Wild wolves (Canis lupus) that had produced pups in earlier years but were not currently pregnant, and ovariectomized captive wolves, dug dens during and after the whelping season even though they produced no pups. These observations suggest that den digging is not a function of pregnancy or of ovarian estrogen or progesterone. We hypothesize that increasing prolactin in spring elicits or mediates den-digging behavior.
Additional publication details
Denning behaviour of non-gravid wolves, Canis lupus