What Is the Difference Between Tame and Domesticated?
Can You Turn a Wild Animal Into a Pet?
When I was a kid, an old man gave me a very young coyote pup that had lost his mother. He told me that if I raised him and fed him by hand, that he would be a very loyal pet. I believed him, and took the pup home with me and put him in a box next to my bed, and at times even took him to bed with me if it was very cold.
As the pup got older, I noticed that he did exhibit some behaviors that were not like any dog puppy I had ever had. No matter what I did, I could not keep him off of the top of the backs of the furniture. His favorite place to sleep was up on the highest point of any chair, or sofa. I also noticed that he was housebroken to the extent that he wanted to be. If he did go in the house, it was usually by the door, and it was only occasional.
There was something else he did that bothered me though. As I started feeding him solid foods, I gave him dog food from a can, and I would give him a bone from the butcher shop from time to time, thinking that it would be good for his teething, and would be something closer to what his mother would give him.
One day as he lay on the carpet chewing on this bone, I was going to go to my room, so I picked him and his bone up to move locations. He gave me a very swift and nasty bite. I don't know if it was because it was raw meat or not, for he never bit me with his usual dog food meal. This is when I realized that even a tamed animal, is wild by heart, and this is something that you cannot tame or train out of them.
He also resisted discipline of any sort. If I scolded him for something, like you would a dog who chewed something, or if I tried to take away something that he wanted, he would also snap at me.
It was in his nature to snap, for in the wild that is the defense against another animal taking his food away. Only the strong survive in nature. This was also the day I realized that I could not keep him as a pet, for it was unfair of me to expect him to become my pet, and it was unfair to me not to have a pet I could trust completely.
He Got To Be Brothers With Dogs
As it turned out, I found a man who raised hounds, and sold them to people who hunted. He wanted, or rather needed a coyote to raise with his puppies, so when they grew old enough to go out hunting, they would ignore the coyote scent as one that was familiar to them and only go for the deer, bear, moose, elk scents. He traded me the coyote pup for my choice of hound pups, and it worked out for the best for both of us, as the coyote seemed to be much happier with other animals, and accepted the pups as his brothers. I visited him from time to time, and he seemed to shy away from humans, but loved the dogs. The man said he got along fine, and he seemed fine. He was outdoors, and was able to act like the coyote he was.
In the end, I also had problems with the coon hound puppy that I had traded him for. The hound, as he got older, would take off following the scent of any animal he could find anytime I let him outside to do his business. I could hear him a mile or two off, out in the woods chasing deer or whatever he could find. He would not come back for a week sometimes and would be all beat up, dirty, and got thinner and thinner.
I decided this was not the dog for me either, but that is a whole different story for another time.