Rescued tiger leaves Fort Worth for new home in Colorado

Rescued tiger leaves Fort Worth for new home in Colorado

By Deborah Ferguson
updated 5:30 p.m. ET, Sun., March. 15, 2009

Hamilton, the Bengal tiger rescued last month from Hamilton County, left Fort Worth this morning for his new home outside Denver, Colo. The Humane Society of North Texas had custody of the tiger while it searched for a permanent home. The transfer to the Wild Animal Sanctuary happened about seven this morning.

HSNT Facilities Manager Charles Thompson said everything went perfect with the transfer and that the only thing that would’ve been better is to have been able to put Hamilton on a leash and walk him out.

Thompson said the nearly 300 pound tiger was sedated, then put on a gurney that was rolled into a cage inside an enclosed trailer. Hamilton was given just enough sedation to get him to the trailer safely, but Thompson said the tiger would be awake for the 13-hour drive to the sanctuary in Kennesburg, Colo.

While he was sedated staff members implanted a microchip, Thompson said.

Hamilton arrived at the Fort Worth shelter last month after the sheriff in Hamilton County discovered him hungry and living in poor conditions. The tiger weighed 250 pounds, half of his normal size. He’s gained weight, said Thompson, and just how much will be determined when he arrives at the Wild Animal Sanctuary.

The HSNT also looked at a site in Texas for Hamilton but chose the Colorado location where he’ll have plenty of room to roam, explained Thompson.

So is there any sadness at the departure of such a celebrity cat? “Yeah, there is. They’re missing him already,” described Thompson

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