”

The young girl made co­ex­ist­ence sound so simple. And, to a large ex­tent, it can be, if every­one un­der­stands how to be­have around wildlife.

Afterwards, Cinnamon, Vanessa, Lennox, Angus and oth­ers had their par­ents buy Return of the Wolf and brought their cop­ies up to me to sign. It was all very grat­i­fy­ing but I wondered if any of them would ac­tu­ally read the book.

Two days later I re­ceived an email from Liesl Lockhart in north­ern Saskatchewan. “I ab­so­lutely love your book,” she wrote. “My nine-year old daugh­ter is cur­rently de­vour­ing it and lov­ing every page. Her teach­er wants to read it and share some in­sights for sci­ence class. Talk about in­spir­ing the next generation!”

I must ad­mit, the in­terest from youth and that en­dorse­ment from a nine-year old warms my heart more than a five-star review.

Banner photo by Cheryl Alexander