Wolf dog refuge in N.H. spared

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CHATHAM, N.H. – Fire burned 10 acres of land in this town north of Conway late Wednesday, but the flames never made it to a nearby wildlife refuge where 100 wolf dogs are kept in pens.

Fred Keating, founder of the Loki Wolf Refuge on Robbins Hill Road, said Thursday that the blaze didn’t reach his property, as he had feared the night before.

“The wind shifted and it blew the fire toward the mountains rather than at us,” Keating said.

Firefighters from several departments battled the late night blaze and had it under control by early Thursday morning.

The fire in Chatham was one of several that burned through New Hampshire and Maine this week. It was believed to have been started by a power line that was blown down in Wednesday’s strong winds.

Keating, who has 100 acres for his wolf dog crossbreeds, spent a late night worrying about his animals as flames from the grass fire spread to within a quarter mile of his property.

The wolf dogs, on the other hand, did not appear to be disturbed by the fire and commotion.

“They were actually very quiet,” Keating said.

In the 1980s, he began breeding wolf dogs on his property before realizing that few people knew enough about the animals to raise them. In 1989, he stopped breeding them and instead set up a refuge for wolf dogs that had been abandoned.

Now with extra land donated to him, Keating plans to build up to 200 pens for more animals and to set up the refuge as an educational facility.

More about the wolf refuge may be found on the Web at www.canineworld.com/lokiclan.

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