Indiana – Pet a wolf at Wolf Creek Habitat

Indiana – Pet a wolf at Wolf Creek Habitat

So, you want to meet some wolves. The logical place to go is southern Indiana, right? Right!

Wolf Creek Habitat Brookville Indiana

Wolf Creek Habitat was established in 2000 by Terry and Kathy Baudendistel when they established their first pack of wolf-dog hybrids. They were motivated by the knowledge that so many were being put down because many people couldn’t handle them as pets. They built the rescue facility on their property in Brookville, Indiana. By 2003 they had decided to focus only on pure wolves and after five years, they opened their doors to the public. Wolf Creek Habitat is currently home to 40 wolves living in packs of two or more, each pack with its own enclosure.

Wolf Enclosure

Wolf Creek continues to rescue wolf cubs four months old or younger. Older wolves are much harder to assimilate into an existing pack. Wolf Creek also breeds wolf cubs to be sent to other educational facilities.

Wolf Cub - Wolf Creek Habitat

Wolf Creek Habitat is open every weekend for wolf viewing, but be aware that the wolves are not very active when the temperature is very hot. A raised platform provides an excellent view of several of the enclosures.  Often the wolves come out to greet their visitors, but sometimes they are a little shy. Occasionally, the staff will give visitors marshmallows to toss to the wolves in order to entice them to come out. Who knew wolves had a sweet tooth?

Wolves with a sweet tooth

While there is no cost to simply view the wolves, donations are always appreciated to help defray the cost of feeding the wolves.

Wolf at Wolf Creek Habitat

After you’ve had a chance to view the wolves, decide if you’re ready for a closer encounter.  Weekend wolf interactions are not scheduled in advance.  Just let a staff member know that you’d like to do an interaction, pay the $50 fee, and sign the disclaimer form. You might want to read this letter from the wolves also.

Letter from the wolves at Wolf Creek Habitat

Children must be at least 5 ft. tall in order to interact with the wolves. They are very conscientious about visitor safety and will not permit anyone in the enclosure who they feel is at risk.  Wolf interactions are done only with wolves that were bottle-fed and socialized from an early age. While they are unable to guarantee anyone’s safety around these wild animals, in all of their years of operation, no visitor has ever been bitten.

Wolf Encounter at Wolf Creek Habitat

Interacting with the wolves is an amazing experience.  At first, staff members give the wolves some time to become acquainted with the visitors, and then they will encourage petting.

Petting a wolf at Wolf Creek Habitat

Expect to receive some “wolfy kisses” and for the wolves to rub up against you.

Wolfy kisses at Wolf Creek Habitat

When the wolves are shedding their winter coats, they may allow you to help pull off some fur.

Pulling fur off a wolf at Wolf Creek Habitat

You might even forget that these are wolves and think you are playing with large dogs.

Playing with wolves at Wolf Creek Habitat

Playing with a wolf at Wolf Creek Habitat

If you plan to interact with the wolves, plan ahead and dress appropriately.  Wear clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty:  long pants, close-toed shoes, and nothing with fringe or anything the wolves could grab.  It is best not to wear hair in a ponytail because the wolves might mistake it for a toy and tug it.

Wolves playing with hair at Wolf Creek Habitat

Cell phones are permitted in the enclosure, but they won’t allow you to risk having your expensive cameras broken by the wolves.

Wolf closeup at Wolf Creek Habitat

During our visit, we experienced a rather rare treat: playing with wolf cubs. These cubs were about three months old at the time.

Holding a wolf cub

These rambunctious cubs acted just like you would expect a puppy to act.

Playing with wolf cubs at Wolf Creek Habitat

They jumped all over us, licked us, scratched us, and tried to chew pant legs and everything else.

Wolf cub trying to chew hand

So, we got a few scratches, but nothing major. It was absolutely worth it to play with these adorable babies. Who could resist a face like this?

Wolf baby face

After a while they settled down a little.  My daughters have a way with animals and the wolf babies liked having them rub their bellies.

Wolf pups at Wolf Creek Habitat

Playing with wolf puppies

Before you leave, browse the unique items in the gift shop. All purchases help to support the care and feeding of the wolves.

Our group at Wolf Creek Habitat

Ready to visit?

Wolf Creek Habitat
14099 Wolf Creek Road
Brookville, IN  47012
(513) 312-9143

October–April
Saturday and Sunday:  11 a.m.–4 p.m.

May–September
Saturday and Sunday:  10 a.m.–4 p.m.; they close at 2 p.m. if it is too warm for the wolves

Donations appreciated to cover the cost of food
Wolf viewing: free
Wolf Interactions:  $50 donation per person; will visit three packs

Howlin’ at the Habitat event is held the second Friday of each month from 6 – 9 p.m. $35