Tien is leaving us today. His cancer became too much for his body
to handle.

Tien is the only wolf in the world that could change the mind of the coldest hunter. He loves and greets every person that has walked through the Sanctuary. When you’re sad, he lets you lay your head down on his belly. When you’re angry, he gently places a paw on your arm to calm you down. When you’re happy, he shares in your joys with kisses. . . and he is always ready for a good belly rub.

Tien was my best friend. He was the best friend to many at the Sanctuary. He was an ambassador for Shy Wolf and has touched the lives of thousands of people during his lifetime. We love, love, love you, Tien. You will always be in our hearts.


Tien means “Heaven” in Chinese and “Sky” in Mandarin. He was one of three pups seized by Fish & Wildlife Commission at three weeks of age. FWC had been called to a private licensee’s property to investigate a complaint of dead and dying animals. They did find a deceased wolf in an enclosure and instructed the woman to remove the body and clean up the property. Thirty days later they returned to check out the situation…only to find three pups in a den in neglectful conditions. The pups were turned over to FWC and brought to Shy Wolf Sanctuary. They were inbred, accidentally due to fencing damage, and it is unknown whether the mother’s father or brother is the sire.

Tien was born grey, unusual as most wild wolves are born darker and become lighter. His brother Chocowa was white and sister, Indy, was black. All three nearly died several times due to the problems they came with: coccidia, staph, ringworm and hookworms. They required daily IV fluids and daily ringworm baths. Tien is very outgoing and will greet any stranger willingly. Chocowa will warm up to new people quickly but isn’t as outgoing as Tien. Indy w ants nothing to do with new people until she has seen them around for a while and knows they mean no harm.

The three pups were initially put in with Wenatchee and Julie. We decided to move Tien and Indy into their own enclosure after a while. Moving Tie n and Indy allowed him to greet guests as he enjoys without suffering repercussions and allowed Indy to grow into herself and quit looking over her shoulder every minute, as she was no longer the omega in a bigger pack.

Anyone who meets Tien and receives some of his “wolf kisses” may think they’ve died and gone to heaven…some feel that way by simply gazing into his wise and knowing eyes.

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