Didn't post this yesterday because I wasn't 100% sure, but after a bit of local research it seems it was indeed a wolf. My first live, real, wild wolf spotting. About 4KM north of Cubo del Vino the track follows fairly dense woodland to the right and fields of corn to the left and there are wolves in the woods. Apparently local farmers aren't happy. As well as controlled, licenced culls many wolves are hunted illegally.
Thanks again for comments. I agree that Zamora has a very unique charm. What makes it very different in atmosphere for me is that there isn't an overbearing cathedral presence. As beautiful as cities like Salamanca are, there is no getting away from the ostentatious display of wealth and power from the state and church. Zamora has many small churches and a cathedral, but the cathedral's location doesn't impose on the rest of the town and the churches are all small, old and very pretty rather than dominating edificies designed to impose on everything around them. I like Zamora, but I don't think any city in Spain I come across will quite do for me what Granada does for me. Pretty sure I know what I'm going to do when I eventually return.
I've taken a €60 gamble and booked into a hotel for a couple of nights. It's wet now, but the forecast is good. A couple of hours sketching yesterday returned €40. I'm sure I can do that again today and take €100 or so over the weekend. Today will mostly be spent in the dry warm library researching pilgrimage and pilgrim routes. The one thought occupying my mind much of the time during lonely hiking stretches is why? Why did they do it? Beyond all the romance that religion plasters history with, I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that pilgrimage was nothing more than a glamorised recruitment campaign for the crusades. A young Mozarabe man feeling a bit oppressed by the Moorish regime may set off to the lands of hope and Christian rule from the south, but what does he do once he gets there? Toughened up and fit for a fight I reckon he simply joins one of the many mercenary armies fighting for the Pope, or the King. Good pay and it's one way home at least!
Slight change of plan. Taking a more careful look at the map it makes sense for me to continue walking to Ponferrada before breaking to visit friends and places of interest in the mountains. So, about another weeks hiking ahead of me. Pretty sure Ponferrada and Astorga can bring in a bit of cash and there are cheap albergues to make use of in both.
Thanks to Tammo in Granada for the comments. I'm managing to maintain a very healthy float now, but things may have been very different without the generous donation to get started.