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Wolf Handling and Chemical Immobilization

A Three-Day Seminar that Includes Daily Labs and Hands-On Participation in an Annual Veterinary Examination of Captive Wild Wolves

Staci Janusz

Photo Credit: Staci Janusz

Instructor: Norm Switzer, DVM, California Wolf Center
Location: California Wolf Center, Julian, California
Dates: January 2019- The 2019 course is sold out. Please stay tuned for details about future course offerings.
Price: $625
Audience: Wildlife (field & captive) personnel, veterinarians and vet technicians, field biologists, animal control professionals, and students, including personnel from zoos, captive breeding facilities, and national and state parks


This three-day classroom and hands-on lab experience addresses all aspects of the capture and handling of captive and free-ranging wildlife. The materials and concepts are applicable to a broad array of animal handling situations.

Participants will gain invaluable experience through extensive laboratory work and field practice. Each day includes a hands-on lab, and the entire third day is devoted to working with veterinarians conducting an annual veterinary examination of captive non-tame wolves.

The seminar will also increase the ability of participants to capture escaped animals and to safely contain and potentially evacuate animals in the event of emergencies.

Topic Outline

  • Physical restraint techniques
  • Drugs and drug delivery systems for captive animals
  • Assessing animal health and anesthetic depth
  • Individual animal identification systems (ear tagging, tattoos, PIT tags)
  • Blood and data collection and documentation practices
  • Legal responsibilities (documentation and storage) associated with chemical immobilizations
  • Preparing for planned capture and handling events

Hands-On Labs

  • Administering drugs
  • Practice drug delivery systems
  • Monitoring temperature, pulse, and respiration
  • Chemically immobilizing and restraining wolves
  • Handling wolves during annual wolf veterinary check-up

About the California Wolf Center

The California Wolf Center is a 501 (c)(3) California non-profit organization. The Center presents education programs each week about wolves and their ecosystems and participates in the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan.

Course Logistics

Location: The California Wolf Center is in Julian, about 60 miles east of downtown San Diego. All course participants are responsible for their own transportation and accommodations. Out of town participants should fly into San Diego's Lindbergh Field. Registrants will receive (mid December) a detailed information package that includes directions to the Center and a list of hotel accommodations.

Date: January 2019 The 2019 course is sold out. Please stay tuned for details about future course offerings.

Cancellation Refund Policy: Cancellation on or before December 31, 2018 guarantees a 50% refund. No refunds will be given for cancellations made on or after January 1, 2019.

For More Information

For information about whether this seminar fits your needs, please call 760-765-0030 or email .

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