It’s hard to forget the whole alpha, beta, omega terminology when it comes to wolves. But that terminology comes from wolves being studied in captivity and not in the wild. In the wild, wolf packs are families. The leaders are Mom and Dad who are adults and get to do what they want, including pee on trees together. There may be an older sister or an aunt who sticks around to help feed the puppies when they’re small. The older children sometimes lead the hunt because hey, they have to learn responsibility too! And the brothers, they fight over who gets to babysit the younger puppies. The younger puppies like to play with everybody. And yeah, siblings like to fight and sometimes one sibling takes it upon themselves to be the peacemaker. But when they’re all grown up, they take off to start families of their own sometimes traveling up to 400 miles. Then they’ll have reunions at territory boundaries just to sniff each other and howl.
This is the approach I tried to remember when writing The Lone Prospect. Wolf packs are families with siblings that squabble. Hopefully, it added a different dynamic and made the book a fun read.
(really I wanted an excuse to post this awesome wolf wallpaper)