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Born on April 1, 2005
Arrived at Mission: Wolf on October 20, 2005

Sex: Male
Lives with Soleil

Orion is a male black wolf, who was born in Tennessee in the spring of 2005. He came from a line of pure wolves bred in captivity. When he was only a few months old, Orion was rescued by a lady in Vermont who kept other wolf-dogs. Due to his skittish and “wolfy” behavior, Orion’s owner realized that she would not be able to socialize him and could no longer look after him. She contacted Mission: Wolf; soon after, friends of the refuge accompanied him on his flight across the country from Vermont to Denver. Staff drove to Denver and picked him up. He was named after the star constellation that was overhead when he arrived.


In the months that followed, Orion continued to be frightened of humans. He lived in our vet building with another rescued wolf puppy named Soleil. They became fast friends and have been inseparable ever since. As they grew, Orion and Soleil became very independent and kicked their surrogate dog mother, Kona, out of the pack. We tried splitting the two pups up and introducing each of them to older wolves for guidance and socialization, but Orion and Soleil would have none of it. They both rebelled against the older wolves and were only happy when they were put back together. Orion and Soliel are perhaps the most bonded couple we have living at the refuge, and are never seen more than a few feet apart.


Orion has grown into a stunning black wolf with an intense gaze and a seemingly serious demeanor. But when he doesn’t think we’re watching, Orion will twirl, pounce and tumble with Soleil and reveal his clownish side. Although he is still nervous around people, he occasionally works up the courage to sniff someone on the toe, and has become comfortable with tours passing by his enclosure.