Monday, December 29, 2008

Tiger sleeps after lethal lunge

Tiger sleeps after lethal lunge

Issue Date: Monday , December 29 , 2008

Kultali/Calcutta, Dec. 28: A tranquilliser bullet in its body, a Sunderbans tiger pounced seven feet to land on a forest officer who had shot at it and the two plunged into a pond.

Swatting away Krishnapada Mondal, the 150kg animal hurried out of the water, darted into an adjacent hut and passed out.

The big cat had strayed into Kantamari village at Sankijahan, about 210km from Calcutta, early this morning.

Mondal, 58, a veteran of the Sunderbans, was thanking his survival instincts while recounting his two-minute tryst with the tiger. “I was trying to protect my neck and shoulder and move away from the animal all the while,” he said from his bed at SSKM Hospital.

He has been to “20 such assignments” before. “But never have I came so close to a tiger,” said the deputy ranger.

Clawed and slapped by the wounded giant, Mondal followed it to the residence of Sridhar Betal, where the tiger pa- ssed out because of the sedative. A team of 18 forest officials carried the animal away around 12.30pm.

Mondal got a call after the tiger injured Usharani Sardar, 12, who was on her way to a field with her sister-in-law to cut hay.

“The tiger was hiding behind a bush and it pounced on me and caught my thighs. I cried for help, but it held onto my thighs and clawed my hands,” she said at SSKM.

Her cousin Sudip, 25, dragged her out as the tiger loosened its jaws.

After sending Usha to the health centre, the villagers found the animal behind a banana grove. They surrounded the area with sticks and laid nylon nets so it could not es- cape. That is where the tiger stayed put until Mondal and his men arrived.

Hospital sources said both Mondal and Sardar had multiple injuries but their condition was stable.

Divisional forest officer Shubhendu Banerjee said the animal had apparently entered the village, after crossing a tributary of the Matla, in search of food. The tiger might be released after vets observe it for a day.

http://www.telegraphindia.com/1081229/jsp/bengal/story_10314820.jsp#

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Statue of SF tiger dedicated on one-year anniversary of Attack

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS/BCN) -- A statue of the tiger who escaped her cage from the San Francisco Zoo and killed a San Jose teenager was dedicated Thursday on the one-year anniversary of her escape.

On the Greenwich Steps of San Francisco’s Telegraph Hill, a small group of people gathered to view the statue of Tatiana the tiger that stands gazing out over the trees and into the San Francisco Bay.

Jon Engdahl, an artists and sculptor from San Francisco, is an animal lover. He says that he made the statue to honor the memory of her life.

“My aim is to strictly remember Tatiana and remember a life cut short of this magnificent animal… the most beautiful of the animal kingdom,” said Engdahl.

ListenKCBS' Tim Ryan reports

Earlier this week, the family of the San Jose teen that was fatally mauled Tatiana filed a civil lawsuit against the zoo.

Marilza and Carlos Sousa filed a wrongful death suit in state court today, claiming the tiger enclosure was lower than the recommended national standard. They also claimed in the suit that officials ignored warnings by zoo employees who believed the wall was not tall enough.

Their son, 17-year-old Carlos Sousa Jr., was killed last Christmas when a Siberian tiger escaped its enclosure. The tiger also attacked two brothers, Kulbir and Amritpal Dhaliwal, who survived. They filed a similar lawsuit last month.

The zoo was closed this year on Christmas Day in remembrance of the tragedy.

http://www.kcbs.com/Statue-of-Tiger-Dedicated-One-Year-After-Attack/3557045

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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Tiger kills another woman in Vidarbha

Tiger kills another woman in Vidarbha

Vivek Deshpande
Posted: Dec 24, 2008 at 0018 hrs IST

With the state Assembly already seeing a heated debate on man-animal conflicts in Vidarbha, a tiger death was on Tuesday reported from Chandrapur, taking the toll to four in 25 days.

A 35-year-old woman who had gone inside the forest, about 5 km from Chandrapur city, to collect firewood was attacked by a tiger and killed. There were seven-eight more women with her at the time.

This is the same area where a leopard family had created terror, killing three persons and injuring five, a few months ago. A tiger family has been known to be roaming the area for some time, but an attack hasn’t been reported before. With the area chosen for mining of coal for an Adani group project, the Forest Department is worried that the decreasing forest cover might worsen the man-animal conflict.

Twenty-two people have died in animal attacks this year, almost double the toll for the last two years. In the past 25 days alone, there have been four incidents apart from the one reported on Tuesday. While a woman was killed in a tiger attack near Chandrapur on November 29, two women were killed by leopards in Mul tahsil on December 14 and 18. A desperate Forest Department has even started booking people who venture deep inside the forest despite warnings of possible tiger or leopard attacks in North Chandrapur division.


http://www.indianexpress.com/news/tiger-kills-another-woman-in-vidarbha/402141/

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Two injured in tiger attack

Two injured in tiger attack

December 26,2008 Source: PTI

Aurangabad, Dec 26 (PTI) Two villagers were seriously injured after they were attacked by a tiger at Talegaon in Bhokardan tehsil in Jalna today, police said.

According to the police, a villager identified as Irfan Sando Khan Pathan, 26, was attacked by the big cat while he was at the weekly market in village outskirts.

Pathan, however, managed to escape and the tiger too fled the spot.

Later, the tiger strayed into nearby fields and attacked another villager Gangadhar Ratan.

Both the villagers have sustained serious injuries in the attack and they were admitted in rural health centre, from where they were shifted to Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) Aurangabad. There condition is reported to be stable.

http://www.indopia.in/India-usa-uk-news/latest-news/461886/National/1/20/1

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Family of boy mauled by S.F. tiger files suit

NBCBayArea.com
updated 21 minutes ago

The parents of a 17-year-old killed in a tiger attack at the San Francisco Zoo last Christmas sued the city and the zoo Tuesday.

Marilza and Carlos Sousa filed a wrongful death suit Tuesday in San Francisco Superior Court almost a year after Carlos Sousa Jr. was killed when a Siberian tiger escaped its enclosure.

The suit claims the enclosure's wall was lower than the recommended national standard and alleges zoo officials ignored employees' warnings that the wall was not tall enough. The family is seeking unspecified damages.

Their lawyer, Michael Cardoza, said the family hopes they can reach a settlement with the zoo. "It will never bring total closure to this, but it will begin their healing process because they won't have to relive this again through a lawsuit," he said.

The 243-pound tiger, Tatiana, also injured the San Jose teenager's two friends, Kulbir and Paul Dhaliwal, before police shot the animal dead.

Matt Dorsey, a spokesman for City Attorney Dennis Herrera, said Tuesday the city's agreements with the nonprofit San Francisco Zoological Society mean the zoo must decide whether to settle.

"We do hope that all of the parties involved in the case can reach a just resolution," Dorsey said. "We also recognize what a difficult tragedy this has been for the Sousa family and our hearts go out to them."

Lora LaMarca, a zoo spokeswoman, said Tuesday the zoo had not seen yet the suit and declined to comment on pending litigation.

The Dhaliwals filed a federal lawsuit last month against the police department, the zoo and a public relations firm hired by the zoo in the days after the attack. The brothers claim the zoo started a smear campaign against them.

San Francisco police spent more than a month investigating the maulings while weighing whether to seek criminal charges against the Dhaliwals. In January, the lead investigator said the tiger "may have been taunted/agitated by its eventual victims," but the department suspended its investigation without recommending any charges.

The zoo will be closed this year on Christmas Day in remembrance of the tragedy.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28357674/

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Cervical spine injury: Tiger attack

http://www.orthosupersite.com/view.asp?rid=32931

Cervical Spine Injury: Tiger Attack

By Meredith Anderson, MD; Philip Utter, MD; Jan Szatkowski, MD; Todd Patrick, MD; William Duncan, MD; Norman Turner, MD; Mark Dekutoski, MD
ORTHOPEDICS 2008; 31:1

December 2008

Severe soft tissue damage related to open cervical spine fractures caused by animal attacks can impair the vascularization of bone and surrounding tissues. In addition to the primary stabilization, open wound treatment with local or free muscle flaps becomes an essential part of therapy as well as the use of autogenous cancellous bone. Furthermore, animal bites from large animals are associated with and are prone to infection in 10% to 20% of cases.1 Most infections are polymicrobial, with Pasteurella multicida being the most common isolate.2,3 Other aerobic bacteria include Staphyloccocus and Streptococcus viridans.4 Animal bites also mandate consideration of tetanus and rabies prophylaxis. The decision to administer postexposure rabies prophylaxis is dependent on the type of animal that is involved, whether the exposure was provoked, the local epidemiology of rabies, and the availability of the animal for observation or testing.

Assessment of patients with cervical spine injury from animal attacks requires knowledge of possible associated injuries. Evaluation of these patients involves assessment of plain radiographs and computed tomography (CT) for evaluation of the cervical spine for bony injury. Furthermore, computed angiography is advantageous to noninvasively evaluate carotid or vertebral artery injury at the same setting in patients with deep cervical puncture wounds.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is logistically difficult in trauma but provides the best assessment of soft tissue abnormalities such as the disk, ligament, and spinal cord to compliment the bony pathology provided by CT. Magnetic response angiography also provides an excellent assessment of dissection and mural hematomas. Many safety consideration arise when attempting to use MRI in trauma due to the extensive monitoring and intensive support required in these situations.5

Surgical treatment of unstable cervical spine fractures with lateral mass screw and rod fixation has been reported in the literature to have superior biomechanical properties compared to anterior and posterior instrumentation and fusion.3,6 In recent clinical studies, the use of lateral mass screws for traumatic injury of the cervical spine has been associated with excellent maintenance of alignment and minimal complications.7

Although reports of tiger attacks in the United States are rare, this article presents a case of a young woman who was violently attacked by a Siberian tiger and sustained penetrating trauma to the neck, cervical spine, and bilateral lower extremities. It also presents both diagnostic and therapeutic management of patients who may present with similar injuries.

Case Report
A 36-year-old woman presented following an attack by 2 large tigers while cleaning their cage at an exotic animal farm. The initial attack began after the tiger grabbed the woman’s legs between its jaws. A second tiger, in an attempt to rescue the attendant, grabbed the woman by the neck and carried her to the edge of the cage and left her body at the front gate.

Figure 1: Anterior neck (A), posterior neck (B), and left leg (C) wounds demonstrating significant soft tissue defect of the lateral compartment.

The patient’s neck was immobilized in a rigid cervical collar on presentation. Primary survey was conducted. She remained conscious and was able to answer question appropriately with a clear airway. On examination, she reported tenderness to cervical spine palpation. She remained immobilized in a rigid cervical collar. Three transverse lacerations located on the left anterior neck, posterior neck, and thorax were present with active bleeding (Figures 1A, B). Extensive bone and soft tissue loss was present on both lower extremities (Figure 1C). Concern of the patient’s airway led to bronchoscopic intubation.

On neurological examination, the patient had no evidence of spinal cord injury. Strength and sensation in the upper extremities were normal. The left lower extremity had decreased sensation in the superficial peroneal nerve distribution. The patient had mild ptosis of the right eye, presumably from interruption of the cervical sympathetic chain. Due to soft tissue injury, she had weakness with dorsiflexion and foot eversion in both lower extremities. The lower extremities had a palpable pulse in the posterior tibial and dorsalis pedis arteries.


Figure 2: Lateral c-spine radiograph: single portable lateral view of the upper 6 cervical vertebrae shows considerable prevertebral soft tissue swelling. There is bony deformity at the C2 and C3 levels, particularly in the posterior elements and within the body of C3 (A). Cervical spine axial CT scan: comminuted fracture of the C3 vertebral body which extends into the left posterior elements. A major fragment of the left C3 posterior elements is displaced posteriorly such that the left C2/C3 facet is locked, but the alignment of the cervical spine is essentially normal. The spinal canal is widely patent with air within the extradural portion of the spinal canal (B). Cervical spine coronal CT scan: comminuted fracture of the C2 and C3 vertebral body (C). Axial CT angiography: occlusion of the left vertebral artery (arrow; D). No evidence of extravasation.

Cross-table lateral cervical radiographs revealed a comminuted fracture of the body of C2 and C3 (Figure 2A). Computed axial tomography of the chest, cervical spine, abdomen, and pelvis revealed comminuted fractures of the body of C2/C3 with no compromise to the spinal canal (Figures 2B, 2C). Computed tomography angiography revealed a 4-cm occlusion of the left vertebral artery without evidence of active extravasation (Figure 2D). No flow was visualized within the left jugular vein below the skull base secondary to thrombosis.

The patient underwent immediate exploration of the anterior neck wound, and the lower extremity wounds were thoroughly irrigated and debrided. Cultures of soft tissue specimens grew only coagulase negative Staphylococcus from the anterior neck wound. Orthopedic infectious disease consultation recommended broad spectrum antibiotic coverage.

After review of the radiographs, consideration of the wound colonization, and discussion with infectious disease service, the decision was made by the orthopedic spine service to stabilize the patient’s cervical spine. A posterior instrumented fusion from C2 to C4 with 5 lateral mass screws was used (Figure 3A). Only decortication and local bone graft was used due to the contamination of the woundIntraoperatively, a cerebrospinal fluid leak was detected from the initial bite wound. In addition, because of the possibility of rabies infestation from the tiger bite, a rabies immunoglobin was locally applied to the open wounds and the surgical wound.

Postoperatively, the patient was placed in a cervical collar and continued on intravenous antibiotics consisting of zosyn and fluconazole for 2 months. She was deemed a poor candidate for anticoagulation treatment of the left vertebral artery occlusion. An inferior vena cava filter was placed due to her immobilization needs from the lower extremity wounds, which required multiple debridements and a subsequent free latissimus flap by plastic surgery.


Figure 3: Postoperative cervical spine radiograph: posterior fusion C2, C3, and C4 with pedicle screw and rod fixation (A). Cervical CT spine (axial) demonstrating a pseudomeningocele anterior to C3 (B). Cervical CT scan (coronal) 1-year postoperatively: bony fusion of the posterior elements of C2 to C4 (C).

Three months postoperatively she presented with difficulty swallowing, fever, and headache. A lumbar tap ruled out meningitis. A cervical angiography performed secondary to a bloody lumbar tap revealed retrograde flow down the left vertebral artery secondary to the vertebral artery occlusion at the C4 level with collateral reconstitution distally from the deep cervical artery. A cervical CT scan revealed an anterior pseudomeningocele that was aspirated with ultrasound guidance (Figure 3B). This was treated conservatively with a course of intravenous antibiotics and found to remain stable with time with gradual improvement in symptoms. The pseudomeningocele was believed to come from the previous cerebrospinal fluid leak at the time of initial injury.

Computed tomography scans of the cervical spine at 3-month follow-up demonstrated evidence of fusion and the patient was allowed to remove her cervical collar. She was allowed to return to work on a part-time basis at 6 months with a lifting restriction of 10 lbs. At 1-year follow-up, her cervical CT scan demonstrated bony fusion from C2-C4 (Figure 3C).

Discussion
Penetrating neck trauma due to tiger or animal bites poses a significant diagnostic and therapeutic challenge. These severe injuries to the neck region require diagnostic imaging to exclude injury to the carotid and vertebral artery injury.8 Conventional angiography has traditionally been considered the gold standard for evaluation of vascular injuries. The use of angiography for stable patients with penetrating neck trauma has been questioned because of its invasive nature. In recent years, there has been a renewed interest in the use of CT. This is a low-risk, noninvasive technique that is less expensive than conventional angiography. Computed tomography also has the benefit of providing information regarding the cervical spine and the aerodigestive tract.8 Prospective studies comparing CT with the gold standard of conventional arteriography have been performed. Reported sensitivity and specificity for CT was 90% and 100%; positive predictive value was 100%, and negative predictive value was 98%.8-10

Regarding surgical management for cervical trauma for injuries localized to C2 and C3, many surgeons have advocated the use of pedicle screw in C2 and C7 and lateral mass screw in the C3-C6 vertebra to reduce risk of neurovascular injury.7 Given the small size of the lateral masses in this location, there is concern regarding bony purchase. In a study by Jones et al,11 a lower load-to-failure was found for lateral mass screws compared to pedicle screws. In our patient, a posterior approach with lateral mass screw fixation was used from C2-C4. Posterior screws on the side of the uninjured artery were used despite the risk of iatrogenic injury to the vertebral artery on the uninjured side was performed because it was felt to be necessary to provide cervical stability. At 1-year follow-up, she maintained excellent alignment and bony fusion without any associated neurological complications. The patient will continue to receive close follow-up due a report published by Papadoupoulos et al12 in 1999 that describes late neurological complications due to a cord syrinx and cord tethering in a man that had bitten by a Bengal tiger in a safari park.

In addition to the primary stabilization, open wound treatment from animal bites is a potential risk for postoperative complications. Furthermore, animal bites from large animals are associated with and are prone to infection in 10% to 20% of cases.1 Most infections are polymicrobial; however, as with bite wounds from domestic cats, Pasteurella multicida is the most common isolate.2,13,14 In anticipation of a polymicrobial infection with unusual organisms, antibiotic coverage with ampicillin-sulbactam is recommended for empiric therapy.13 First generation cephalosporins, especially oral agents, are not recommended for bite wounds infected by Pasteurella multicida.15 In a previous case report published in 2002, where a 7-year-old girl was bitten by a white Siberian tiger, intraoperative cultures of the wound grew Pasteurella multicida, which fortunately was susceptible to the empiric antibiotics the patient was receiving.3 In our case, Pasteurella multicida was not isolated in the infected wound, but only coagulase negative Staphylococcus.

Animal bites also mandate consideration of tetanus and rabies prophylaxis. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the decision to administer postexposure rabies prophylaxis is dependent on the type of animal that is involved, whether the exposure was provoked, the local epidemiology of rabies, and the availability of the animal for observation or testing.16 In the previous case report published in 2002, the tiger involved in the incident was recovered and euthanized in accordance with public health recommendations and state law within 3 days of the injury and was found to be negative for rabies.13 In our case, rabies virus was considered and the immunization of the tiger was unknown to the treating physicians and the rightful owners. The owners were unwilling to provide the animal for testing purposes; therefore, the surgical team felt necessary to administer the appropriate precautions. Both active and passive vaccination was given, which consisted of rabies immunoglobins and rabies inactive vaccine.

Tigers are capable of producing serious vascular, soft tissue, and bony injuries. Polymicrobial infections with unusual organisms, especially Pasteurella multicida and rabies virus, should be anticipated and appropriate antibiotics and consultation with the guideline set by the CDC should be followed. We recommend a multidisciplinary approach to organize the proper diagnostic imaging and treatment for these patients. Furthermore, lateral mass screw fixation for cervical spine trauma is an excellent choice of fixation and is capable of sustaining adequate alignment and obtaining a bony fusion.

References
Woolfrey BF, Quall CO, Lally RT. Pasteurella multocida in an infected tiger bite. Arch Pathol Lab Med. 1985; 109(8):744-746.
Burdge DR, Scheifele D, Speert DP. Serious Pasteurella multocida infections from lion and tiger bites. JAMA. 1985; (253):3296-3297.
Do Koh Y, Lim TH, Won You J, et al. A biomechanical comparison of modern anterior and posterior plate fixation of the cervical spine. Spine. 2001; (26):15-21.
Kizer KW. Pasteurella multocida infection from a cougar bite. A review of cougar attacks. West J Med. 1989; 150(1):87-90.
Bagley LJ. Imaging of spinal trauma. Radiol Clin North Am. 2006; 44(1):1-12, vii.
Papagelopoulos PJ, Currier BL, Neale PG, et al. Biomechanical evaluation of posterior screw fixation in cadaveric cervical spines. Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2003; (411):13-24.
Pateder DB, Carbone JJ. Lateral mass screw fixation for cervical spine trauma: associated complications and efficacy in maintaining alignment. Spine J. 2006; 6(1):40-43.
Munera F, Cohn S, Rivas LA. Penetrating injuries of the neck: use of helical computed tomographic angiography. J Trauma. 2005; 58(2):413-418.
LeBlang SD, Nunez DB, Jr. Helical CT of cervical spine and soft tissue injuries of the neck. Radiol Clinc North Am. 1999; 37(3):515-532.
Munera F, Soto JA, Palacio D, et al. Diagnosis of arterial injuries caused by penetrating trauma to the neck: comparison of helical CT angiography and conventional angiography. Radiology. 2000; 216(2):356-362.
Jones EL, Heller JG, Silcox DH, Hutton WC. Cervical pedicle screws versus lateral mass screws. Anatomic feasibility and biomechanical comparison. Spine. 1997; 22(9):977-982.
Papadopoulos MC, Tubridy N, Wren D, et al. Neurological symptoms 27 years after tiger bite. J J R Soc Med. 1999; 92(6):303-304.
Capitini CM, Herrero IA, Patel R, et al. Wound infection with Neisseria weaveri and a novel subspecies of pasteurella multocida in a child who sustained a tiger bite. Clin Infect Dis. 2002; 34(12):E74-E76.
Talan DA, Citron DM, Abrahamian FM, et al. Bacteriologic analysis of infected dog and cat bites. Emergency Medicine Animal Bite Infection Study Group. N Engl J Med. 1999; 340(2):85-92.
Isotalo PA, Edgar D, Toye B. Polymicrobial tenosynovitis with Pasteurella multocida and other gram negative bacilli after a Siberian tiger bite. J Clin Pathol. 2000; 53(11):87-872.
Rose VL: CDC issues revised guidelines for the prevention of human rabies. Am Fam Physician. 1999; 59(7):2007-2008, 2013-2014.

Authors
Drs Anderson, Utter, Szatkowski, Patrick, Duncan, Turner, and Dekutoski are from the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.

Drs Anderson, Utter, Szatkowski, Patrick, Duncan, Turner, and Dekutoski have no relevant financial relationships to disclose.

Correspondence should be addressed to: Mark Dekutoski, MD, Mayo Clinic, 200 1st St SW, Rochester, MN 55905.

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Stray tiger attacks villager in Barabanki

Stray tiger attacks villager in Barabanki

Express News Service Posted: Dec 12, 2008 at 0104 hrs

Lucknow The tiger that had strayed into the Barabanki district a few days ago attacked a villager on Thursday.

Hiding in the jungle of Shahpur, around six km on the outskirts of Deva in Barabanki, it attacked the villager when he had taken his cattle to the jungle for grazing. He managed to escape.

“The tiger was trying to hunt and had even chased a calf. But it was unable to make a killing,” Divisional Forest Officer of Barabanki, A P Tripathi, said.

The Forest department has sent a team to the area to catch the tiger.

The pug marks were last reported from Saili Kiratpur village in Barabanki on Tuesday. “W were unable to track the pug marks as the tiger had moved along the Sharda Canal service road. It later reached the Shahpur jungle area,” said Tripathi. The department has sent the cast of the pug marks to the Dudhwa National Park for examination to ensure that it is the same tiger that had strayed from the Park nearly a month ago.

“Only after examining the pug marks, we can ensure that it is the same tiger,” said P P Singh, Deputy Director of Dudhwa National Park.

http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/stray-tiger-attacks-villager-in-barabanki/397434/

http://www.bigcatrescue.org/

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Tiger returns after escaping from animal sanctuary

Tiger returns after escaping from animal sanctuary

Associated Press
3:43 AM CST, December 10, 2008

ALBION, Ind. - A tiger that escaped from an animal sanctuary in northeast Indiana returned to its home several hours later.

Noble County 911 Director Mitch Fiandt said the 18-year-old female Bengal tiger escaped from the Black Pine Animal Park in Albion about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Park officials say the tiger returned to the property around 11 p.m. and was back in its enclosure about an hour later.

An Albion firefighter alerted authorities after spotting the tiger on his property.

Authorities shot the tiger with a tranquilizer, but were not immediately able to capture it.

Black Pine personnel felt the tiger would come back to the park due in part to the inclement weather.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-ap-in-tigerescape,0,6215660.story

http://www.bigcatrescue.org/

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

SANTA CLAUS BIT BY BOBCAT IN PET STORE

SANTA CLAUS BIT BY BOBCAT IN PET STORE
Cleve Bryan ( cbryan@nbc40.net ) - 12/9/08 05:57 pm

HAMILTON TWP. - Scratches and bites cover the hand and arm of Jonathan Bebbington, after an encounter with a not–so–friendly feline.

Bebbington says, "It hurt, it had a lot of power in its jaws."

That's because the kitty on Bebbington's lap when he was dressed as Santa Claus for pictures appears to be a bobcat.

A woman brought the cat to the "Santa Paws" charity picture fundraiser Sunday at Petsmart in Hamilton Township.

People can bring their pets to get pictures with Santa for $9.95 and at least half the money goes to various animal charities.

Bebbington's been playing Santa at these events for years.

He says, "We've done some exotic different pets. We've had people bring in horses or parrots or snakes, things like that. But I thought a bobcat? Well it's different."

Bobcats can grow to 40 or 50 pounds, Bebbington says this one was not full grown but it's large size, distinctive facial features and short tail leave no doubt it was some kind of bobcat.

He struggled to control the cat for nearly 5 minutes while it bit him repeatedly.

"He locked on here, grabbed the skin," he says as he points to his left hand.

The cat's owner left after the incident without providing her name, though she did tell volunteers with Penny Angel's Beagle Rescue, which ran the event, that she had it shipped from Wyoming for $1,500.

It is illegal to own a bobcat in New Jersey and allegedly this owner was keeping hers tethered in yard.

"Depending on what township she lives in that in itself could be considered animal neglect. So we just want to find out where the animal is and make sure the animal is up to date on it's shots and just find out if the animal is okay," says Christine Tartaro, a spokesperson for Penny Angel's.

There have been other cases of bobcats in South Jersey, including Mr. Peepers at the Cape May County Park Zoo, which was rescued from Bridgeton.

Zoo officials say the cats can appear friendly but do not make good pets.

Vincent Sonetto, supervising animal keeper at the Park Zoo says, "Regardless of how nice it is, eventually it could snap and just turn back to wild, enough to do some damage."

Something Bebbington, a locksmith by trade, found out first hand and if the cat is not found he'll have to go through a series of painful rabies shots.

"I never expected this when volunteering to do this. I love the animals and I would still continue to do this, but it does bother me."

One consolation is Petsmart has offered to cover Bebbington's medical bills.

Anyone with information about the bobcat or its owner should call the Atlantic County Division of Public Health at (609) 645 5931.

http://www.nbc40.net/view_story.php?id=7716

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an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
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813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

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Monday, December 08, 2008

Siberian Lynx Captured in WI

I called the authorities on this and offered a home to the cat, but the owner is coming to retrieve her.  They have had issues with this owner before, and have taken our name as a placement option if the owner cannot keep the Siberian Lynx contained.  An anonymous tipster said the owner bought this cat and her mate in MO and then raised them as pets.  When the cats reached about a year of age, the male began attacking the husband and son in the family and both the male and female were said to have been turned loose on purpose.  No one has caught the male, and the owner denies that there ever was a male cat and denies that he turned this female loose.

Hello Kitty, what kitty are you?

This is the cat that visited the Alan Borud home this week. Is it a lynx or some other exotic cat and what is it doing here?

DNR Warden Mike Green/contributed

This is the cat that visited the Alan Borud home this week. Is it a lynx or some other exotic cat and what is it doing here?

By Kay James, Dells Events

wde-news@capitalnewspapers.com

Wisconsin Dells mail carrier Alan Borud likes cats, but he admits the one he found in his yard this week scared him at first.

Borud pulled into his driveway in Adams County at the end of a workday and saw what he at first thought was a stray cat. Then the cat stood up and started walking toward his car. This was no stray cat. Borud yelled at it, and it kept walking toward him.

"Normally, I'm not afraid of animals," he said, but he decided with the size of this cat and the way it was walking toward the car he would pull the car around so his door was closer to the house. He thought the animal was wild and had rabies since it was not acting like a wild animal.

Safely in the house, Borud watched as the cat came up on the porch, stood on its hind legs — at which point it was about chest high to Borud — and looked in the window. Borud estimated the cat weighed between 40 and 50 pounds.

Borud's own pet cat took one look at the visitor and went flying into the bedroom to hide under the bed.

"I slowly decided it was friendly, he said. Borud, at one point, donned a leather glove and reached out the door toward the cat. It allowed him to pet it and started purring, although Borud said the purring sounded more like a rumble. The animal appeared well fed and seemed to want to come into the house.

Borud called the Adams County Sheriff's Office, who in turn called Department of Natural Resources Warden Mike Green. Green then called Borud.

Green told Borud he does not normally come out for cats, but after Borud described this cat, he decided to come and see it for himself.

When Green arrived, he stayed in his truck for a time watching the cat. At first Green told Borud the cat was some type of lynx, usually found in the wild in Canada. It had to have been a pet, Green said, since it was so tame, but he also said the animal was intimidating. In the wild, lynx are solitary animals that kill and eat deer, small mammals and birds.

Green told the Events he did not know what the animal was. "I can't say for sure. There are several possibilities." It has some characteristics of a lynx such as pronounced ear tufts, but the feet, legs and face have differences from a lynx.

Adams County Animal Control was called to come and pick up the cat. The animal control officer arrived and pulled a cat kennel out of his vehicle. Borud said he told the man they did not think the cat would fit in it. The officer insisted it could hold a big cat until he saw the lynx cat. Then he went back to his vehicle for a dog kennel.

Since the lynx/cat was so friendly, instead of trying to catch it, they sat the kennel on the ground. Borud said the animal was not the least bit scared and seemed used to a kennel. It stuck its head in and walked into the kennel.




--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org
SaveTheBigCats@gmail.com

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

This message contains information from Big Cat Rescue that may be
confidential or privileged. The information contained herein is intended
only for the eyes of the individual or entity named above.  You are hereby
notified that any dissemination, distribution, disclosure, and/or copying of
the information contained in this communication is strictly prohibited. The
recipient should check this e-mail and any attachments for the presence of
viruses. Big Cat Rescue accepts no liability for any damage or loss caused
by any virus transmitted by this e-mail.




Thursday, December 04, 2008

Officials seek captors of cougar killed in Ga.

Rare cougar shot, killed near West Point Lake
By STACY SHELTON

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

An extremely rare, 140-pound male cougar was shot and killed near West Point Lake last month, according to Georgia Wildlife Resources Division Director Dan Forster.

The large cat was inspected and showed signs that it had illegally been held in captivity, including abrasions, Forster told the Board of Natural Resources on Wednesday.

Forster said his division is working with officials in Alabama to identify the cougar’s captors and had a couple of suspects. But he also acknowledged “we may not ever know.”

Forster said the division often gets reports of cougar sightings that don’t pan out. Cougars, which are listed as endangered animals by both the state and federal governments, are believed to be extinct from Georgia.

The decline in their population is linked to the first European settlers, who killed cougars and other predators to protect their livestock, according to the DNR.

http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/stories/2008/12/03/cougar_killed.html

-------

Learn more about big cats and Big Cat Rescue at http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Monday, December 01, 2008

Tiger injures three in Uttar Pradesh village

Tiger injures three in Uttar Pradesh village

1 Dec 2008, 1348 hrs IST, IANS

LUCKNOW: A tiger has unleashed terror in an Uttar Pradesh village attacking three people and killing cattle, a state forest official said on Monday.

The tiger has strayed into the Mehmoodpur village in Sitapur district, about 80km from Lucknow.

"According to our reports, the tiger is hiding in sugarcane fields of the village," divisional forest officer RK Sachan said by telephone.

The tiger on Sunday night injured three farmers while they were returning home on their bicycles. Also, the tiger killed a calf and goats in the same village.

He said an intensive combing operation has been launched.

As Sitapur has no forest area, officials believe the tiger has come from the Dudhwa Tiger reserve located in the neighbouring Lakhimpur Kheri district.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Earth/Tiger_injures_three_in_UP/articleshow/3779369.cms

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Runaway tiger killed in Pocahontas County

Runaway tiger killed in Pocahontas County

By Staff reports
December 1, 2008

The owner of a tiger on the loose in Pocahontas County put the animal down Monday afternoon, said Hoy Murphy, spokesman for the state Division of Natural Resources.

David Cassell of Cass found the tiger and killed it, Murphy said. He was not sure where or how the animal was killed Monday. He was waiting for a conservation officer's report.

While Murphy said the snowmaking crew at Snowshoe Mountain Resort saw the big cat on Monday morning, resort spokeswoman Laura Parquette said the tiger had not been seen on Snowshoe's property.

"They're looking for it in Cass, on the other side of the mountain," Parquette said.

Cassell, who works at Mountain Lodge on Snowshoe Mountain, was trying to find the animal and tranquilize it, Murphy said earlier in the day. Security personnel at Snowshoe were also looking for the animal, he said.

"We have a conservation officer on his way there now. ...Normally this isn't the kind of wildlife we deal with," Murphy said Monday afternoon.

Cassell had a permit for the animal, he said.

In May 2006, an Asian brown bear owned by Cassell escaped into the wild after someone cut the lock to its enclosure. The 400-pound bruin has not been seen since.

http://wvgazette.com/News/200812010424

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Friday, November 28, 2008

2 Escaped Servals Shot in KS and PA same day

Kansas City police shoot African serval cat

KANSAS CITY (AP) - An exotic African cat roaming a Kansas City neighborhood has been shot and killed by police.

The cat was a serval, an African breed that resembles a small cheetah. Servals have spotted coats and long necks. They stand about 20 inches at the shoulder.

Police received several calls from a northern Kansas City neighborhood from residents worried the cat was dangerous to children. But efforts to trap it over several weeks were unsuccessful, and an officer shot it Thursday with a patrol rifle.

Police think the cat was dumped or had escaped from people who were keeping it as a pet. The identity of the owners is not known.

(http://www.newstribune.com/articles/2008/11/24/news_state/039state25topcat.txt)


Pa. officials: Exotic cat killed near Philly

Associated Press - November 26, 2008 7:05 PM ET

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - A Chester County farm caretaker says he thought he was shooting a bobcat in the chicken coop -- then his heart sank when he saw it had a collar.

The animal he killed was a serval, a small, cheetah-like exotic cat that someone was keeping as a pet.

George Heim runs the Garrett Mill Farm about 20 miles west of Philadelphia.

He says he called a friend who works for the state game commission and was told he could shoot the animal. The game commission confirmed his account and says Heim was within his legal rights to protect his chickens.

Heim says once he realized he'd shot a pet, he was sad for the animal -- and angry at its owner for allowing it to be out.

Servals are found in many parts of the African continent. They are carnivorous and typically weigh about 35 pounds.

(http://www.wfmj.com/Global/story.asp?S=9421360)
--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org
SaveTheBigCats@gmail.com

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

This message contains information from Big Cat Rescue that may be
confidential or privileged. The information contained herein is intended
only for the eyes of the individual or entity named above.  You are hereby
notified that any dissemination, distribution, disclosure, and/or copying of
the information contained in this communication is strictly prohibited. The
recipient should check this e-mail and any attachments for the presence of
viruses. Big Cat Rescue accepts no liability for any damage or loss caused
by any virus transmitted by this e-mail.




Saturday, November 22, 2008

Tiger, tiger... but things still burning bright

Tiger, tiger... but things still burning bright

by Sheela Narayanon - Sat, Nov 22, 2008

GETTING back on track slowly but surely. That is the attitude the Singapore Zoo is taking a week after the fatal tiger mauling that took place at the park on Nov 13.

Cleaner Nordin Montong had climbed into the white tigers' enclosure and provoked the three big rare cats into attacking him.

Despite the worldwide media coverage about the tragic incident, the zoo's popularity was not dented as locals and tourists thronged the park over the past week.

One reason could be the zoo's new exhibit, the 3ha Rainforest KidzWorld to attract children.

It includes a maze, a carousel, a dinosaur walk and a wet play area.

The zoo's curator of zoology Subash Chandran (right) also credits the quick return of confidence to the zoo's 35-year reputation as a safe and fun place.

He told tabla! that the visitors' confidence in the zoo remained high: 'People know that we have the highest regard for their safety and we are vigilant. The zoo has always been a fun place to go and our staff is very enthusiastic.'

The new exhibit, which replaced the old children's petting zoo, reinforced that image, added Mr Chandran, 56.

'We have sessions where the children can groom the miniature horses and get to touch the rabbits,' he said.

There are also activity books published by the zoo to complement the new attraction.

The zoo veteran, who has been with the park even before it officially opened in 1973, admitted that it has been a "trying" week for the zoo's staff.

Mr Nordin, a 32-year-old cleaner from Sarawak, East Malaysia, jumped into the tigers' enclosure with a yellow pail and a broom. He agitated them by swinging his broom at them.

Two of the tigers set upon him and he later died from bites to his neck and a fractured skull.

The tigers - Omar, Jippie and Winnie - were confined to their den for five days before they were let back into their enclosure on Nov 18.

Mr Subash said the tigers were a "bit apprehensive when they saw people" but settled down quickly and were back to their "inquisitive" selves.

The zoo is reviewing its safety measures and looking into adding alarms at various points within its premises, increasing patrols and setting up a closed circuit television (CCTV) near exhibits of potentially dangerous animals.

Mr Chandran said: 'It will take time but we can get past this incident.'

http://news.asiaone.com/News/AsiaOne%2BNews/Singapore/Story/A1Story20081122-102579.html

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Friday, November 21, 2008

Tiger kills fisherman

Tiger kills fisherman

Calcutta, Nov. 21: A tiger dragged a fisherman looking for catch in the shallows of the Matla into the Sunderbans last evening.

Fellow fishermen, who chased the tiger, found Mangal Naiya’s body in the forest about half an hour later.

“The tiger had bitten off half his face and the eyes were gone,” divisional forest officer Kalyan Das said.

Six people, including Mangal’s mother, were in waist-deep water with hand nets when Mangal, who was nearer to the bank, cried for help. The tiger had grabbed him by the neck when he stooped to search for crabs.

Mangal, 20, is the fifth person killed by a Sunderbans tiger in the past six months. The body of the last victim could not be traced in September.

http://www.telegraphindia.com/1081122/jsp/bengal/story_10147232.jsp

http://www.bigcatrescue.org/

Thursday, November 20, 2008

It's ‘Not The Tiger's Fault'

It's ‘Not The Tiger's Fault'

Zoo Owners Say Bitten Worker Admits Error; PETA Asks Probe
By Tom Mitchell - 11/20/2008

LURAY - Four days after a tiger at a local zoo bit a teenage employee, owners of the zoo called the girl's decision to touch the tiger "a mistake," adding that the victim holds the tiger blameless in the attack.

"She wants everybody to know that [the biting was] not the tiger's fault," said Jennifer Westhoff, co-owner of Luray Zoo.

The attack, in which a 5-year-old, 225-pound female Bengal tiger named "Star" bit off the finger of a 15-year-old female employee, occurred on Sunday. The victim, whose name has not been released because she is a minor, was showing the tiger to visitors at the zoo when she was bitten, said Westhoff.

Mark Kilby, the facility's other owner, said he and Westhoff have discouraged employees from handling the zoo's animals because of the danger inherent in touching or petting wild creatures. The incident, said Kilby, will force him and Westhoff to be take a harder line in enforcing that policy.

"We've repeatedly told our employees not to try to handle the animals," said Kilby. "I'm not going to be nice about it anymore."

PETA Asks For Probe

Also on Wednesday, a national animal-rights organization called for an investigation into the incident.

In a letter to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals asked the USDA to look into the attack and to "strictly enforce the Animal Welfare Act."

The zoo's owners say they would welcome any such investigation.

"PETA is investigating us," said Westhoff. "We don't have any plans to hide. We're very proud of the work we've done."

PETA also has written to the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry about the incident.

Quoting regulations as to the employment of teenagers, PETA stated that teens under 18 may not work in any "occupation that exposes them to a recognized hazard capable of causing serious physical injury or death."

The Luray Zoo has frequently employed people as young as 14, said Kilby. He noted that Virginia law allows minors under the age of 16 to work certain jobs as long as they have permits to do so issued by the school system they attend.

"They want to look for fault [and] I'm sorry they're going after that," Kilby said of PETA's criticism on the issue regarding the employee's age. "We [and PETA] are on the same team. But I'm disappointed in their actions."

What Happened

The mishap occurred when the girl tried to scratch a side of the tiger's face with her left hand, said Westhoff. The girl, who according to Westhoff is a Page County resident, had worked at the zoo for a year and a half.

According to Westhoff, the tiger playfully seized the girl's hand. When a woman tried to pull the hand free, the animal refused to release it and bit the girl's hand, severing her left "pinky" finger.

Touching Tiger A ‘Mistake'

The injured girl came by the zoo Wednesday after being treated at the University of Virginia Medical Center, where she was taken on Sunday. The girl hopes to return to work at the zoo, where several of her family members have worked, said Kilby.

Officials for the Virginia Department of Health, which is investigating the incident, had discussed the possibility of euthanizing the tiger to determine if it had rabies, but Kilby said that won't be necessary because the victim is receiving rabies shots as a preventive measure.

No Plans to Close

Kilby declined to discuss whether the zoo carries insurance for such attacks. He said there are no plans to close the zoo, nor has there been any indication that the USDA, which licenses the facility, intends to do so. The zoo, which is open seven days a week in the spring and summer months and on weekends from November through mid-April, will be open this weekend, Kilby said.

"We can't sit down and feel sorry for ourselves," said Kilby. "We've got to keep going."

Sunday's incident was the first such emergency in the zoo's 25-year history, Westhoff said. Westhoff, 39, and Kilby, 53, have run the zoo for the past 12 years since buying it from the previous owners.

Luray Zoo houses 250 animals, mostly reptiles, said Kilby. Besides the tiger, the zoo's 37 mammals include five other breeds of what Kilby terms "big cats" - two lynxes, one serval and one bobcat.

An official with the Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley, Minn., says incidents like the one at Luray are preventable. Ron Hylton, director of conservations at the Minnesota Zoo and coordinator for the zoo's species survival plan for tigers, said tiger attacks occur "repeatedly" at privately owned zoos.

"A tiger is a wild animal, and there are just moments when the hard-wiring in their circuitry just fires off," said Hylton. "We always tell people in zoos, ‘You manage your tigers exclusively with a hands-off approach.' But the message doesn't get to some folks."

http://www.dnronline.com/news_details.php?AID=33431&CHID=1

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Animal that fatally mauled worker allowed to live

Animal that fatally mauled worker allowed to live

Associated Press - November 19, 2008 9:15 PM ET

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. (AP) - A big cat that fatally mauled a worker at a
wildlife sanctuary won't be euthanized.

32-year-old Peter Getz was mauled by Rocky the liger -- a cross between
a male lion and a female tiger -- on Oct. 29 and died the following day.

Lori Ensign, the owner of Safari's Sanctuary, says she has been told the
liger will be able to live out his life at the park.

The park closed after the attack but will reopen on Nov. 29-30 to raise money
to feed its animals through the winter. A news release issued by the park
does not discuss its status beyond that.

Ensign says that Getz would not have wanted the park's mission to cease. She
says park officials will work to keep Getz's dream alive through a renewed
effort to educate people on the dangers of having exotic animals as pets.

Information from: Tulsa World,
(http://www.tulsaworld.com)
http://www.kfsm.com/global/story.asp?s=9382631&ClientType=Printable

--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org
SaveTheBigCats@gmail.com

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

This message contains information from Big Cat Rescue that may be
confidential or privileged. The information contained herein is intended
only for the eyes of the individual or entity named above.  You are hereby
notified that any dissemination, distribution, disclosure, and/or copying of
the information contained in this communication is strictly prohibited. The
recipient should check this e-mail and any attachments for the presence of
viruses. Big Cat Rescue accepts no liability for any damage or loss caused
by any virus transmitted by this e-mail.




Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bengal tiger bites young worker at Virginia zoo

Bengal tiger bites young worker at Virginia zoo

LURAY, Va. (AP) — A 16-year-old employee of a small Virginia zoo is recovering after a tiger bit her when she tried to pet it.

Zoo owner Jennifer Westhoff says the girl lost her pinky and had cuts on her hand. She was showing a 5-year-old Bengal tiger named Star to visitors when it bit her through its cage.

Westhoff says the tiger grabbed the girl's hand, then got spooked and bit her when a visitor jumped over a fence to help.

The girl was taken to the University of Virginia Medical Center and was expected to be released Wednesday.

The Luray Zoo is the only rescue zoo in Virginia and houses 260 animals, mostly reptiles, over four acres.

Star is the zoo's only tiger, and Westhoff says she will remain there.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hGNzHnJfU-73dBO_Y59FHegAZy6AD94I770G0

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Monday, November 17, 2008

Singapore Zoo monitors white tigers’ stress levels

Singapore Zoo monitors white tigers’ stress levels

Channel NewsAsia - Tuesday, November 18 SINGAPORE: The Singapore Zoo is keeping its white tiger exhibit closed for a few more days to monitor the tigers’ stress levels.

Two white tigers were involved in last Thursday’s incident where a cleaner was mauled to death after he jumped into the enclosure.

During the incident, zookeepers and onlookers threw umbrellas and even used a long pole to distract the tigers.

The zoo says two female tigers, reportedly stressed by the incident, are "doing fine".

The keepers are also going about their daily routine of feeding and cleaning the tigers.

Since the tragedy, the zoo has increased patrols around various exhibits, but says its security measures are effective and will not be changed for now.

The number of visitors to the park increased over the weekend, owing to the start of Singapore’s school holidays.

http://malaysia.news.yahoo.com/cna/20081117/tap-446-singapore-zoo-monitors-white-tig-231650b.html

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Tiger Bites Zoo Employee

Tiger Bites Zoo Employee

Luray, Va.
Posted: 6:13 PM Nov 17, 2008
Last Updated: 7:20 PM Nov 17, 2008
Reporter: Michael Hyland


A 16-year-old girl is recovering at the University of Virginia Medical Center Monday after a tiger bit her. It happened at the Luray Zoo and Reptile Jungle Sunday afternoon.

Maj. Russell Montgomery, Page County Sheriff's Office, says the victim is an employee of the zoo.

The sheriff's office got an emergency call just after 2:00 p.m. Sunday. Montgomery says it was a five-year-old Bengal tiger that bit the employee.

The victim was flown to the UVA Medical Center. Montgomery says she had severe injuries on her left hand and arm. It's unclear what led to the tiger attacking the employee.

Managers at the zoo declined to comment Monday about what's being done with the tiger, but they did say that the employee is doing well.

http://www.whsv.com/news/headlines/34610029.html#

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Tiger Bites Employee

Tiger Bites Employee

Luray
Posted: 9:47 PM Nov 16, 2008
Last Updated: 9:47 PM Nov 16, 2008
Reporter: Keith Jones
Email Address: kjones@whsv.com

TV-3 has learned that a tiger at the Luray Zoo has seriously injured an employee.

The Page County Sheriff's Office says the worker's finger was amputated as result of a tiger bite. The owner of the zoo did not comment on how it happened. The worker was taken by helicopter for medical treatment.

http://www.whsv.com/news/headlines/34560274.html

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Tigers should stay

Tigers should stay

ALMOST all 100 people polled by The New Paper on Sunday found that the white tigers should not be blamed for the zoo cleaner's death and should stay.

Ninety-nine of them said the tigers should not be sent away or 'punished' in any way.

Even the lone voice of dissent did not want the tiger to go. Instead, she suggested that the White Tiger exhibit should be closed - just temporarily.

TNP on Sunday said the majority felt that the big cats were behaving according to their instincts.

Mr Jeff Yeo, an events organiser, told TNP on Sunday: 'It is not the tigers' fault. Animals, being what they are, will retaliate if provoked, or if they feel they are in danger, especially in their territory.'

He added that even if the tigers had escaped from their enclosure - which they had not - the zoo should be held culpable, not the animals.

Mr Kenneth Tan, 30, a writer, said that the tigers should stay as it was the man who had leapt into the tigers' way.

'We might as well shut down MRT stations since people jump onto the tracks there too,' he said.

Others cited the white tigers' beauty and the fact that they are an endangered species as reasons for maintaining the exhibit.

But some felt that the zoo could do more to safeguard its employees and visitors.

Mauled victim did not want to die

Meanwhile, a new video provided to TNP on Sunday by a reader has shown that the cleaner Nordin Montong, 32, fought tool and nail to stay alive.

TNP reader Aziz Ansari, 16, a student, filmed the initial part of the horrific attack with his handphone.

The video clip showed Mr Nordin's desperate fight to save himself, first by trying to get up and back into the moat, then by kicking one of the two tigers.

Mr Nordin's body was flown back to his hometown in Kuching, Sarawak on Saturday afternoon and buried in the Kampung Sambir Muslim cemetery, more than an hour's drive from Kuching.

About a dozen people were at the cargo terminal to receive the body, including Mr Nordin's father, Mr Montong Sahom, 54, his mother, and close relatives.

Later, 80 relatives and friends gathered for the burial, which took place at about 5 pm.

Many among them remained puzzled about what happened.

Mr Nordin's mother, Madam Baduyah Ahmad, 52, who was closest to the victim, the eldest son, said he had called her on Thursday morning, and he sounded fine.

http://www.straitstimes.com/Breaking%2BNews/Singapore/Story/STIStory_302977.html

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

The day after the tiger attack

The day after the tiger attack

November 16, 2008 Sunday, 01:48 AM

ON the surface, it seemed to be business as usual at the Singapore Zoo on Friday - a day after cleaner Nordin Montong was mauled to death in the white tiger exhibit, shocking visitors and Singaporeans.

Tourists armed with maps explored the gardens with their cameras and sunshades, while children let out shrieks of excitement as they bathed in jets of water in the children's play area.

But look deeper, and it is another story.

On the visitor's tram, we drive past the white tiger enclosure and people start to whisper.

'This is where that Nordin guy got eaten by a tiger,' one said.

'Yes, that is why it's shut today. It is all over the news,' said another, as he craned his neck in an attempt to look into the enclosure.

In front of the enclosure, others are taking photos of the sign that read 'exhibit closed', and keepers speak to each other in hushed voices.

I ask them if they knew the 32-year-old Mr Nordin.

'We can't say anything, you better talk to the management,' they reply.

Behind the scenes, a team hurries to deal with what has happened.

Already, the management has met the victim's family. We were told that some form of compensation was offered.

And to prevent a recurrence, a slew of new safety measures would be rolled out in coming months. Think alarm buttons, more patrols and CCTV cameras.

But in the same breath, zoo officials reiterate that current measures are sufficient.

At the white tiger enclosure, for one, thick wooden railings and a plant bed overhang minimise the chances of a visitor falling into trouble.

What happened on Thursday, said zoo officials, was extraordinary.

'We cannot account for someone who intentionally scales the railing,' said official Ms Isabel Cheng with a sigh. 'We can do what we can for careless visitors, but it would be difficult for us to be 100 per cent secure for someone who wants to break into the exhibit.'

She brings up the analogy of a person with the intention of jumping off a block of flats.

'You can't stop them in that kind of situation can you? If the person wants to do it, they will find a way to,' she said.

Read also: Tigers should stay

http://blogs.straitstimes.com/2008/11/15/the-day-after-the-tiger-attack

http://www.bigcatrescue.org/

Friday, November 14, 2008

Singapore Zoo assures visitors that white tiger exhibit is safe

Singapore Zoo assures visitors that white tiger exhibit is safe

By S. Ramesh, Channel NewsAsia Posted: 14 November 2008 1615 hrs

SINGAPORE: A day after a cleaner was mauled to death at the Singapore Zoo's white tiger enclosure, officials assured the public that the exhibit is "very safe".

It held a news conference on Friday to clear any doubts even as it opened its latest S$12 million attraction called the Rainforest Kidzworld.

Visitors streamed in to view the attraction, which opened in time for the school holidays.

Executive director and CEO of Temasek Holdings, Ms Ho Ching, who launched the new attraction, said: "The zoo has deepened its own knowledge and expertise through the years.

"I have full respect for the team at the WildLife Reserves for their hard work, passion and constant care. It is amazing how their dedication and imagination have created a natural and safe wildlife habitat only half an hour away from the city lights."

Meanwhile, the chairperson of Wildlife Reserves - which owns the zoo - took the opportunity to speak about Thursday's incident at the white tiger enclosure.

Claire Chiang, non-executive chairman, Wildlife Reserves, said: "Let me take a few minutes to address the unfortunate incident at the white tiger exhibit yesterday. Our sympathies and condolences go to Mr Nordin Bin Montong's family.

"I would like to reassure all visitors that the white tiger exhibit is very safe and is as safe as any part of the zoo. The safety measures we have implemented exceed the standards recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).

"AZA is the internationally recognised organisation that accredits only institutions that have achieved rigorous standards for animal care, education, wildlife conservation and science."

Visitors, too, seemed to agree that the white tiger exhibit does not pose any danger.

Aaron Tan, a visitor, said: "The enclosure is actually quite safe as long as you don't go... into the enclosure itself. So I can still bring my kid here."

At a news conference later, zoo officials addressed other concerns raised, including the five-minute response time it took the sharpshooters to reach the scene.

Biswajit Guha, assistant director, Singapore Zoo, said: "The five-minute situation is essentially sufficient to go to a hotspot in the case of an animal escape. This was an extraordinary situation whereby someone had actually jumped in.

"Even if it had been a fall and the person was trying very hard to avoid the tigers and had gone to the deep end, we are quite confident he would have been able to move in, in time."

He added that firing tranquilisers would not have saved the cleaner as it could have further provoked the animals.

He added: "Tranquilisers don't work instantaneously. So it will take about five minutes before having an impact on the animal. And to have such a sharp impact coming into contact with an animal, it could provoke the animal more and there might be a more drastic reaction."

Meanwhile, the Singapore Zoo said it will not be stationing armed officers at the enclosures which are deemed dangerous. But it will definitely be increasing its patrols by the zoo's keepers and operational staff.

Staff who witnessed the incident or need counselling will also be taken care of.

The zoo hopes to re-open the white tiger attraction within the next few days. - CNA/vm

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/389832/1/.html

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Tiger escapes, kills caretaker at Mexico zoo

Tiger escapes, kills caretaker at Mexico zoo

Nov 11, 2008

MEXICO CITY (AP) — A tiger escaped from an unlocked cage at a commercial zoo and fatally mauled its caretaker before it was captured and killed, officials said Tuesday.

State officials said that Bioparque Estrella had closed Monday when the tiger left its unlocked cage and fatally attacked 26-year-old Herminio Rodriguez Palma. It was unclear why the cage had been left unlocked.

Some 150 police officers and zoo veterinarians began an intense search for the tiger at the 300-hectare (740-acre) wild animal park in the countryside northwest of Mexico City. It was captured and killed before dawn.

Mexico has had problems with dangerous animals escaping from their caretakers recently.

In September, a five-ton elephant got away from his trainer at a circus, wandered onto a highway outside Mexico City and was fatally hit by a bus. The bus driver also was killed.

Three tigers escaped from a circus truck and took shelter in a house in western Mexico last week, but were quickly recaptured.

And in August, a 500-pound lion escaped from a local lawmaker's private zoo in southern Mexico, killing two dogs and a pig and attacking a woman and child on a donkey before it was sedated and captured.

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jjL4B4uKwS4TAaFA4uBP-1Dkr3NQD94CRFJ84

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

USDA removes malnourished elephant from Lance Ramos

USDA removes malnourished elephant from Lance Ramos


Published: Today

TAMPA -- Ned the elephant has new digs.

U.S. Department of Agriculture officials removed the 21-year-old Asian elephant from his Balm home Saturday after they found him malnourished in the care of his owner, circus trainer Lance Ramos.

Carol Buckley of The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee in Hohenwald, Tenn., wrote in a diary she's been keeping about Ned that his shoulder blades were protruding from his 9-foot-6, 7,500-pound frame when he arrived at the sanctuary Sunday.

That's about a ton underweight, she said.

Ned, who was born at Busch Gardens on Oct. 10, 1987, is only the second elephant to ever be confiscated by the USDA, according to Elliot. He was born to two elephants who were captured in the wild in Southeast Asia, but who came to belong to a Busch Gardens breeding manager.

When he was 2 years old, Ned was sold to a circus trainer. He performed with the Big Apple circus for almost a decade until elephants were cut from the circus lineup. That's when Ramos took possession of the elephant, according to the sanctuary.

Jessica Milteer, a spokeswoman with the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, said Ramos was warned several times prior to the confiscation that his care of Ned needed to be improved.

This is not Ramos first encounter with USDA sanctions. In 2000, the federal agency charged him with violating the Animal Welfare Act after an 18-year-old female elephant broke free from a chain and killed Teresa Ramos-Caballero. The elephant died soon after of unknown reasons.

Ramos, who is also known as Lancelot Kollmann, has also been cited by the USDA in the past for failure to provide veterinary care to injured animals, causing trauma and harm to a jaguar and unsanitary conditions. He is currently appealing an administrative court ruling in a case brought by USDA concerning his treatment of bigs cats, Milteer said.

Milteer said the USDA only enforces civil and licensing sanctions and does not have the ability to bring criminal charges.

Ramos could not be immediately reached for comment.

Rebecca Catalanello, Times staff writer

Photo courtesy of The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee

Carole's note:  This is where Snorkle came from and there are still probably a dozen or so tigers there.

--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org
SaveTheBigCats@gmail.com

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

This message contains information from Big Cat Rescue that may be
confidential or privileged. The information contained herein is intended
only for the eyes of the individual or entity named above.  You are hereby
notified that any dissemination, distribution, disclosure, and/or copying of
the information contained in this communication is strictly prohibited. The
recipient should check this e-mail and any attachments for the presence of
viruses. Big Cat Rescue accepts no liability for any damage or loss caused
by any virus transmitted by this e-mail.




Monday, November 10, 2008

'Playful' tiger injures zookeeper

'Playful' tiger injures zookeeper

JUNSELE, Sweden, Nov. 9 (UPI) --

A zookeeper is expected to recover from wounds inflicted by a playful white tiger, said the owner of the Junsele Zoo in the north of Sweden.

The keeper, who has worked with the zoo's tigers for 16 years, was trapped in a cage with the big cat for about 15 minutes Saturday, said Ulf Henriksson, the zoo's owner.

Henriksson said he lured the tiger away from the staff member with a piece of meat so rescue workers could get the man out of the cage and into an ambulance, the Swedish news agency tt reported Sunday.

The keeper was bitten in the foot and the shoulder and would be hospitalized for a couple of days to ensure against infection from the wounds, Henriksson said, noting the tiger saw the keeper more as a playmate than a threat.

Had this tiger wanted to inflict injury then we would not have had this happy ending, Henriksson said.

http://www.timesoftheinternet.com/18298.html

http://www.bigcatrescue.org

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Danger of big cats in wrong hands

Danger of big cats in wrong hands

10:52 PM CST on Wednesday, November 5, 2008

ST. LOUIS (KMOV) -- Twice this year at two separate locations in Missouri, workers almost lost their lives in tiger attacks.

The terrifying incidents prompted News 4 to examine the exotic animal trade business and the potential danger of having big cats in the wrong hands.

Watch News 4 coverage
> Larger player

Camels, zebras, spider monkeys, ostriches, sloths, even a baboon are all for sale at Lolli Bros. livestock auction in central Missouri.

(KMOV.com Extra: News 4 Investigates: Exotic Animal Trade)

An undercover News 4 camera also recorded a rare white lion cub, born in a small family-owned West Virginia zoo. She'll be sold at auction to the highest bidder.

The auction, which is legal, will sell hundreds of exotic species, but there is growing concern that because of auctions and backyard breeders, the big cats are winding up with people who may not appreciate the danger.

Dick Stephens bought his tigers from a backyard breeder when they were cubs.

Now he keeps the full-grown tigers in an outdoor cage at his home just north of Springfield.

Stephens downplays the danger, but a tiger lunged at News 4's Craig Cheatham when he got too close to the cage.

Three years ago, Ronda Good's 17-year old daughter Haley was supposed to be posing for a picture with a tiger cub at a Kansas sanctuary, but the cub wasn't available, so Haley stood next to a full grown tiger hooked to a chain.

Haley turned to run, and the tiger attacked.

Despite the obvious danger connected with owning big cats and other exotic animals, the Lolli Bros. auction has attracted a remarkable following.

During News 4's visit, vehicles with license plates from thirty states and Mexico were seen in the parking lot.

Julie Leicht is the executive director of the Missouri Alliance for Animal Legislation, a group trying to strengthen the state's exotic animal laws, which she believes are among the weakest in the country.

Leicht says dangerous exotic animals like tigers, lions and bears should be microchipped and registered so the state can easily track them.

She said the owners should have to pay registration fees, should not be allowed to let anyone touch the animals and should be required to get insurance.

Leicht said neighboring states of Illinois, Iowa and Kansas all have stronger laws than Missouri.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration admits it has no idea how many lions and tigers are in America, but several animal welfare groups believe there could be thousands of them.

For now the fate of some potentially deadly, sometimes unregulated animals are in the hands of people who may not recognize the danger.

http://www.kmov.com/localnews/4investigates/stories/kmov-stlouis-081105-tigers-investigate.184d54e2f.html

Watch the video there.  You can thank Big Cat Rescuer, La Wanna, for making this undercover story happen.

--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org MakeADifference@BigCatRescue.org

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

This message contains information from Big Cat Rescue that may be
confidential or privileged. The information contained herein is intended
only for the eyes of the individual or entity named above.  You are hereby
notified that any dissemination, distribution, disclosure, and/or copying of
the information contained in this communication is strictly prohibited. The
recipient should check this e-mail and any attachments for the presence of
viruses. Big Cat Rescue accepts no liability for any damage or loss caused
by any virus transmitted by this e-mail.




Friday, October 31, 2008

Liger Kills Keeper on Today Show

Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary


Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary is home to 27 big cats. Former keepers have warned for years that the practices there would lead to injuries, escapes and death. SIAS' website is covered in the typically ignorant photos of the President, Lori Ensign bottle feeding tigers and walking them on leashes.  That kind of irresponsible behavior can only lead to tragedy for humans as well as the animals when they pay the ultimate price. 


October 29, 2008 Broken Arrow, OK:  Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary is home to 27 big cats. Former keepers have warned for years that the practices there of allowing contact with adult tigers would lead to injuries, escapes and death. SIAS' website is covered in the typically ignorant photos of the President, Lori Ensign bottle feeding tigers and walking them on leashes. That kind of irresponsible behavior can only lead to tragedy for humans as well as the animals when they pay the ultimate price. Now the liger named Rocky may be killed for mauling to death a volunteer named Peter Getz who walked in the cage while feeding the cat a deer carcass.  The mauling happened in the presence of more than 40 pre schoolers who were ushered away from the scene. 


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Liger Mauls Man at Pseudo Sanctuary

Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary is not a sanctuary, but rather, a part of the problem.  Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary at 26881 E 58, east of Broken Arrow, Wagoner County, OK is home to 27 big cats. Former keepers have warned for years that the practices there would lead to injuries, escapes and death. SIAS' website is covered in the typically ignorant photos of the President, Lori Ensign bottle feeding tigers and walking them on leashes. That kind of irresponsible behavior can only lead to tragedy for humans as well as the animals when they pay the ultimate price.  See  SanctuaryStandards.com to see that this is no sanctuary.

Mauling puzzles BA wildlife refuge owner


By TIM STANLEY World Staff Writer
10/30/2008  10:25 AM

BROKEN ARROW — Officials with a Broken Arrow wildlife refuge are at a loss to understand why an experienced animal handler who was mauled Wednesday by a big cat violated rules by opening a cage during feeding time.

Peter Getz, 32, a volunteer at Safari's Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E. 58th St., was attacked shortly before noon Wednesday while attempting to feed a liger.

Getz, who suffered wounds to his neck, remained hospitalized Thursday morning at Saint John Medical Center in Tulsa in critical condition.

Lori Ensign, sanctuary owner and operator, said she's trying to piece together what happened, but she knows the sanctuary's strict policy against opening the animal pens during feedings was not followed.

"We try to have all the procedures in place, but for some reason, they weren't followed this time. In all my years we've stressed that whatever you do you don't open that gate," said Ensign, who was away buying feed when the attack occurred.

Ensign said Getz, who is experienced and loves working with animals, has volunteered at the sanctuary for about a year and a half and worked previously at the Tulsa Zoo.

"This is just horrid," Ensign said. "Peter is like a brother. He loves doing this, loves the carnivores — the bears, big cats

and snakes. We were thinking about turning the place over to him some day."

She said she and others are working to set up a fund to help with Getz's medical expenses, with more information to follow.

Other volunteers were with Getz during the feeding, per sanctuary rules.

"We always have three people for feedings as back-up," Ensign said. "They were there and were able to help get him out. But they are still in shock right now and we don't want to push them to find out why procedures were broken. We want to give them time."

The liger, named Rocky, is a hybrid cross between a male lion and a female tiger.

Rocky's fate will ultimately be determined by state wildlife officials, who will investigate the incident and decide whether the cat will be euthanized, Ensign said.

Ensign said the facility has a good safety record.

In 2000, two handlers at the sanctuary were bitten by a black bear, according to reports. The bear was later euthanized.

The sanctuary, a nonprofit wildlife refuge, houses about 200 animals, most of which were donated by private owners, according to the facility's Web site. All staff members are volunteers.

The facility is licensed and regulated through the Oklahoma Wildlife Department and United States Department of Agriculture and is subject to the same rules as public zoos.


Handler attacked while feeding large cat

BROKEN ARROW - Peter Getz, 32, an employee of Safari's Animal Sanctuary in Broken Arrow, remains in critical condition at a Tulsa hospital after being mauled by a liger, a hybrid of a lion and a tigress.

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Authorities say Getz was feeding the big cat Wednesday when he was attacked and bitten on the neck.

After escaping the cage, Getz collapsed. Paramedics performed CPR on him and he was flown by helicopter to St. John Medical Center for treatment.

The refuge was immediately evacuated and locked down.

A group of students from Haskell was inside the sanctuary at the time of the attack but apparently did not see or hear anything that was going on.

A Ledger call to Safari's owner Lori Ensign was answered automatically: "Due to the emotional strain from this injury, Safari's will be closed until further notice. We will only be able to answer emergency calls at this time, so please keep us in your prayers."

http://www.zwire.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=20182445&BRD=2754&PAG=461&dept_id=574063&rfi=6

Liger Critically Injures Oklahoma Zoo Worker

Broken Arrow, OK (AHN) - A worker at an Oklahoma zoo was seriously injured after a liger, a cross between a lion and a tiger, attacked him Wednesday while feeding the animal.

Peter Getz of Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary in Broken Arrow was taken to the St. John Medical Center in Tulsa and remains in critical condition for injuries in the neck and chest, according to authorities.

Zoo officials have no comment but a recorded message from its telephone answering machine said a worker was injured and the safari is closed until further notice.

http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7012846430

Worker attacked by tiger at animal sanctuary

By
Don Bishop
@ October 30, 2008 3:29 AM

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. (AP) - Authorities say a handler at a Wagoner County wild animal sanctuary suffered a puncture wound to the neck after a big cat attacked him during a feeding.

Thirty-two-year-old Peter Getz was bitten in the upper torso and the neck area at Safari's Animal Sanctuary yesterday around noon. Getz was flown by medical helicopter to Saint John Medical Center, where he is listed in critical condition.

Sheriff's Deputy James Suddath says Getz was able to escape the cage following the attack, then collapsed.

Initial reports said Getz was attacked by a tiger. KRMG reported that a lion-tiger mix (a "liger") named Rocky attacked the handler.

Officials say a Haskell Public Schools class on a field trip at the sanctuary didn't witness the attack and that the facility was evacuated and locked down after the incident.


Handler is mauled by big cat
Rocky the liger is shown at Safari's Animal Sanctuary in Broken Arrow. Tulsa World file
 


By TIM STANLEY World Staff Writer
10/30/2008
Last Modified: 10/30/2008  2:38 AM


The handler suffers a neck wound and is hospitalized in critical condition.



BROKEN ARROW — An animal handler at a wildlife refuge was mauled by a big cat during a feeding Wednesday.

The attack occurred shortly before noon at Safari's Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E. 58th St., emergency responders said.

The handler, identified as Peter Getz, 32, was attacked by a liger, a hybrid of a lion and a tigress.

Getz, who suffered a puncture wound to his neck, was flown by helicopter to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa, Fire Department officials said.

He was listed in critical condition Wednesday afternoon, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Deputy Fire Chief James Suddath said: "He was bitten on the neck during a feeding, but he was able to escape the cage. He collapsed after he got out."

Paramedics performed CPR on Getz, Suddath said.

Wagoner County sheriff's deputies also responded.

A deputy said a Haskell Public Schools class was on a field trip at the sanctuary but did not witness the attack.

The refuge was immediately evacuated and locked down, with the liger, named Rocky, and other animals remaining in their pens, officials said.

Sanctuary officials could not be reached Wednesday for comment.

The sanctuary, a nonprofit wildlife refuge, houses about 200 animals, most of which were donated by private owners, according to its Web site.

All of its staff members are volunteers.

The refuge is licensed and regulated through the Oklahoma Wildlife Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is subject to the same rules as public zoos.

Officials said regulatory officials had been notified about the incident.

In 2000, two handlers at the sanctuary were bitten by a black bear.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=20081030_12_A5_Rockyt778685

Liger Attacks Handler At Safari's

Broken Arrow - A handler at Safari's wildlife sanctuary in Broken Arrow is in critical condition after being attacked by a liger.

Owner Lori Ensign says they aren't sure why the cat attacked handler Peter Getz. The liger which is half tiger and half lion has been at the park for over 10 years.

Ensign says Gets was feeding the liger when he opened the cage door, something ensign says they never do for safety. Getz is in ICU at St. John Medical Center.

Ensign says they plan to set up a fund for Getz at Arvest Bank to help with medical expenses.

http://www.ktul.com/news/stories/1008/565586.html

Volunteer critically injured by large cat at Broken Arrow sanctuary

A large cat mauled a volunteer at the Safari's Sanctuary in Broken Arrow Wednesday morning.

The attack occurred at approximately 11:45 at the sanctuary, located at 26881 East 58th Street in the Wagoner County portion of Broken Arrow.

Lori Ensign, operator of the sanctuary, told 2NEWS HD that the incident involved one of the sanctuary's most well-known and popular animals, "Rocky."

"Rocky" is a cross between a lion and a tiger, a hybrid referred to as a "liger."

Ensign said that the accident occurred during a feeding.

A LifeFlight helicopter transported the volunteer, a 32-year-old man, to St. John Medical Center.

This story will be updated as new information becomes available.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apRpFg2F2NM  Video of Rocky the liger being fed by guests
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIG2iAYtoxQ Video of Rocky the liger being fed by guests w/ owner's narration

Liger injures worker at animal sanctuary in Broken Arrow

BY MICHAEL KIMBALL
Published: October 29, 2008

BROKEN ARROW — A liger at a Wagoner County animal sanctuary attacked a volunteer late this morning, officials said.


Rocky the liger, shown in this undated file photo, attacked a volunteer at a Wagoner County wildlife sanctuary Wednesday, officials said. Photo provided by The Tulsa World
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Peter Getz, whose hometown and age were not immediately available, was airlifted to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa in critical condition, a Broken Arrow Fire Department spokesman said.

A hospital spokeswoman said Getz was admitted to the emergency room, but an updated status was not available this afternoon.

The attack occurred just before noon at Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E 58, east of Broken Arrow, Wagoner County sheriff's deputy Eugene Smith said.

Getz was trying to feed the liger when it attacked him, leaving wounds on his chest and neck, Smith said.

A liger is a cross between a lion and a tiger. According to the sanctuary's Web site, the liger is named Rocky.

Calls to the animal sanctuary went to voicemail without ringing. The voicemail message says "a volunteer had an injury. Due to the emotional strain of the situation, Safari's will be closed until further notice."

http://newsok.com/liger-injures-worker-at-animal-sanctuary-in-broken-arrow/article/3316910


Worker attacked by tiger at animal sanctuary


Associated Press - October 29, 2008 9:05 PM ET

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. (AP) - Authorities say a handler at a Wagoner County wild animal sanctuary suffered a puncture wound to the neck after a big cat attacked him during a feeding today.

Thirty-2-year-old Peter Getz was bitten in the upper torso and the neck area at Safari's Animal Sanctuary and flown by medical helicopter to St. John Medical Center, where he is listed in critical condition.

Sheriff's Deputy James Suddath says Getz was able to escape the cage following the attack, then collapsed.

Initial reports said Getz was attacked by a tiger. The Tulsa World reported that a lion-tiger mix named Rocky attacked the handler.

Officials say a Haskell Public Schools class on a field trip at the sanctuary didn't witness the attack and that the facility was evacuated and locked down after the incident.

Information from: The Tulsa World, http://www.tulsaworld.com and KOTV-TV, http://www.newson6.com

http://www.kten.com/Global/story.asp?S=9260770&nav=menu410_3


Big cat injures Wagoner sanctuary volunteer

BY MICHAEL KIMBALL
Published: October 30, 2008

BROKEN ARROW — A 1,000-pound cat attacked a volunteer Wednesday at a Wagoner County animal sanctuary, officials said. The cat was identified as a liger, which is a cross between a male lion and a female tiger.

 

Peter Getz, 32, of Stillwater was airlifted to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa in critical condition with wounds to his chest and neck, a Broken Arrow Fire Department spokesman said. A hospital spokeswoman would not release his condition.

The attack occurred just before noon at Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E 58, east of Broken Arrow, Wagoner County sheriff's Deputy Eugene Smith said. Getz was trying to feed the liger when it attacked.

Calls to the animal sanctuary went to voicemail Wednesday. The message says "a volunteer had an injury. Due to the emotional strain of the situation, Safari's will be closed until further notice." The sanctuary did not return a call seeking comment.

The liger, named Rocky, weighed an estimated 1,000 pounds, according to an undated video from Tulsa television station KOTV-6 posted on the sanctuary's Web site.

In 2003, a bear cub attacked a handler's arms and legs at Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary.

http://newsok.com/big-cat-injures-sanctuary-volunteer/article/3317094


--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org MakeADifference@BigCatRescue.org

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

This message contains information from Big Cat Rescue that may be
confidential or privileged. The information contained herein is intended
only for the eyes of the individual or entity named above.  You are hereby
notified that any dissemination, distribution, disclosure, and/or copying of
the information contained in this communication is strictly prohibited. The
recipient should check this e-mail and any attachments for the presence of
viruses. Big Cat Rescue accepts no liability for any damage or loss caused
by any virus transmitted by this e-mail.