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Have you ever wanted to get up close and personal with wolves? The Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary offers this exciting experience in Navasota, Texas just a short drive from Houston.

A nonprofit charity, it rescues and provides homes to wolves and wolf-hybrid dogs that are no longer able to be released into the wild. The organization has been in operation for nearly two decades, starting with a wolf named Mystery, one of many animals that lived at the North American Wolf Association in Conroe, Texas where they were kept in substandard conditions, malnourished, and denied essential vaccinations. Mystery escaped in the summer of 2002 and ultimately sparked the birth of the Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary to provide her with the love and care she needed.

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Wolf at Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary, Navasota, Texas
Wolf at Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary, Navasota, Texas

Guided walking tours are available at the wolf sanctuary, giving visitors the opportunity to learn about the history of the animals.

It recently moved from its original location in Montgomery to a more updated facility in Navasota 15 minutes away, with new in-ground dens and water features. It will host a Grand Opening on July 11th. Note that due to COVID-19, only 150 people will be allowed onto the new site over the course of three guided tours, each including up to 50 people at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 5 p.m.

Alex at the St. Francis Wolf Sanctuary
Alex at the St. Francis Wolf Sanctuary

Aside from the Grand Opening tours, a variety of tours are typically available, including the main Sanctuary Tour where you can see the animals, hear about their stories and learn more about wolves and wolfdogs in captivity and in the wild.

VIP tours offer a “behind the scenes” look as well as the chance to assist keepers in preparing the animals’ meals, viewing them up close and learning their stories. Howl Night & Camping with the Wolves events bring an evening around the campfire with snacks and drinks, an in-depth discussion on wolves, and perhaps hearing the pack howl.

Meeko at Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary
Meeko at Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary

Appointments are required in order to visit and can be booked on an online booking page here.

The basic sanctuary tours are $10 per person, with children five years of age and younger free. The first Tuesday of every month is Discount Day with tickets at $7 per person.

VIP Tours range from $100 to $175 for adults depending on the day of the week, with discounted rates for children. Howl Night events, held twice a month, are $30 for adults and $20 for children aged 17 and under, teachers, and military or service personnel.

Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary
Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary

There are current 12 beautiful animals housed at the sanctuary – you can get to know them online before visiting, with all of their bios and photos available here.

Even if you can’t visit Saint Francis always welcomes donations, and by checking out its website you’ll find more ways to help out this great cause.

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