This male pup was originally nicknamed Bolts for his characteristic of bolting through the wolf yard and open gates to gain access to the shared fence line with Aidan and Denali. At the time, he was approximately 8 days older than Luna, his pupmate, so his skills and abilities were more enhanced. Later, when Luna had some significant medical issues that required separation, Boltz was even more motivated to see the other wolves. A Name-the-Pup contest suggested a spelling change for his name and it received the most votes out of four choices. Wolf Care Staff were happy with the results since it really fit his personality.
Boltz is representative of the Great Plains subspecies, and joined the Exhibit Pack on July 30th, 2012. Boltz was a pupmate to Luna, the only female of the Exhibit Pack from 2012-2016 and his status in the pack was described as low ranking. In addition to lack of status, he developed a phobia about summertime insects, particularly wasps, hornets and bees. When he heard something buzzing overhead, he would drop his head and retreat to the wooded portion of the enclosure. This certainly didn’t help his status.
In 2016, arctic pups, Axel and Grayson were introduced into the Exhibit Pack and this certainly helped Boltz socially. He had a great bond with the pups and worked in tandem with Axel to test the pack leader Aidan in the fall of 2017 throughout the winter of 2018. Since his testing of Aidan, he seemed to strive for pack leadership, but seems more comfortable being a middle-ranking wolf. During the fall of 2020, staff noticed some instability in his back legs, that later led to his removal from the Exhibit Pack. Initial testing and MRI imagery was unable to pinpoint the cause, but he is likely afflicted with Degenerative Myelopathy, a condition that has no known cure.
For more information on our ambassador wolves, watch extended wolf videos on the International Wolf Center’s YouTube Channel or enjoy a close-up of wolf behavior on our Wolf Watch Cams.