30 Interesting Facts About Wolves

Written by: Zoe Adams
Reading time: 3 mins
Last updated: March 17, 2021

Did you know that a wolf can hear 20 times better than a human being can?

Facts About Wolves

We’ve searched high and low for this list of the top thirty most interesting facts about the dog family’s largest members, wolves.

If you love these animals, you love these 30 interesting facts!

Wolves are the largest members of the dog family.

Canis Lupis‘ is Latin for Gray Wolf, which is the most common.

It is believed that the Red Wolf (also known in Latin as ‘Canis Rufus‘) is to be a cross-breed of Gray Wolf and coyote.

The ‘Canis Simensis‘ (Ethiopian Wolf) lives in Africa.

The domestic dog (known in Latin as ‘Canis Familiaris‘) shares many wolf traits.

Many species have become extinct, while many remain in a vulnerable state.

In Eastern Europe and the USA, wolves are being reintroduced into the wild and into research parks.

Wolves live in packs of up to 20.

A single wolf can be up to 5ft in length, standing at 3ft.

One of the heaviest wolves on record weighed 130lbs.

A female wolf can have up to six pups.

Wolves generally prefer larger prey such as deer but will settle for something smaller, such as rabbits.

Wolves are estimated to live up to 13 years old.

The strongest male and female pairing lead the pack and are known as alphas.

Pack alphas are the only couple to mate.

Female wolves live in underground dens for the spring to birth and feed their blind and deaf pups.

The entire pack is expected to assist in childbearing.

A wolf’s howl is a method of communication that is the loudest when in harmony with others. A single wolf howl can be heard up to 6 miles (10 km).

A wolf’s hearing is twenty times better than a human’s.

Their long muzzle ends with a hyper-sensitive nose, which is one hundred times better than a human’s.

Their thick fur helps them survive the bitter climates.

Wolves hunt in packs by stalking and attacking old, sick, or weak animals.

A wolf can eat up to 9kg on one meal alone. This includes the bones, fur, and meat.

A single wolf can travel up to 124 miles (200 km) in 24 hours.

In Roman mythology, Romulus and Remus were raised by wolves.

The fearsome werewolf legend has roots in ancient Greece, where after being insulted, Zeus turned King Lycaon of Arcadia into a wolf.

Some people believe that they suffer from lycanthropy – the belief that they can turn into wolves.

In Amerindian cultures, the wolf is seen as a pathfinder and a great teacher.

In Norse mythology, however, the most feared and hated wolf was Fenrir, the eldest child of Loki. It was foretold that Fenrir would kill Odin, and so he was bound by the Gods.

Wolves feature heavily in much pop-culture, such as:
a. Fairy tales (the Big Bad Wolf)
b. Fantasy fiction (The Sight by David Clement-Davies)
c. Fiction (White Fang by Jack London)
d. Film (Alpha and Omega)
e. Games (Cloud Strife of Final Fantasy VII has a silver wolf motif)
f. Manga (in Bleach, Sajin Komamura has the head of a wolf)
g. Music (metal band Metallica have a song ‘Of Wolf and Man,’ which features werewolf related lyrics)
h. Television (in Game of Thrones, Dire Wolves are the sigil of House Stark).

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4 Comments

  1. Krisha April 10, 2020

    This website helped with my school project.

  2. Elizabeth May 28, 2019

    This web site is the best!

  3. Sam Walker January 2, 2017

    As usual, there are a number of errors in this article. There is so much misinformation out there these days, and people only read what they want to hear rather than dig for the truth.

    Let’s start with only eating old, sick, or weak animals. A few years ago in Idaho an elk herd was found where over 60 cow elk had been killed because they were pregnant. The wolves pulled the cows down, tore out the fetus with the cow still alive, ate half of it and moved on to the next cow., repeating the same thing. The snow was too deep for the cows to effectively run away. Plus the majority of them were hamstrung by the wolf pack. The people that came upon them talked about watching cows die that were still alive and there was nothing they could do.

    The there’s the sport killing of over 200 sheep in Dillon Montana. None of the sheep were eaten. The wolves moved from one to another killing them for fun.

    There are several videos you can find of a pack chasing elk into a small lake, then surrounding it so the only way out is through them. They don’t single out a particular animal to do this to. They chase ALL of them into the water.

    The largest wolf on record is not 130 lbs. That’s cherry picking a specific species. There are numerous Canadian / Siberian Grays that have been over 200 lbs.

    From Wolf Country on mating
    “Twenty to forty percent of the packs contain at least two adult females produce two litters”.

    1. Catie November 2, 2019

      Thank you! This was great information for an assignment for overall general wolves!