HOWL Colorado

New Hampshire wolf refuge in transition

CONWAY — A very public dispute over the founder of Loki Clan Wolf Refuge in Chatham has the organization looking to reassure its supporters. Friends and supporters of Fred Keating, meanwhile, are vocally protesting his ouster.The Loki Clan Wolf Refuge sits on 70 acres in Evans Notch straddling the Maine/New Hampshire border. It is dedicated to wolves and wolf-hybrids, providing them a place to live and run. Wolf-hybrids are unlike normal dogs, but people often get them as pets without understanding their wild nature. In many states the only option for someone looking to get rid of one of these animals is to kill it.

In 1993 Fred Keating, who both friends and opponents describe as a force of nature, started the organization after a refuge he’d set up in his backyard outgrew itself. The refuge got support from members of the community who provided Keating and his packs with land, and for the next 18 years Keating lived just outside the fences that held in the wolves and wolf-dogs.

Late last year, however, the board ousted Keating, citing struggles with the U.S. Department of Agriculture that go back to the late 1990s, as well as financial mismanagement.

“Even if we wanted him to stay it wasn’t an option,” said Marianne Finney, the president of the Loki Clan board. The USDA wanted Keating gone…

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