"Where Paradise is Just a Howl Away"

                                                       Wolf Varieties

There are several "breeds" or sub-species, that are used in North American wolfdog breeding programs today. On this page, I will address these varieties, along with North American wolves that are endangered and not used in wolfdog breeding programs.

The following is a list of Subspecies that are commonly used in wolfdog breeding programs.

The wolves described on this page are all subspecies of---

Gray Wolf:

Latin Name: Canis Lupus

Alias: Timber Wolf


Alaskan Interior Wolf: 

Latin Name: Canis lupus pambasileus

Alias: Yukon Wolf

The Alaskan Interior is among the largest wolves in North America, if not the largest. Interior Alaskan Wolves are usually of a darker color, most often black or black mixed with either brown, gray, or white. They are very large wolves, measuring 5 to 7 feet in length from tip of nose to end of tail. They are at present the largest wolves in North America and possible the world.


Alaskan Tundra Wolf: 

Latin Name: Canis lupus tundrarum

Alias: Tundra Wolf

The Alaskan tundra wolf is a large wolf measuring from 50 to 64 in length (nose to end of tail). Its weight can vary in males from 85 to 176 pounds, and in females from 80 to 120 pounds. They are usually seen in light colored to pure white coats, though they also come in dark coats, including black.


Arctic Wolf: 

Latin Name: Canis Arctos 

Alias: Polar Wolf

Arctics are medium sized wolves that are between 64 and 79 cm tall and 89 to 189 cm long, weighing between 35 and 45 kg on average, though there have been specimens found weighing up to 68 kg. Most are white, but arctics can also be found in grey as well. 


British Columbian Wolf: 

Latin Name: Canis lupus columbianus 

Alias: BC Wolf

The BC was one of the larger subspecies of the Gray Wolves in North America. They weighed between 80-150 pounds, and had long coats which were usually black, often mixed with grey, or brown. They measured roughly 60 to 70 inches in length. The original BC wolf became extinct in the 1950's and has been replaced by a subspecies of similar size and the black-phase coloring, also called the British Columbian.


Eastern Timber Wolf: 

Latin Name: Canis lycaon

Alias: Great Plains Wolf

Canis lupus lycaon, commonly known as the eastern timber wolf, was the first gray wolf subspecies to be identified in North America in 1775. Fairly recent molecular studies have suggested it as being a distinct species of its own, the Canis lycaonSmaller than the common gray wolf, they weigh anywhere from 50 to 100 lbs. The average adult male weighs 75 lbs. and the average adult female weighs 60 lbs. They measure 5 to 5 1/2 feet in length (tip of nose to end of tail) and 25 to 36 inches in height.


Mackenzie Valley Wolf: 

Latin Name: Canis lupus occidentalis

Alias: Northern Timber Wolf; Canadian Timber Wolf

Mackenzie Valley wolves typically stand about 32–34 inches (80–85 cm) at the shoulder and males weigh between 100 and 170 pounds (45–70 kg). Originally identified as subspecies Canis lupus mackenzii in 1943, the Mackenzie Wolf was reclassified in 1992 as being a member of the subspecies Canis lupus occidentalis.


While each wolf subspecie has its own nuance that differentiates it from his

 cousins, all of the wolves, regardless of subspecie, share most of the same

 physical features; i.e. the flat wedge-shaped skull, knobby leg joints, grizzled

 fur, thick-as-leather prick-ears and large feet are among the most noticeable.

 In reality, any differences among all these subspecies are so minor as to be 

meaningless except to a few specialists.


ENDANGERED North American Wolves:

Mexican Grey Wolves-- 

Latin Name: Canis lupus baileyi

Alias: Lobo

As the smallest subspecies of gray wolf, the Mexican gray wolf varies in size from 50 to 64 inches long (nose to tail), 24 to 32 inches shoulder height, and weighs from 50 to 90 pounds. Mexican Wolves are critically endangered. All current captive Mexican wolves contribute only to repopulating the wild; it is immoral and very illegal to sell these pups to the public for the purpose of creating wolf/dog outcrosses. Therefore, there are NO Mexican wolf bloodlines in any current wolfdog anywhere.


Red Wolf-- 

Latin Name: Canis Rufus

Alias: Coywolf

Almost hunted to the brink of extinction, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rounded up fewer than 20 pure red wolves to be bred in captivity in 1980. As of 2007, approximately 207 captive red wolves reside at 38 captive breeding facilities across the United States. Thanks to these programs, more than 100 red wolves currently live in the wild. Interbreeding with the coyote has been recognized as a threat affecting the restoration of red wolves. There are no red wolf bloodlines in captive wolfdog breeding programs.

Due to their rarity, many unscrupulous breeders think they can profit off

 pups that have been claimed to have "Red" wolf in their lines, 

especially those whose "wolfdogs" have a unique smooth-coated appearance or

 reddish fur. These animals are more likely crossed with cattle dog or other

 prick-eared stock dog in order to achieve that exotic-type look.