This video will almost certainly melt your heart on first observation. These Yellowstone wolves were filmed bringing “toys” for their pups back to their dens.
The reality of the situation is a bit sadder, as the adult wolves aren’t really worried about keeping their children entertained as they are keeping their children distracted from the lack of food. The Yellowstone wolves are likely just reacting to instinct, knowing that, in the absence of food, they still need to bring something back to their den. It could also be a way of preventing the adult wolves from being attacked by sharp puppy teeth when they return.
“Yellowstone wolf packs typically have one litter of 4 to 5 pups each year. By late October, pups are two-thirds of their adult size and start traveling with the pack. Pups that survive the winter have learned to help the pack hunt large prey like elk and bison and will help raise the pack’s next litter of pups—delivering food, and sometimes toys.“
Image Credit: Yellowstone National Park