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Refuge for Jim Windwalker's wolf-dog hybrids needs outside help

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Refuge for Jim Windwalker's wolf-dog hybrids needs outside help
Author: Auntie P.
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Total Posts: 11361
Date Joined: 7/15/2006
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Just across Bluff Valley Road from Mt. Carmel Church in Clay County’s Mellow Valley are 62 wolves.

It is a nonprofit rescue project for wolf-dog hybrids run by Jim Windwalker out of his modest single-story brown home, which also serves as the animal clinic.

“We’re an unintentional rescue,” said Windwalker, who lives here with his wife, Jan. “We didn’t set out to do this … We didn’t have a plan to start with.”

But now he, his wife and their Defend the Wolves wildlife rescue project — an arm of Windwalker’s nonprofit First Nations Outreach organization, an American Indian economic development group — have a plan.

Much of the time, wolf-dog owners give them up because of the animal’s size and unpredictability, Mech said.
“We are overcrowded, no doubt about that,” Windwalker said. “When we got Waya, I would never have believed this situation existed.”
Donations trickle in off the Wolf Gardens website, about $200 a month, Jan said. They supplement those monthly Paypal checks by recycling aluminum cans.
But that’s not quite enough to cover the $750 a month it takes to feed 62 big dogs. After 14 years of paying the difference out of pocket, the six-member board of directors for Wolf Gardens is realizing the necessity of grants for nonprofits.
They’re building Wolf Gardens Wildlife Center, a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation center on a 27-acre piece of land behind a friend’s house on Clay County Road 5. It’ll eventually house 72 wolf-dogs, feature North American wildlife and an educational and cultural center for visitors, Windwalker said. The plan calls for a 300-by-500-foot perimeter fence surrounding 36 individual 1,600-square-foot enclosures. Setting up the perimeter fence and the enclosures will cost about $110,000, Windwalker estimates.


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