Image: FB/WolfWatchUK

Meet Madadh, the oldest known wolf in the world.

While the average wolf in the wild lives to only 8 and those in captivity rarely make it to 14, this female has overcome the odds and is thriving in her 19th year.

Madadh, also known as “Maddie,” is a captive and well-socialized Canadian wolf who arrived at WolfWatchUK Wolf Rescue & Sanctuary with her brother at just 8 days old. Her first couple of months at the sanctuary were certainly a labor of love — she had to be bottle fed every 2 hours by committed WolfWatchUK Founder Tony Haighway.

Unlike most wolves, it’s clear that Maddie is comfortable around humans. When asked about her fondness for people, Haighway explained, “From 8 days old, she slept in a sleeping bag with me in the kitchen.. for the first two months of her life. Then she went into a nursery at the back of the house with [her brother] Kgosi .. We were spending probably 12 hours a day with her. Hence she remains well socialized to people in general, but to me in particular.”

His dedication has certainly paid off.  Hand-reared and given the run of 2.5 beautiful forested acres, this wolf has undoubtedly enjoyed her long life.

WolfWatchUK is the only sanctuary in the United Kingdom that actively rescues wolves.  The organization states on its website, “Our wolves normally arrive here as a consequence of: dominance fights, zoo closures or excess breeding. Without our help many of these magnificent animals would have probably been euthanized.”