28 Sep 11

Howling in Hauppauge! ...

by Nancy E. Hassel, LIPetPlace.com

When you think of Long Island, the first animal that comes to mind is definitely not a Wolf, unless of course you are Teresa DeMaio the Founder and President of Running with the Wolves, Inc. (RWTW).  RWTW will be hosting the 8th Annual Long Island Wolf Expo this Sunday, October 2nd at the Sheraton in Hauppauge from 10am to 4:30pm.

Teresa founded RWTW over 10 years ago, which is a wildlife educational organization that teaches workshops about wolves and other wildlife.  Teresa started the annual wolf expo to raise funds for the Loki Clan Wolf Refuge Center in New Hampshire.  Loki is a place where rescued wolves and wolf dogs can live out their lives in the setting they require.  “I supported them via personal donations and then I thought it would be a great idea to have a Wolf Expo, so I could be able to have much better funding to send to them.  Our 1st Wolf Expo was so successful we continued to away to lend a hand to Loki Clan Wolf Refuge and other wolf sanctuaries we support,” said Teresa.

The Wolf Expo is about wolves, but Teresa has partnered with other wildlife rescue organizations and there will be many different wildlife exhibits and demos at the expo.  People can expect to see, well wolves of course, birds of prey, prairie dogs, desert foxes, reptiles, and a lot of other small wildlife and a beautiful Husky named Astra from Husky House rescue.  Children and adults will get to learn about the wolves and wildlife there, how they can help to protect them and support them.  Education is very important to Teresa and the other organizations there, so people will not only leave in awe of the wildlife they just witnessed in person, but also to have a new awareness about the wildlife too.

When asked, what drives you to continue your work, Teresa responded, “because of my sheer love and passion for wolves and to help educate the public about them.”  Teresa also said, “The most important part of my work is about conservation and teaching about the major role wolves have in our ecosystem.  We strive to teach the public that wolves or wolf dogs do not make good pets. Our belief is that wolves should never be pets. It’s their birthright to live in the wild.”

Teresa works closely with the STAR Foundation, located in Middle Island, which is a federally and state licensed rehab center for all kinds of wildlife from birds of prey, foxes, coyotes, farm animals and wolves.

Working also with many different wildlife rescue organizations that house wolves, Teresa gets to work with them hands on for socialization, feeding, ‘discovery time,’  this is where a wolf can be a wolf – spending much of their time running, playing and just being free.  There’s so much to learn about their behavior and habits, they change so often.  Teresa gets to work with them on a weekly basis and she finds it very rewarding, “they love to have visitors,” said Teresa.  But let’s be clear, Teresa does not own a wolf, nor have a wolf living in her house – she is happy to cuddle with her dogs, you can’t cuddle with a wolf – they are still wild.

For a full schedule of the expo click here.

Comments are closed.