Here is a Boltz update for 10 September 2020:
When working with wolves, we are always dealing with a species that has some innate fear avoidance behavior. We socialize the pups at a young age to try to overcome some of their fear response in a human environment, but being neophobic is one of the challenges of managing wolves and makes them much different than dogs to manage. When a wolf is not feeling well, it is not uncommon for them to retreat to a comfortable spot and avoid pack interactions. This may be a defense mechanism to avoid being vulnerable or may just be in response to feeling poorly. Boltz has found comfort in the upper wooded portion of the enclosure. Staff bring him food, water and have been diligent in getting him his medication. Because we don’t have a diagnosis yet, we start at some basics and work our way towards more significant treatment. His symptoms seem to be pointing towards a disc compression that may improve with steroids. But, before starting anyone on steroids, we had to make sure he didn’t have an infection (or that a protozoa could be causing some neurological symptoms), so we started him on antibiotics first. He completed his antibiotics and started a full dose of steroids today. We hope that if he feels better, he will want to come down to the front medical pen where we can have a better chance of drugging him for a trip to the vet for further diagnostics. The medical pen and the pack holding area both have chutes with overhead guillotine gates that can be intimidating for wolves even on a good day. So, we decided to move Grizzer out of the Pack Holding Area for the day and leave the large 4 ft by 8 ft gate open in case Boltz decided to come down for a visit. We will keep you posted on his progress and any further diagnostics.