In Memory of Nita
2007 – 2013
The Heart of our Wolf Pack was our Omega, Nita. She was the Peacekeeper as well as the Pack jester. The Wolves are missing her so much, they are all very sad. Her caretakers mourn her every time they enter the enclosure; she was the greeter especially at suppertime. There are no words to describe how much we miss this Wolf girl.
When Nita was born at Wolf Howl she was solid black and one of our male caretakers thought she resembled a bear cub. We named her Nita, pronounced Need-a, the Choctaw word for bear in the Muskogean language.
From the beginning Nita was such a character. She learned her name very early on and actually came when you called her. She wound up with a bunch of nicknames that she responded to as well; Gabeetz and Nita Gabetta were her caretaker’s favorites. She was the smallest girl of the 3 in her litter but you would never know it by her behavior. She was constantly challenging her Sister Woha who was the dominant pup. Her and her Sister, Chito had a common bond early on and that was fearing the wrath of Woha. You often saw those two cuddling up to each other. With her caretakers, she was fearless. She stole everything you had if it wasn’t attached. She was also very affectionate and when she was getting belly rubs or scratches, she would pull your hair or put your hand in her mouth if you stopped. I once saw her eat a squirrel whole as she was being chased around their enclosure by the rest of the pack. Nita enjoyed begging and borrowing. If she were human she would be considered a thief. She enjoyed visitors especially those that had bottle-fed or were Wolf Nannies when she was a young pup. Nita loved to sing. She had a very deep howl. When the Wolves howl now it is like something is missing. I know they feel it too.
Nita suffered a seizure in July of 2012 during a tour. It was the first we had ever seen her have. It was very hot that day and the power company had just sprayed the trees less than 50 yards away from the enclosure with chemicals a few days before. Along with our Vet, we were hoping that it was either the heat or the chemicals that caused her seizure, we decided to take a wait and see attitude before we did anything medically as it would be very hard to give her phenobarbital twice a day. Wolves get wise quickly to anything they don’t like or want to do. We never saw her have another seizure. Two days before she died, the late afternoon of March 12th, I was in the enclosure and she was running around having a good time. When I came back an hour later to feed them their supper, she was down. I noticed immediately, as she always met me at the gate to see what was on the menu that evening. When I approached her, she seemed to be having small seizures. She never recovered from this episode and passed away early on the morning of March 14, 2013.
Her spirit will live on at Wolf Howl Animal Preserve. She had so many fans. She was a true Ambassador for her Wild Cousins. We miss her greatly. She is buried at the Preserve down by the creek.