Tony The Truck Stop Tiger
by, 02.28.2010 at 08.20 PM (355 Views)
Tony The Truck Stop Tiger
Tony is a nine year old Siberian/Bengal tiger who has lived his whole life at a truck stop in Grosse Tete Louisiana. His home is one of concrete and steel, amid the noise and fumes of cars and trucks 24 hours a day. It is angering as well as sad to see this majestic cat pacing back and forth in his steel prison with people staring at and taunting him constantly. A sign is even posted to remind people not to throw things at him.
Clearly this is a blatant case of animal abuse, neglect and exploitation, as well as it being illegal. A 1993 Iberville Parish County ordinance prohibits the display of wild exotic animals, and wild or exotic animals as pets, but this law was never enforced and unfortunately was amended at the last council meeting on March 17th 2009. http://savethetigers62.blogspot.com/2009/03/truck-stop-tiger-approved-with-some.html
View the ordinance at: http://tinyurl.com/yl5kaxl
It has been over seven months since the Iberville Parish Council allowed this display of animal exploitation to continue. Supposedly there were requirements in the ordinance for improvements to be made to Tony’s enclosure. No matter what improvements are made, this is an unsuitable and unhealthy environment for Tony as well as a danger to the public.
UPDATE: LDW&F GRANTS PERMIT: http://freetonythetiger.wordpress.com/ldwf-grants-permit-to-tiger-truck-stop-12-29-2009/
Tony is displayed and exploited 24 hours a day in deplorable conditions amid the fumes and noise of trucks and cars. If Tony’s owner truly cared about him and the quality of his life, he would relinquish him to an accredited big cat sanctuary such as Big Cat Rescue, where professionals would provide him with a natural habitat, medical care, a proper diet and enrichment.
Tigers ARE NOT PETS or “part of the family” as his owner Mr. Sandlin erroneously believes. Tigers are the largest members of the cat family and are apex predators. In the wild their territory can range from 10 to 30 square miles while the Siberian tiger’s range may be as large as 120 square miles.
It is very hard for me to believe that individuals see nothing wrong with having a tiger as a pet or roadside attraction. It is inhumane, disgraceful and clearly shows the greed and extent people will go to at the expense of an animal.
There has been an ongoing movement by those of us who care about Tony and want to see him removed from the truck stop and placed in an accredited sanctuary, Big Cat Rescue http://www.bigcatrescue.org Those of us who support the removal of Tony from the truck stop want nothing more than for this beautiful majestic cat to have a peaceful, clean, safe home in a natural habitat while being cared for with respect and professionalism.
I have visited Big Cat Rescue and witnessed first-hand what an extremely well-run and well-maintained sanctuary it is. The constant thought in my mind while I was there was what a wonderful home it would be for Tony. The tigers at Big Cat Rescue have spacious natural habitats, with dirt, grass, trees, logs, dens, and pools. They receive enrichment and quality food and medical care. The Big Cat Rescue staff is dedicated to providing the best home possible for these cats.
Tony’s life has 9 years of concrete and steel, with people gawking at him and signs necessary to remind people not to throw things at him. The constant noise and fumes of trucks and cars are what Tony hears and smells 24 hours a day. This is NO LIFE for any animal, and his owner obviously does not care.
I have been following Tony’s story religiously and it deeply disturbs, angers and saddens me to see the appalling conditions in which Tony is living in. In my eyes tigers are the most beautiful animals on earth and when I see them being mistreated, abused, neglected and exploited it truly sickens me. I love all animals, but tigers are my love, my passion.
The tiger is a fierce, beautiful, and powerful cat. They are not attractions or gimmicks. Until people respect the tiger, and better laws are passed banning private ownership, we will unfortunately continue to see such situations as Tony’s.
More about information about Tony: