The hierarchy that exists within each pack is maintained by dominant or submissive body posturing, and by other behaviour patterns such as the communal care of the young.

Wolf packs are established according to a strict hierarchy, with a dominant alpha male at the top and alpha female not far behind. Usually this male and female are the only animals of the pack to breed. Packs consist of between five and ten animals – usually offspring from several years. All of a pack’s adults help to care for young pups by bringing them food and watching them while others hunt.

These social animals cooperate on their preferred prey. A single wolf is capable of catching and killing a deer unaided but when hunting as a pack it preys on much larger animals such as deer, elk, and moose. Wolves also eat smaller mammals, birds, fish, lizards, snakes, and fruit.

Wolves are legendary because of their spine-tingling howl, which they use to communicate. A lone wolf howls to attract the attention of his pack, while communal howls may send territorial messages from one pack to another. Some howls are confrontational. Calls may be answered by rival packs. Much like barking domestic dogs, wolves may simply begin howling because a nearby wolf has already begun.