The Heartwarming Story Of A Wolf Who Befriended Dogs And Humans

Wild wolves can be vicious predators. But sometimes, they aren’t. Residents of Juneau, Alaska, had their expectations of wolves turned upside-down in 2003 when a resident wolf ended up being a friend, not a predator.

When nature photographer Nick Jans saw tracks outside of his house, they led him to an animal that would change his life. This one wolf would change the lives of Juneau’s residents (and their dogs). Learn about the friendliest, most playful black wolf in recent history.

Tracks Outside Their House

In December 2003, nature photographer Nick Jans was sitting on his porch in Juneau, Alaska. While looking outside, Nick noticed tracks outside of his door. The tracks, which looked like paw prints, lead to the lake near his house.

Wolf tracks are seen in the mud.
Arterra/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Arterra/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

He grabbed his wife, Sherrie, and his yellow labrador, Dakotah, to follow the tracks. The three took a trip to the Mendenhall Glacier Recreation Area near their home. They had no idea what they would find at the end of those tracks.