Welcome Tito!

Sweet, inquisitive, charming, patient, caretaker, leader, and protector.  This is Tito.


Tito is one of the lucky ones; he was raised in a sanctuary.  Found as a chick in Sunnyside with his siblings and mother, Tito and his family were rescued and went to live at Blackbird Ranch and Farm Sanctuary in Pullman, WA.  After a year, Tito and three of his brothers moved to Noble Animals Sanctuary in the spring of 2019, and in September 2020, we adopted him.

I was volunteering at Noble when Tito and his brothers arrived.  Over the coming year, I came to know Tito really well.  He happily gave me his treats and danced for me – that is until Noble adopted hens Florence and Sally Sue, providing Tito with a feathered family of hens.  Tito now has a family to care for and protect but we still remained close with trust between us. 

A strong will to live

Although Tito has always lived in a sanctuary environment, he is lucky to be alive.  In September 2020, Tito suddenly became extremely ill and was deteriorating quickly.  He was very lethargic and his comb was fallen and darkening.  I picked him up from Noble and rushed him to a local vet who gave him antibiotics, but still didn’t know what was wrong.  Given the lack of diagnosis, I brought Tito to Tumbleweed and kept close watch.  Within 45 minutes of being home, I quickly realized that Tito couldn’t swallow water.  Soon after, as I held him, I thought he’d died in my arms.  My tears landed on his beautiful feathers as his body lay limp cradled in my arms.  But our Tito is a survivor. 

After 15 or 20 seconds – it seemed like forever – Tito cracked open his eyes and moved a little.  I immediately rushed him to the local emergency hospital.  Although they didn’t have experience with chickens, they saved his life that night.  The vet found his airway was clogged with infection and removed as much as she could.

Tito came home that night and was finally able to drink some water.  He was stable throughout the night but started to go downhill the next day.  Tito spent that night in the isolation ward at WSU Veterinary college with suspected fowl pox.  The veterinarian was “cautiously optimistic” that he would survive.  Three days later, Tito came home. 

Netflix is not just for humans

We never were able to confirm a diagnosis but given the risk of fowl pox, which is a highly contagious disease, Tito remained at Tumbleweed, in quarantine, like much of the rest of the world.  And like the rest of us in quarantine, Tito watched shows on Netflix.  As he recovered and we waited out any potential remaining virus in his system, I formally adopted Tito.  I convert the shed into a coop making a safe and enjoyable home for Tito and his family, Florence and Sally Sue, who we also adopted from Noble.