Servals are Not Pets
242 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Believe That Lying Breeder
1. Almost no one ever keeps their “pet” serval after it reaches 1.5 – 5 years of age because they pee constantly, on everything, to mark their territory. This is not about house breaking; it’s 1000s of years of instinct to mark everything as your own.
The following are the next 236 reasons:
Jun 3, 2017 Ontario, Canada: South Georgian Bay OPP reported spotting an African Serval cat in the area of Tiny Beaches Road North and Forest Circle.
Oct. 21, 2010 Youngsville, LA: Authorities say an exotic cat, they think is a Serval, is on the loose, forcing an elementary school to keep its students indoors as officials worked to capture the cat. The Daily Advertiser reports that the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office, Broussard Police Department, Youngsville Police Department and Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries were on the scene. Sheriff’s deputies say the serval, a cheetah-like cat and native of Africa, likely got loose from its owner, who was not identified.
December 18, 2005 Zoo tiger kills man who was fleeing arrest. Gerber said the man was naked when he was found. His clothes had been ripped from his body and the shreds were found in the enclosure too. The man fell about 10m into the tigers’ den. Marks indicated that the body was dragged. More…
December 13, 2005 NJ: Bergen County Zoo’s escaped ocelot is recaptured. Zookeepers believe she had been wandering in and around the zoo’s property, feasting on field mice and squirrels for two weeks. Last week’s snow may have cut off the food supply, forcing the ocelot back toward home, said Tim Gunther, the zoo director.
December 9, 2005 Foley, AL: Joe Higginbotham, owner of Kids Country Zoo said the 2-year-old male tiger became unruly so he killed him. The tiger’s body has been send to a taxidermist for mounting and will be on display here at the zoo,” Higginbotham told the Mobile Register.
December 1, 2005 Greensboro, NC: Sabre’s owner, Megan Morris, could be cited by animal control if the loose Serval turns out to be Sabre again. The feline would then be given to a humane society or wildlife refuge or euthanized if no appropriate home can be found.
November 30, 2005 Delmont, SD: A declawed mountain lion was shot by a hunter. That indicates the cat probably was raised in captivity. (duh) “The hunter claimed it just stood there about 10 feet away from him,” he said. Vandel said it might be difficult to find out where the cat came from because the GF&P does not regulate captive wild animals. “A lot of times, unless there are some local ordinances, they may exist as somebody’s pets – we don’t find out about them for a long time,” he said.
November 19, 2005 Greenwich, NY: Jeff Ash, owner of the Ashville Game Farm was cited by the DEC in 2004 after a wolf escaped from the zoo and was never found. Ash pleaded guilty to a charge that he didn’t provide proper housing for the animal. After Tahan, a 300-pound golden tabby tiger, broke out of her cage the DEC issued Ash a ticket for the same violation. Tahan was sedated with a tranquilizer dart about two miles away from the game farm after she broke through the roof of her cage. PETA sent a letter to the USDA calling for the agency to investigate Ash referring to USDA reports from 2002 and 2003, in which PETA called Ash a “chronic violator of the Animal Welfare Act” because of accusations he failed to maintain clean cages, allowed water troughs to freeze over and failed to keep accurate records.
November 11, 2005 Lisbon: A circus tiger tore off a woman’s arm when she put her hand into its cage to stroke it, a newspaper reported. The 24-year-old Romanian woman worked at the Circo Atlas circus but was off-duty when the attack occurred. Her arm could not be re attached.
October 23, 2005 Knox County, OH: Siberian Tiger Bites Boy at road side zoo. A 10-year-old Columbus-area boy got too close to a Siberian tiger that bit him Knox County Sheriff David Barber said. Ethan Newman of 1011 Colony Way in Perry Township was bitten on the leg in a fenced compound at the Siberian Tiger Foundation off Deal Road, Barber said. The park is 2 miles southeast of Gambier. The foundation is owned by David and Diana Cziraky who charge customers for a “close encounter” in which they enter a compound with Siberian tigers chained to posts, the sheriff said. The boy and his father, Robert, were in the compound with a trainer for a close encounter when the incident occurred.
October 7, 2005 Deluth, MN: A Lake Superior Zoo’s keeper was bitten by a 400-pound Siberian tiger was hospitalized with puncture wounds. The zookeeper was bitten Thursday while he helped move the tiger to its cage from the Lake Superior Zoo’s animal care center. “If you’ve got a tiger attached to your arm, (30 seconds) is a long time. “Getting a tiger to release when it’s semiconscious is quite challenging. The jaws go into a lock position. He’s not about to let go.” The zookeeper who was hospitalized was being held overnight at St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth . Doctors cleaned out his wounds and were monitoring him for nerve damage, Janis said.
September 28, 2005 Alfred, Canada: A tiger was found wandering down the highway. The zoo is trying to figure out how the tiger was able to leave its enclosure. The family-owned and operated Papanack Zoo has been breeding exotic animals and birds since the early 1980s.
September 28, 2005 Lewis County, WA: A 5-year-old boy was tackled by one of his grandfather’s pet tigers. The tiger scratched the boy’s leg and gave him a puncture wound on his foot.
September 23, 2005 Shelbyville, IN: DNR is poised to seize 24 tigers, 6 leopards and 1 mountain lion from Dennis Hill’s Flatrock Exotics because the conditions they reported as being horrific. Dennis Hill was the breeder of Shere Khan. The tigers were found living in a six-inch deep mixture of mud, feces and urine. Free Online
September 16, 2005 Dallas, TX The 4-month-old male tiger was found darting in and out of traffic near the Leary exit on Interstate 30. How the cub ended up on the interstate was a mystery until Thursday. Horn said the tiger’s owner was driving through Bowie County on his way to the Dallas area when the animal escaped from a kennel in the back of the owner’s truck. “The tiger jumped out while the truck was moving.” The owners passed through Bowie County about 1:30 a.m. Monday and did not realize the big cat was missing until they reached Dallas.
September 14, 2005 San Diego, CA: Officials with the San Diego Zoo had some anxious moments Wednesday when one of its more exotic cats got out of its enclosure. A caracal, a reddish brown wildcat native to Southwest Asia and East Africa, escaped when a zookeeper was cleaning its cage and a hose got caught in gate. Zoo officials told NBC 7/39 that animal-care staff then surrounded the caracal with nets, cages and tranquilizer guns. About 45 minutes after it escaped, a zoo worker grabbed the caracal and it was quickly returned to its cage.
September 5, 2005 Coal Valley, IL: A male lion cub born in June at the Niabi Zoo here died Saturday after a door to his exhibit area malfunctioned and fell on him. The cub was half-way between the indoor and outdoor portions of his exhibit area, he said, when a pulley on the 80-pound door that separates the areas broke, causing the door to fall on him. “We are not sure why it broke. We are investigating,” he said.
August 22, 2005 Zimbabwe, Africa: A 50 year old Japanese diplomat was visiting a 49 acres Lion and Cheetah wildlife park when she was attacked and killed by a hungry lion.
August 18, 2005 Mound Valley, KS: (AP) – A Siberian tiger attacked and killed a teenage girl who was posing for photos at a family-run animal facility called Lost Creek Animal Sanctuary. Free Online Update: 11/18/06 Lost Creek Operators Doug and Keith Billingsly cannot engage in any activity for which a license under the Animal Welfare Act is required, until 2011 according to the ruling from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. That includes, breeding and selling, exhibiting or any public use of the big cats. In its 10-page decision issued Nov. 3, the Agriculture Department cited several violations of the Animal Welfare Act at Lost Creek, including allowing the public to have direct contact and pose for photographs with adult tigers. It also did not establish and maintain a program of adequate veterinary care to prevent and control injuries, the ruling stated. The ruling says there were not adequate methods of tranquilization available at the facility. Doug Billingsly’s nephew and authorities had to shoot and kill Shakka after the animal attacked Hilderbrand. The ruling also alleges that the Billingslys did not allow officials with the Agriculture Department’s animal inspection service to inspect the operation on four separate occasions from September 2004 to January 2005, months before the Siberian tiger attacked and killed Hilderbrand. Under the terms of the probation, the Billingslys can be fined $12,600 each if they violate the Animal Welfare Act again. They also were ordered to get rid of all animals subject to the act.
August 15, 2005 Clackamas, OR: Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed a pet lynx after it pounced on a six-year-old girl and began clawing her head. Deputies said the owner reported the pet missing Friday to a Clackamas veterinary clinic, which contacted the sheriff’s office. Attempts to trap the animal had failed. http://bigcatescapesmaulings.blogspot.com/
August 6, 2005 Mayfield, NY: A baby Siberian tiger was confiscated by NY DEC from Steve Salton. The cub was purchased in OH for $1000.00 and declawed and spayed but the owner was in violation of NY license laws and the state is waiting for the cub to heal before placing her in a sanctuary.
August 1, 2005 Brit Spaugh Zoo, KS: Bart the cougar walked through an open door on his cage in the North American section of the zoo and came face to face with a family.
July 23, 2005 Africa: The owner of the Addo Croc and Lion Ranch, Lourens van Straaten died after being mauled by a lion that he had bottle raised. Van Straaten, a taxidermist by trade, was given a suspended fine in 1994 for trading in rhino horn. He was also at the centre of controversy in 2004 when allegations were made about the condition of his lions and whether he had the necessary “performing animal” permits for the public handling of lion cubs. Van Straaten is not the first Eastern Cape lion breeder to fall victim to his charges. In 1996, Shumba Safaris’ owner, JP Kleinhans, was mauled to death by one of his lions at his lodge near Patensie.
July 21, 2005 Pelican Rapids, MN: Dr. Roy Alexander Cordy is in violation of his order to remove all of the exotic animals from his farm and the tiger will be confiscated and killed if he doesn’t find a place for the cat. Cordy, 43, pleaded guilty last year to depriving an animal on his farm of necessary food, water and shelter.
July 8, 2005 Peoria, IL: A Frisco Bros. Petting Zoo employee was injured when a 2-year-old tiger grabbed his hand with her front claws as he was removing a feeding tray from an enclosure. The man was taken to the emergency room, and the tiger was quarantined by animal control for 30 days.
July 6, 2005 East London: Lion Park A bottle raised yearling tiger attempted to rip out the jugular of a 17 year old girl visiting him at the zoo. She was stabilised at the scene and taken to St Dominic’s Hospital where she underwent a two-hour operation to repair the damage to her throat. Free online …
July 1, 2005 Richmond, IA: Craig Perry, 42, of Center Point, Iowa, said a tiger mauled his left leg moments before he was to pose with 14 of the animals for photographs at an arena on Hawthorn Corp.’s property, at 9819 N. Solon Road, Richmond. Perry is the owner of Iowa-based Perry’s Wilderness and Zoo Inc. The facility where the alleged attack occurred is the Hawthorn Corp. which was charged in April 2003 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture with 47 violations of the Animal Welfare Act after 16 of its elephants were exposed to a human strain of tuberculosis. In May 2004, Hawthorn Corp. admitted to 14 animal-welfare violations and agreed to pay a $200,000 fine and remove the elephants from the property.
June 27, 2005 Punta Gorda, FL: Charlotte County gives Lions, Tigers and Bears 6 months to leave or get rid of their lions, tigers and bears for violation zoning laws. Free online…
June 25, 2005 Little Falls, MN: AP- A lion and tiger, two of ten caged cats at Best Buy Auto, owned by auto mechanic Chuck Mock bolted from their cage and pounced on a 10-year-old boy leaving Russell Lala of Royalton, MN., fighting for his life at Hennepin County Medical Center. The child is now a quadriplegic and on a respirator due to the severe injuries to his spinal cord and brain. The lion and tiger were killed. This was the second known mauling at the garage. Free Online…
June 22, 2005 TX: Two rare white tiger cubs seized from a man trying to drive them into Mexico have found a new home in Wise County.
June 21, 2005 OH: Heaven’s Corner owner Kord McGuire recalls the day a run-in with the 200-pound cougar almost cost him his life. “I was transferring Zeb, who I bottle-fed when he was a baby, to my traveling van to go to an educational program for some Cub Scouts in Camden . Suddenly Zeb leaped up and took my arm in his mouth. He also bit me on the side, narrowly missing my kidney. As I fought him off, he went for my foot, shredding the brand new Nike tennis shoe I was wearing. I finally escaped by climbing on top of the cage.”
June 14, 2005 Conway, AR: An unemployed sheet metal worker, facing an order to appear in court and a possible fine, says he’ll go to jail before he gives up his aging pet cougar because of his violations of the exotic pet regulations.
June 11, 2005 Lima, OH: Perry Township resident Bradley Craft, 33, was attacked June 11 by his 3-year-old, 160-pound pet mountain lion, Niko. Health Commissioner David Rosebrock said Craft grabbed the cat’s tail to prevent it from attacking his mother. Niko then turned on Craft, who was building an enclosure for the exotic pet at the time. Craft was bitten in the leg by the animal, Ellis said, adding that he had treated other animal attack victims at his practice. One of those lost a foot because of a pet bear.
June 11, 2005 Underwood, MN: Acrhangel Lion killed after escaping from cage in Otter Tail County. Attempts to contact the owner Mrs. Mears, were unsuccessful. On May 28th she was given 10 days to find homes for the 9 tigers and the lions in the basement her boyfriend David Piccirillo had left behind when he took tiger cubs to Florida for photo ops.
June 7, 2005 Beaverton, OR: Deborah Walding admitted buying and selling of endangered ocelots as part of a plea deal with federal prosecutors. As part of her guilty plea, Walding agreed to pay a $25,000 fine, cooperate with investigators probing animal trafficking and, in a unique twist, to speak publicly about her conviction at two upcoming national exotic cat conferences.
June 6, 2005 Johnson City, TN: A bobcat escaped after his owner died and is being sent to a wildlife rehabilitator in Unicoi county.
June 2, 2005 Princeton, NJ: “I could feel the bones cracking and the warm blood in my eye,” Blakney recalled. “After some time, I decided he finally has me and I should play dead before I pass out. He remembers that the right side of his lower jaw was in about 17 pieces and that a doctor told him it wouldn’t work to try putting them back together. So instead, surgeons made a metal jaw. Blakney quickly pointed out that he didn’t feel the attack was the mountain lion’s fault. “He was just playing out his instinct and was a very good lion through all my years with him,” “I raised him on a bottle from the age of six weeks said Blakney. He had the lion killed so that he didn’t have to have rabies shots and had the mate killed as well so that she wouldn’t hurt anyone, despite the fact that she was not involved. He sold their pelts to his neighbor.More…
June 1, 2005 Long Island, NY: A Long Island man accused of chaining and beating his wife as two leopards crouched nearby had created a zoological horror show at his home. In the house were stuffed endangered animals and rotting animal carcasses. Suffolk police busted Anthony Barone on Sunday for the May 20 assault on Anastasia Barone, 33, and in the process discovered the leopards in a dank, feces-laden room. In an unplugged freezer investigators found the rotting carcass of a lynx. Anastasia Barone told authorities the lynx mauled the couple’s 8-year-old son last winter. After the attack, Anthony Barone chained up the lynx, until it strangled to death. Barone was in the process of buying two black leopards, describes himself as a “big-cat trainer, animal lover”. More…
June 1, 2005 Salisbury, NC: Rowan County Park told 6NEWS a veteran employee was feeding the animals when he was bit on the left leg by one of the park’s new bobcats. The worker was treated and released from the hospital.
May 28, 2005 Underwood, MN: A 16-year-old girl was petting a tiger through the bars of a cage at the Arcangel Wildlife Farm when the tiger bit her finger and clawed her hand. The wound required a dozen stitches and three operations to treat an acute infection. The girl also underwent rabies shots. Underwood woman must get rid of 9 tigers and lion after three people were bitten by cats at her animal farm called Arcangel Wildlife. Mears has 10 days to find homes for the cats or the county will confiscate them.
May 19, 2005 Omaha, NE: A serval on the loose has found a new home. The big cat was captured Wednesday at 59th and Franklin.
May 15, 2005 Kennewick, WA: A 110-pound cougar, likely an escaped pet, was found in the garage of an auto repair shop by a guard after the animal set off a burglar alarm several times. The owner of the shop believed the cougar had been inside during work hours. The animal was removed after being shot with a tranquilizer gun by a Fish and Wildlife Officer.
April 30, 2005 Minneapolis, MN: Tiger attack victim remains in hospital after being attacked by the animals, whose owner, Grant Oly, was in jail on charges he failed to register them. In 2003, a tiger at the site was euthanized after it bit a 31-year-old pregnant woman.
April 25, 2005 Lacey, WA: Serval lost and hybrid found. Donny Roder reported loosing his 40 lb Serval and authorities nabbed a Serval hybrid while looking for the lost pet, but this cat was larger and no owner found.
April 23, 2005 Coon Rapids, MN: A Serval was discovered in the rafters of a garage and taken to the Humane Society. No owner has come forward.
April 21, 2005 Branson, MO: Animal control officials are trying to track a black panther that apparently has been roaming southwest Missouri . McRoy suspects the panther is someone’s pet. Wildlife biologists confirmed from the video that the panther is not native to the region, McRoy said.
April 18, 2005 Jinan, China: A tiger forced out of its pen and mauled a zoo worker to death Sunday in Laizhou city of east China’s Shandong Province, zoo officials and hospital sources confirmed on Monday.
April 12, 2005 China: A desperate father fought in vain to save his eight-year-old son from being mauled to death by a tiger at a zoo in Changde, Central China’s Hunan Province . Mei Changhua climbed over a 3 foot-high barrier to get a better view of the big cats, when a tiger attacked him through the bars of its cage. Despite his father’s efforts, Mei bled to death before reaching hospital.
April 12, 2005 Thackery, IL: A 4-year-old McLeansboro girl is recuperating from injuries sustained Saturday evening when she was bitten by an adult cougar. The animal’s owner, Terry Biggerstaff, 58, shot and killed the animal. Holly Higgins was taken to Hamilton Memorial Hospital where she was treated for a broken arm and lacerations to her hand and arm. Her parents said it took numerous stitches to close the wounds. An emergency room physician asked Holly if she was allergic to anything and she replied, “nothing but big cats”.
March 10, 2005 KIEV: An Amur tiger at Kiev zoo mauled a keeper to death who mistakenly walked into her enclosure.
March 6, 2005 Dent, MN: (AP) Stephanie Truesdell said she was petting a large tiger through the bars of a cage at the Arcangel Wildlife farm near Underwood when the cat gave her a “playful” swipe with its paw and snagged her hand with its claw. Doctors closed the cuts with about a dozen stitches. Since then, an infection set in that required operations to drain the infection, re-close a wound that didn’t heal properly and graft healthy skin to the area. Archangel’s owner, David Piccirillo abandoned the adult cats and headed to Florida to make money off photo ops with the cubs, but was busted at a Motel 6 for not having a FL permit. He left behind his girlfriend with 9 tigers in the yard and lions in the basement in MN.
February 26, 2005 Wellington, FL: A 500-pound tiger escaped from its cage at Panther Ridge Sanctuary located at 14755 Palm Beach Pointe Blvd. Wellington. Judy Berens, the sanctuary owner, stated that Tristan was not her cat and that he was being boarded and cared for by his owner Gail Laviola, who was solely responsible for the escape and that it was Laviola who was cited for escaped captive wildlife, a second-degree misdemeanor, punishable by 60 days in jail or a $500 fine. More than 20 sheriff’s deputies and state wildlife officers armed with rifles were positioned inside and outside the perimeter fence of the facility as the tiger wandered the grounds for more than two hours. Two tranquilizer darts were required to sedate the tiger so that he could be recaptured. Panther Ridge has 16 large cats, including Amos, a black leopard, and Eros and China, two spotted leopards. Some were left with her; others Berens bought. Video Tristen, the escapee & conditions. (South Florida Sun-Sentinel )
February 23, 2005 Pahrump, NV: A pet leopard at Karl Mitchell’s facility bit off the tip of a woman’s finger. February 23, 2005 Sima Valley, CA: A 400 pound tiger was shot after being tracked for 8 days across 29 miles of heavily populated areas of Ventura County. Abby and Emma Hedengran, owners of Wild World/Tiger Creek Foundation were licensed with a 10 year permit to possess 30 big cats as of 2004. When the permit expired they could not renew and had to move with 25 cats to the Moorpark area where they rented a trailer and barn and had all of their cats in transport cages and carriers until Ventura County sent them packing. Federal authorities said charges were filed relating to the possession of exotic cats by Gert “Abby” Hedengran, 56, and his wife, Roena “Emma” Hedengran, 52 in the escape and death of Tuffy the tiger. Their cats were confiscated and relocated to NV. Free Online.
February 12, 2005 Oldsmar, FL: Marcus Cook of Zoo Dynamics, fka Zoo Pros was cited with unsafe handling of captive wildlife, resulting in injury to Sandra Hopps-Caraballo when a white tiger cub he was using for photo opportunities with people and their children bit her on the hand. Cook said the cubs belonged to Ken and Nancy Kraft of Bearcat Hollow who had been indicted on 55 counts of violating the Endangered species Act and the Lacey Act. Marcus Cook was also charged in this grand jury indictment for his involvement. After the cub bit the woman FWC ordered Cook to remove the baby tigerfrom his public petting routine while in FL. Cook said he was sending the cubs back to the Krafts who have relocated from Racine, MN, to SD where the laws are less strict, but his handler said the cubs had been shipped off to a show in Las Vegas. Two children were reported to have been bitten by Cook’s tiger cubs while he was traveling through TX and one of the cats in his side show was reported to have killed a woman by ripping her arm off. ( St. Petersburg Times )
February 12, 2005 Cut and Shoot, TX: Woman mauled in leopard attack at 6912 Dusty Lane at Wildlife Extravaganza, owned by Reginald “Lefty” Parr. Parr owns two leopards, a cougar, several tigers and a lion. There have been two prior incidents where cats escaped from Parr’s facility. In 1998, two tigers escaped from their cages after a trainer had left them open. Both tigers were later shot. In another incident, two cougars escaped from their cages. At that time, the animals were just housed in cages, which violates the Animal Welfare Act, she said. Following the second incident, Parr lost his exhibitor license from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He also was found guilty of several violations of the Animal Welfare Act, including constructing and maintaining housing facilities for animals that are not structurally sound and in good repair, failing to utilize a sufficient number of trained employees to maintain the prescribed level of husbandry practices and failing to establish and maintain programs of disease control and prevention, euthanasia and adequate veterinary care under the supervision and assistance of a veterinarian.
February 7, 2005 Baton Rouge, LA: Eric Drogosch is accused of violating the Animal Welfare Act for denying USDA inspectors access to his facilities, animals and records; providing insufficient housing and care to the animals; and failing to “handle tigers carefully,” which led to a child being injured. “The gravity of the violations alleged in the complaint is great,” the order says. “(Drogosch) has continually failed to comply with the regulations and standards, after having been repeatedly advised of deficiencies.” After five years and the deaths of several tigers USDA finally revoked his license. Free online.
February 4, 2005 Sacramento CA: Sacramento zoo lion kills mate of 15 months. In a zoo there is nowhere to run. Zookeepers describe such killings as rare, but on a national scale, they cannot say how rare. No one, either in industry groups or among federal overseers, keeps nationwide records on captive animals that kill their fellows – or on virtually any other cause of captive animal deaths.
February 1, 2005 Vero Beach, FL: The large golden African Serval, scared and lashing out, was dragging its left leg through the underbrush due to a broken back. Sadly, the animal had to be euthanized. Dangerfield estimated that it was about 2 years old and said it had not been declawed. The cat may have escaped from someone’s private collection, said Dangerfield. (www.tcpalm.com )
February 1, 2005 Winfield, IN: Video and still pictures of the animal aren’t clear enough to determine what it is, Davis said, but the tracks show it’s a feline. Davis estimated it may weigh about 25 to 35 pounds, similar in size to a bobcat – and much smaller than a cougar, which can weigh up to 150 pounds. The animal appeared to be black. Last summer, Davis said, the DNR captured a mixed-breed cat of about the same size and proportions in Hobart , north of Winfield. A dead bobcat was found near Indiana 49 near Chesterton earlier this month by the DNR. The department did not know if it was a wild feline or a former family pet. People sometimes buy exotic animals and then find that they don’t make good pets, he said.
January 30, 2005 Los Angeles, CA: Hollywood Hills residents were under warning today that a serval — a spotted, long-eared African cat that apparently escaped from whoever was keeping it as a pet — is roaming their area. “Keep small children and small pets indoors. Do not leave small children unattended outdoors,” said a Los Angeles Department of Animal Services statement.
January 29, 2005 Sioux Falls, SD: A critically endangered tiger might have to be killed after a man reached through a chain-link fence Tuesday at the Great Plains Zoo and was bitten by the animal. When people are bitten by wild animals, their heads have to be cut off to be tested for rabies, because there are no rabies vaccines approved for use in animals other than cats and dogs.
January 28, 2005 Toronto, Canada: A stripper mauled by a tiger in a Canadian safari park sued for $8,000,000.00 in damages (winning 838k) because her scars meant she could no longer work. Her musician boyfriend, David Balac, won $1.78 million because his injuries left him unable to work as an accordion player. African Lion Safari, near Hamilton, Ontario, west of Toronto, said it is reviewing the ruling, but it insisted the park was safe.
January 27, 2005 Moorpark, CA: Abby and Emma Hedengran, owners of Wild World/Tiger Creek Foundation transferred their cats from a Temecula facility to their new residence and facility in Moorpark. During the move, a Siberian lynx and an adult male Siberian tiger escaped. The lynx was found on the porch of a home near the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and tranquilized. The tiger was later shot and killed.
January 20, 2005 Baraboo, WI: An 8-year-old girl was bitten on the chest by an 80-pound, 7-month-old lion cub at Creature Features Pet Store. The girl had to undergo rabies shots.
January 18, 2005 AR: A 400-pound pet tiger was abandoned in the mountains of north central Arkansas along the Buffalo River. The tiger trekked 60 miles over the next four days, returning to his owner’s home and was then taken to a refuge.
January 13, 2005 Petal, MS: A bobcat is on her way to a sanctuary. The adult bobcat was emaciated and infected by buckshot wounds. Her collar was so tight it embedded in her fur. She was spayed and declawed and trailed a chain, adding to the theory that someone illegally kept her as a pet. Unable to hunt without her claws, Rose nearly starved before someone grabbed her chain and turned her over to a local rescue group. Most animals in her situation don’t end up getting placed like she did. Only one out of 20 or 30 avoid being euthanized.
January 11, 2005 Sacramento, CA: A 400 pound DEAD tiger escaped from the back of a truck as the vehicle swerved on Highway 99 in on the way to a lab for a necropsy.
January 9, 2005 Charlotte, Kings Mountain, NC: Two 75-125 pound tiger cubs were found wandering in a neighborhood full of children. These cats are banned in this area and even after the media has shown their pictures all over T.V. no one has stepped forward to claim them. One cub suffered a broken tail and the other a dislocated pelvis when they were apparently thrown from the back of a moving vehicle with electric cords tied around their necks. The cubs were separated and sent to separate animal shelters that are only equipped for dogs and cats. More.
December 24, 2004 Suffolk County, NY: An 8-year-old boy was attacked by his father’s pet leopard. The boy was scratched on the chest and bitten on the neck, and he required medical treatment.
December 10, 2004 Cassville, MO: At 1:14 p.m. Wednesday, Lisa (no last name) at St. John’s Hospital reported a man with a cougar bite.
December 7, 2004 Copenhagen, Denmark: (AP) A rare Siberian tiger was shot and killed Tuesday after it escaped from a downtown zoo by climbing over a 16-foot electrified fence in southern Denmark.
December 5, 2004 Laredo, TX: Texas circus worker bitten by Bengal tiger. A circus staffer working at a show in Texas was injured after getting too close to the tiger cage. The worker’s hand was bitten and mangled by a Bengal tiger. The tiger belongs to the Great Circus of China. Circus managers say the tiger was properly caged at the time. They added that workers know not to go into the cages.
November 20, 2004 Branson West, MO: An 18-year-old volunteer at Predator World spent the night in the hospital after being bitten on the arm by an 80-pound black leopard as he stood next to the cage
November 20, 2004 St. Augustine, FL: (AP) A 14 year old boy was mauled by a 450 lb tiger that was being walked on a leash at the St. Johns County Fair by the cat’s owner, Curt LoGiudice, owner of the Catty Shack Ranch at Jacksonville. The boy and some friends were watching the tiger being moved to the truck when the tiger went for the boy, hooking the boy’s thigh and pulling the boy under him. That’s when the deputies shot the tiger with the Tasers. The handler tried to get between the tiger and the boy, and after the tiger released the boy, it then bit the handler around his neck and head, Suchy said. At one time, the handler’s head was in the tiger’s mouth, Suchy said. LoGiudice has been questioned four times for attacks: One of his cougars bit a 19-month-old in 1999, while an elderly woman was bitten on the arm by a tiger cub in 2000, a trainer suffered 23 puncture wounds from a cougar and a woman sued LoGiudice after the same cougar attacked her, but Florida Game and Fish officials say that these attacks will not cause Curt LoGiudice of Catty Shack Ranch to lose his license to exhibit the cats. ( Associated Press ) Free Online.
November 10, 2004 Gentry, AR: A tiger pulled the flesh off the right middle finger of Angela Pruitt, 36, of Vian, OK at the Wild Wilderness Drive Thru Safari. The owners of the safari refused to comment on the woman’s injury or provide safety tips for visitors attending the park.
November 10, 2004 Columbia, TN: An 19 month old Serval named Nyla escapes while her owner, Talisa Bowers is out of town when the family dog forced open her gate to get to her food. Nyla had eluded recapture for more than a month last October when she escaped by pushing the door open herself. At this time the declawed Serval is still on the loose with only domestic pets to feed on since she is incapable of capturing real prey. Free Online.
November 3, 2004 Taipei City Zoo: A man who suffers from a mental disorder jumped into the lion’s pit at the zoo. The man climbed the two-story high concrete wall and jumped down into the animal’s home. He suffered only minor bite wounds, unlike the innocent lions, who were anesthetized and quarantined. Free online.
October 2004, CA: Saugus High School hosted a display by Sid Yost of Amazing Animal Actors, who took a lion to a homecoming assembly at the school. Yost has been repeatedly cited and was fined $2,000 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act-including failure to handle animals in a way that ensures public safety and the welfare of the animals-after one of his chimpanzees bit someone.
October 30, 2004 Salisbury, MD:A visitor to the Salisbury Zoo had part of his finger torn off when he approached a cage containing a jaguar.
October 29, 2004 Shawnee County, KS: The Wichita Eagle: A mountain lion was found dead shortly after 10 p.m. Tuesday night in Shawnee County. “It was a young one, only 50 to 60 pounds, and had been declawed and its canine teeth had been filed down,” We have not been able to verify if this animal belonged to a few people in the area who have permits for mountain lions or if it might have belonged to someone who was keeping one illegally without a permit and then dumped it there,” Ladner said. “They did try to make it appear like the animal was crossing the road.” Free online.
October 22, 2004 Bangkok, Thailand: (Reuters) The bird flu toll among tigers at a Thai zoo has risen to 83, but the keepers who looked after them are free of the deadly disease which has killed 31 people in southeast Asia this year, officials said on Friday. http://bigcatescapesmaulings.blogspot.com/.
September 9, 2004 Chicago, IL: A keeper at Lincoln Park Zoo was seriously injured with multiple bite wounds and lacerations after being attacked by a lion in the outdoor exhibit. The incident forced an evacuation of the zoo.
September 8, 2004 Trenton, MN: An employee was seriously injured, with wounds to his face and arm, by a leopard at the Acadia Zoological Park.
August 31, 2004 Ft. Polk, LA: AP 40 soldiers, several trappers and others searched a military installation and surrounding area for a 100 pound, collared pet tiger for several days. Free online.
August 19, 2004 Punta Gorda, FL: (AP) Two lions were running down Highway 17 in the aftermath of Hurricane Charley.
August 23, 2004 The big cat crises was the August 23, 2004 Cover Story of TIME Magazine. Read more in that issue by clicking on the cover. Articles cover the threats of vanishing habitat, their endangered status and the problems associated with them being kept as pets.
July 30, 2004 Queens, NY: 450 pound Cole Brothers Circus Tiger belonging to Adriatic Animal Attractions Escapes in New York. Sighting of the tiger walking along the road and through a park causes multi-car accident that resulted in injuries to four adults and a child. The city was sued for 3.5 million by the victims of the wreck. The circus was restrained from bringing their big cats and elephants to their next gig.
July 27, 2004 Bullitt Co., KY: A two year old Snow Leopard escaped in Shepherdsville, Kentucky from his private owner and has been missing for days. The owner says he would probably run from people, but that kids and pets shouldn’t be let out.
July 14, 2004 Detroit Lakes, MN: A worker with the Arcangel Wildlife Farm was bitten by a tiger who was on display at a local festival. The leashed tiger lunged at the man and bit him on the arm when the man attempted to move him.
July 14, 2004 Little Falls, MN: A 22-year-old woman was bitten by an African lion when she stuck her hand into a cage while visiting a private collection of pet exotic cats kept at an auto dealership owned by Chuck Mock. The woman suffered a severe laceration to her middle finger and cuts on two other fingers.
July 12, 2004 West Palm Beach – Loxahatchee, FL: Tiger escapes private owner in West Palm Beach and eludes authorities. In February 2002, Bobo, the 750-pound tiger mauled a woman who was helping Sipek during a photo shoot at his compound. She was bit on the head. After eluding capture for two days, Bobo was shot and killed.
June 14, 2004 Elgin, Canada: A 10-year-old Toronto boy is in London hospital with serious neck and head injuries after being attacked by a tiger. The owner was showing the visitors his 160-kilogram Siberian tiger and led the tiger out on a leash. When the tiger lunged, the boy turned to run and was attacked in the back of the head and neck, suffering injuries that sent him to Children’s Hospital of Western Ontario in London.
June 9, 2004 Copley Twp. OH: Trucks haul away 29 exotic animals. Pearson’s L&L Exotic Animal Farm loses bid to keep lions, tigers, leopards. This is not the first time the farm has drawn attention from the law and from the media, reported Costen. In 1983, tragedy struck when a 250-pound tiger killed Pearson’s 2-year-old son. 2006 Update: The U.S. Department of Agriculture filed a complaint against Pearson and the L&L Exotic Animal
Farm in 2002, but the process to revoke his license stagnated after the hearing was temporarily halted in September 2003. When the hearing resumed Pearson faced 953 violations of the Animal Welfare Act, from February 1997 through February 2006.
June 2, 2004 Landover Hills, MD: A tiger belonging to exhibitor Mitchel Kalmanson escaped from the UniverSoul Circus after fighting with another tiger and attacked an elephant, biting her on the hip. During the escape, there were several elementary schools attending the performance, and children were walking under the tent in the area where the tiger escaped.
May 30, 2004 Chillicothe, OH: (AP) A man whose pet lioness attacked his daughter has given away his second big cat. Charles Peters had to shoot and kill Sheba on Friday evening after the lioness wouldn’t let go of the arm of Peters’ 33-year-old daughter, Lisa Peters. Charles Peters, who lives about 10 miles east of Chillicothe in southern Ohio, said he has kept big cats off and on for about 20 years without a problem. “I had a tiger that used
to pull my granddaughter around by the diaper,” he said. “Gentle as could be.” But now he and his wife, Marty, say they’re done keeping big cats. Ohio has no state prohibition on keeping big cats as pets.
May 15, 2004 Albuquerque, NM: (AP) A frequent Albuquerque zoo visitor whose finger was found bitten off outside the jaguar exhibit has been banned from the zoo for life. The victim denied missing any fingers. But Darnell says a print lifted from the detached finger said otherwise. He says police went to the man’s house and visually confirmed he was the right person.
May 1, 2004 Bangkok, Thailand: A teenage worker at a Thai zoo died on Saturday after being mauled by six tigers in front of more than 100 shocked tourists, an official said. The zoo hit Thai headlines last year after its sale of 100 tigers to China raised suspicions the animals were butchered and used to make traditional medicine.
April 15, 2004 Hollywood, CA: Elisha Cuthbert was bitten by a cougar and had to be rushed to hospital while filming the hit American TV series 24. She says, “My stunt double was petting the animal, so I put my hand out to stroke it and it bit me, it almost ripped my thumb off. I was rushed to hospital with two puncture wounds, one of which went right through my hand, I had a brace on my hand for five weeks.”
April 15, 2004 Indio Hills, CA: Tiger escapes attacks owner. Police say a man called to say that his 200 lb pet tiger knocked him down and pinned him to the ground. We’re told the man is not hurt, but afraid the tiger could get out again.
April 8, 2004 Long Island, NY: Suffolk County Police are Looking For Exotic Cat On Long Island . The 40 lb. Serval Martha Wentz kept in the basement broke out of the window and has been on the loose while Wentz was vacationing in FL.
April 7, 2004 Knoxville, TN: A woman’s pet bobcat escaped from her home in East Knoxville. The bobcat’s owner says he escaped through the kitchen window of her home. This is the third time she has asked authorities to help her find the exotic pet she calls “Brambles.” “I thought it would be pretty neat to own one,” says Harrison . “As I’m finding out, he’s getting me into a lot of trouble.”
March 31, 2004 Cosby, TN: Michael Pulley has been forced to surrender the lion. Michael Pulley owns a nine-month-old lion named Mischa. He says he didn’t know he needed a permit to have her, but the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency says the law is clear. Pulley faces charges and possible jail time.
Mar. 17, 2004 Massena, NY: (AP) A 4-year-old was hospitalized after her grandmother’s caged cougar mauled her at the woman’s home in northern New York. The girl told her mother the 160-pound male cat reached through the cage and grabbed her. Aubrey Swart was treated Saturday evening at Massena Memorial Hospital for cuts, bruises to the head and an eye injury, and transferred to Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlngton , Vt.
March 11, 2004 Reno, NV: A volunteer needed more than 15 stitches after a declawed leopard at the Sierra Safari Zoo bit her as she reached into the pen for a food bowl.
Mar. 10, 2004 East Limestone, AL: (AP) A cougar, named Dracula, got out of its cage and spent the night on its owner’s 120-acre farm in Limestone County before being sedated and returned to a pen. Owner, Doug Wells, said Dracula ran out of the pen Sunday when a beef shoulder roast bounced out of the cage at feeding time. Dracula ran past Tom Cahall, who helps Wells on the farm, and when Cahall grabbed for the cat’s nape, it bit Cahall’s arm, requiring stitches.
March 5, 2004 The Star: The SARS corona virus initially jumped to humans from the weasel-like civet cat and other exotic animals. “We saw examples where patients were able to transmit it to a large number of people with minimal contact,” A year later – after 8,098 people in 29 countries contracted the disease and 774 of them died, including 44 in the Toronto area – much about SARS remains unknown.
February 20, 2004 Volusia County, FL: Florida Wildlife agents busted a group traveling with lions, tigers, snakes and alligators Friday for not having a permit for the dangerous animals.One man is jailed and the other, James Garrettson, is escorted out of the state.
February 20, 2004 Red Wing, MN: A jury found a Red Wing man guilty of violating a zoning ordinance for keeping up to eight Siberian tigers at his rural residence. four people had been bitten and one cat killed after biting a pregnant woman.
February 19, 2004/Beijing, China: A rare Siberian tiger which escaped from an animal park in China’s northeast, mauling a man on the way, returned by itself after eluding authorities for two days.
February 17, 2004 Dade City , FL: “Pet” cougar is found lounging near neighbor’s pool 3/10ths of mile away from his home. Animal’s possessor retrieves animal without incident, but she will have to appear in court for allowing cougar to escape. ( Tampa Tribune )
February 14, 2004 Lake County, IL: Animal control officials are investigating sightings of what might be a cougar on the loose that is thought to be an escaped pet.
February 13, 2004 Elizabethtown, IL (AP) — A 52 year old Hardin County man who kept exotic animals was apparently attacked and killed Thursday by a pet African lion, authorities said. During the autopsy, a coroner found that the man had suffered numerous puncture wounds and a broken neck. The lion was discovered running loose on the property and was shot and killed by police.Meanwhile a tiger was confiscated by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. It came from a guy who had a tiger for a pet. He pulled up to a stop light in Sandwich with his tiger in the back of his pickup truck. An elderly woman was behind him and she called police. The tiger ended up going to a big cat rescue organization in Colorado. It was 10 months old and weighed 220 pounds.
February 9, 2004 New Orleans, LA: A leopard the family had raised from a cub attacked his owner. A woman was attacked by a declawed pet leopard she kept in a makeshift 10-foot by 10-foot cage behind her house trailer. The leopard bit her on the head, nearly tearing off her ear and ripping the flesh from her scalp. Sheriff deputies and one of the woman’s relatives shot the leopard four times, killing him.
February 6, 2004 Roanoke, VA: Couple’s big cats violate county law, jury decides. District Attorney seeks 2000.00 a day fines.
February 6, 2004 Palm Beach, FL: The Palm Beach Post proclaims that McCarthy’s Wildlife Center may have to close due to lack of support.
February 4, 2004 Omaha NE: Serval is found wandering in a neighborhood. Owners try to convince law enforcement that it is a legal hybrid.
February 4, 2004 Shenyang, China: (Xinhuanet) A wild Siberian tiger has been found dead in Manchu Autonomous County of Xinbin, Fushun City of northeast China’s Liaoning Province. Died from near starvation and then caught by poachers.
February 1, 2004 Fort Wayne, IN: A 150-pound mountain lion that had escaped Saturday night from its owner’s car following a minor traffic accident was shot and killed by police after it became agitated and tried to jump on an officer. Judge orders man to give up cats, but mortgage holder forecloses and man skips town with cats. Judge Stanley Levine ordered Dutcher to pay about $7,400 in attorneys’ fees incurred by the Still Water Place Community Association.
February 1, 2004 Otter Tail County, MN: Authorities are trying to determine what killed several large exotic cats and a camel found dead. The owner of an exotic animal farm says the four tigers and one camel found dead on his property Tuesday weren’t neglected.
January 31, 2004 Fort Wayne, IN: A 4-year-old, 140-pound pet cougar escaped from a car during a traffic accident and was shot and killed by police when he lunged at an emergency worker.
January 27, 2004 Zeeland, MI: City Attorney James Donkersloot said it was illegal for Jarnigan to have the bobcat. “If she didn’t have a license, she was violating the rights of everyone else in the state. They have laws for a purpose and people should respect the laws.”
January 25, 2004 Surry County, IN: LOWGAP A 14-year-old Surry County girl was mauled by a tiger kept in a cage behind the family’s trailer and seriously injured less than two months after a tiger killed a 10-year-old boy at his uncle’s home 40 miles away in Wilkes County. All four tigers were killed on site.
January 22, 2004 Kent County, DE: A family relinquished a bobcat on Jan. 22, after it reportedly bit another human. Because the cat wasn’t vaccinated, it had to be euthanized for a rabies check.
Unknown Date. See 2014 story re: Buckhead, GA lynx attack which mentions a lynx escape documented in 2004, which apparently didn’t make the news.
December 14,2003 Millers Creek, NC: Ruth Bynum’s 400-pound Bengal tiger fatally mauled her 10-year-old nephew after pulling him under a fence and into his cage, authorities said. Cat was kept behind the family’s home in a cage that allowed the family dog to run in and out of the cage. The boy, Clayton James Eller, was shoveling snow Sunday afternoon near the tiger’s cage, an enclosure made of chain link “This little boy got too close, and it pulled him under the fence,” Coroner Howard Laney said. The boy’s uncle, James Marshall Eller, heard Clayton scream and saw the tiger dragging the boy into its cage. Sheriff Dane Mastin said Eller tried in vain to get the tiger off the boy, then ran and got his gun and shot the tiger to death. But it was too late to save the boy. The boy’s mother, Angela Eller, had left the boy in the care of her sister Ruth Bynum, the tiger’s owner, while she went to work, Mastin said. James Eller is the brother of the two women.
December 12, 2003 Marion County, KS: A sheriff killed a second tiger at Chris McDonald’s private menagerie when the animal became aggressive following the killing of his companion.
December 9, 2003 Marion County, KS: A tiger was shot and killed after escaping from Chris McDonald’s private menagerie and killing two dogs and a wolf.
November 11, 2003 Palm Desert, CA: A zoo employee and a zoo visitor at the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens were bitten by a cheetah who was being walked on a leash through the park. The zoo visitor was holding a 2-year-old child on her lap when the cheetah attacked her, biting her calf and thigh. The child was treated for a head injury after she fell onto cement.
November 8, 2003 Frisco, TX: A 4-month-old, 50-pound declawed tiger cub was abandoned and captured by police after a motorist spotted the animal roaming on the side of the road.
November 7, 2003 Rockwell, NC: Steve Macaluso, owner of a private menagerie called Charlotte Metro Zoo, was bitten on the neck by a leopard. Zoo volunteers and employees reported that Macaluso needed dozens of stitches.
October 6, 2003 Golden Valley, AZ: An employee at Keepers of the Wild Zoo was bitten and dragged by a 450-pound tiger as she tried to pet him. She was hospitalized for five days with four puncture wounds on her leg.
Oct. 4, 2003 New York, NY: A 400-pound tiger, along with a 5-foot alligator, was found in a New York apartment owned by Antoine Yates. The tiger had attacked her owner. Yates was later arrested at a Philadelphia hospital where he had fled for treatment of a deep bite wound to his right leg. At various times, eight children had lived in the apartment where the tiger was kept. The Siberian-Bengal mix had been kept in the apartment since he was a cub, authorities said. The owner and his 68 year old mother potentially face 7 years in jail for reckless endangerment.
Oct. 3, 2003 Las Vegas, NV: A 600-pound white tiger dragged Roy Horn, 59, half of the famed duo, offstage by the neck after Horn tapped its nose with a microphone for ignoring a command. He was in critical but stable condition Sunday at a Las Vegas hospital. Five months pass before Horn takes his first steps to recovery.
September 20, 2003 Baghad, Iraq: A U.S. soldier shot and killed a tiger at the Baghdad Zoo after the tiger bit off the finger and clawed the arm of another soldier who was feeding him through the bars of the cage.
September 4, 2003 Alexandria, Egypt: A tiger pounced on a circus trainer during an act, causing deep cuts to his face and a broken jaw.
August 21, 2003 Whetstone Township, OH: A chained 180-pound “pet” cougar snapped his collar, escaped, and attacked a neighbor’s dog, causing more than 100 lacerations.
August 14, 2003 St. Louis, MO: A cheetah at the St. Louis Zoo escaped from her enclosure–by going through a 12-foot wide moat and over a 12-foot high wall–and walked among visitors before being recaptured.
August 8, 2003 Dhaka, Bangladesh: A zookeeper fainted when a tiger escaped from his cage at the Bangladesh Zoo. The tiger roamed freely for an hour.
July 29, 2003 Chisinau, Moldova: A tiger at a zoo bit off a 10-year-old girl’s arm when she reached into the tiger’s cage and tried to pet him.
July 18, 2003 Chihuahua, Mexico: A 12-year-old New Mexico boy, vacationing in Mexico, nearly lost his finger when he was bitten by a jaguar at a petting zoo. The child’s finger received 42 stitches.
July 3, 2003 La Crosse, WI: A tiger mauled circus trainer Bruno Blaszak in front of 400 people during his show at a festival. The tiger charged at Blaszak, knocked him down, and clawed him. His right leg required 30 to 40 stitches.
June 2003 Mead, WA: A Korean actor filed a negligence lawsuit against Cat Tales Zoological Park, a roadside zoo and exotic animal training center, after she was mauled by a white tiger during filming of a story about two of the facility’s tigers. She suffered a cut on her forearm.
June 30, 2003 Calhan, CO: Two tigers severely mauled an employee of Big Cats of Serenity Springs as he entered their cage. The employee was knocked down by one tiger and suffered a mangled leg and scalp injuries. As a result, the tigers were beaten with shovels and later killed.
June 23, 2003 Crossett, AR: A firefighter visiting the Crossett Zoo suffered a deep laceration and lost part of his thumb when he was bitten by a tiger.
June 14, 2003 Dodge City, KS: An adult tiger who was being exhibited by G.W. Exotic Animal Foundation swiped at a young boy, tearing his pants. The tiger was being used for photo ops with the public at the Village Square Mall.
May 28, 2003 Nampa, ID: At a roadside zoo called For the Birds, where visitors are allowed to pet tigers, a toddler was jumped on and licked by a 170-pound tiger. Other zoo visitors and employees have been jumped on and bitten by tigers.
April 28, 2003 Russia: Two lions escaped from their cage, which had been left open, and killed a circus trainer. Police shot and killed the lions.
April 23, 2003 Colmenar Viejo, Spain: A tiger with the Italian-owned International Circus bit off the right arm and caused serious injury to the left arm of a man who approached the his cage.
April 23, 2003 Tokyo, Japan: Several lions attacked and killed an animal handler who was patrolling the grounds at a drive-through facility called African Safari Park.
April 22, 2003 Colton, CA: On Earth Day California Department of Fish and Game representatives found the bodies of 30 tigers and other big cats and 58 dead cubs during a raid on Weinhart’s Glen Avon home, evidently used by his nonprofit organization, Tiger Rescue. The Department of Fish and Game also seized 13 tiger and leopard cubs, ranging in age from a few weeks to a few months.
April 6, 2003 San Antonio, TX: A lion from Wild Animal Orphanage escaped and roamed through a northwest area neighborhood for several hours. An employee required hospital treatment for a fractured pelvic bone and bruised rib when the lion charged and knocked her down as she attempted to shoot the animal with a tranquilizer dart. The lion was shot and killed by four police officers armed with handguns and shotguns.
April 2, 2003 Adair, OK: Several tigers belonging to the International Wildlife Center of Texas and boarded at Safari Joe’s Rock Creek Exotic Animal Park attacked and killed a handler. One tiger grabbed her arm and pulled her into the cage as she was giving them water, and other tigers in the cage pounced on her. Another keeper tried to help, but things got only worse. “The first one grabbed her and the rest of them joined in,” says Mayes County Deputy Charles McGuire. “The other girl who was there grabbed a shovel and joined in and beat the tigers to get them away from her and that’s when they removed the deceased’s left arm.” Bracket was brought to Tulsa for treatment, but she died. These tigers were later reported to be included in James Garretson’s traveling side show called Killer Cat Show which is based in Florida. The tigers were displayed at fairs and used in photo ops with the public.
March 31, 2003 Hennepin, IL: As he entered their pen to shift them to another enclosure, a man was mauled to death by two tigers he kept in a backyard menagerie. Police shot and killed both tigers in order to retrieve the body. This was the second incident at the Second Nature Exotic Cats Sanctuary (see May 26, 2002/Hennepin, Ill.).
March 23, 2003 Sacramento, CA: A keeper at the Sacramento Zoo was hospitalized and treated for puncture wounds to his neck, right shoulder, and left leg after he was attacked by a 325-pound tiger while he was preparing to feed the animal. Another worker beat the tiger on the head with a shovel to stop the attack.
March 22, 2003 Red Wing, MN: A 5-month-old, 40-pound tiger cub at Grant Oly’s Tiger Zone grabbed and bit a pregnant woman on the wrist, causing a puncture wound, and bit a 16-year-old girl. Police searching Oly’s premises found guns, ammunition, and marijuana.
March 16, 2003 Dehiwela, Sri Lanka: A leopard at the Colombo Zoo reached through the bars of his cage and attacked an infant, causing severe head injuries.
February 3, 2003 Jacksonville, FL: A 450-pound tiger with UniverSoul Circus escaped while the cage was being cleaned. The tiger climbed a car, jumped over a fence, headed down an alley, frightened employees at a nearby restaurant, and was recaptured 10 minutes later. 100s of people witness Chad ‘s escape. ( Associated Press, The Florida Times-Union, WjXT-TV Channel 4 ( IND ) Jacksonville )
January 30, 2003 Benimantell, Spain: A lion bit off a British woman’s arm at the elbow as she attempted to pet the animal while touring a zoo.
January 24, 2003 Albert Lea, MN: A malnourished tiger cub was seized from a home in a residential neighborhood after school officials learned that scratches and bite marks on a fifth-grade boy were caused by his father’s “pet” tiger.
January 17, 2003 Hubei Province, China: Two lions at Wuhan Forest Safari Park mauled a keeper to death as he entered their cage to feed them, then escaped and ran loose for hours before being recaptured.
January 15, 2003 Miami, FL: Exotic cat is found along Florida highway. Cat’s “owner” claims animal was stolen ( WSVN-TV Channel 7 (Fox) )
January 8, 2003 Laurens, SC: A 200-pound “pet” cougar was recaptured in a residential neighborhood after he had escaped from a pen 5 miles away and roamed freely for three days.
December 15, 2002 Leesburg, VA.: Animal control was called to help recapture an 80-pound tiger who escaped from a petting zoo and was on top of a car in a parking lot.
November 29, 2002 Kaohsiung City, China: A tiger from an American circus based in Las Vegas bit off a woman’s hand as she tried to pet him during a parade to advertise circus performances.
November 14, 2002 Detroit, MI: A tiger who had been beaten to death and dumped in a field was found by local residents.
November 4, 2002 Red Wing, MN: A teenager reported to authorities that tigers at Grant Oly’s Tiger Zone had bitten him and two adults.
November 3, 2002 Guatemala: A leopard with the King Gitano Circus attacked and killed a 2-year-old girl after she wandered near the animal’s cage. The leopard reached out, grabbed her with his claws, threw her against the cage, and bit her. She died of a fractured skull.
October 28, 2002 Las Vegas, NV: Neighbors became frightened and alerted animal control when they spotted two tiger cubs running loose on a neighbor’s rooftop. The cubs had escaped from the homeowner’s private menagerie.
October 17, 2002 Southport, FL: A 500-pound African lion pounced on, dragged, and mauled his owner at a roadside zoo called 77 Zoological Park as the owner stepped into the cage to pose for a picture. The lion ripped a hole in his throat, pulled his right eye out of its socket, severed tendons in his neck and chest, tore his skin, and bit through his flesh to the bone. The man spent weeks in the hospital and was in critical condition for 11 days. He loses 80% of eyesight. He has trained large animals since age 12 when he began training bears in circus in Europe.
October 11, 2002 Jackson, NJ: The 70-year-old husband of “tiger lady” Joan Byron-Marasek was suddenly attacked by a tiger at her controversial preserve as he was feeding the tigers. He suffered head injuries, and his arm was nearly severed.
October 9, 2002 Potsdam, Germany: A tiger escaped from a circus, forcing fearful residents to stay indoors for more than two hours. A park was sealed off and 20 police officers and veterinarians searched for the tiger, using a tranquilizer gun to recapture her.
October 4, 2002 Leona, TX: A man was severely mauled by a 400-pound tiger at the Perrydise Exotic Animal Ranch when he stuck his arm in the feeding opening of the cage to touch the animal, resulting in amputation of his arm just above the elbow.
September 28, 2002 Bloomington, IL: A 400-pound tiger was shot and killed by police after he escaped from a trailer at a truck stop and hid in bushes near a residential area for nine hours. Local police spent $9,000 attempting to recapture the tiger. This same tiger mauled a 7-year-old girl in Hennepin, Ill. (see May 26, 2002).
September 22, 2002 Mayagüez, Puerto Rico: Police officers shot and killed a jaguar after she escaped from her cage at the Mayagüez Zoo. The jaguar, found hiding in a tree, made several attempts to attack the officers before they gunned her down.
September 22, 2002 Quitman, AR: Four African lions, believed to have escaped from a nearby exotic animal farm, were shot and killed after running loose for several days, terrifying residents.
September 20, 2002 Scotts Valley, CA: A declawed 150-pound tiger, who was being walked on a leash by Zoo to You at a school assembly with 150 children at the Baymonte Christian School, suddenly lunged at a 6-year-old boy and grabbed the child by the head with her jaws. The boy was wrestled away from the tiger by the principal and airlifted to a medical center where he received 55 stitches for two cuts to his scalp. A psychologist gave counseling to the terrified children who witnessed the attack.
August 23, 2002 El Arish, Egypt: A circus trainer was taken to a hospital for treatment after his lion lashed out as he attempted to play with him. The lion severely wounded his hand.
August 14, 2002 Akron, OH: A 30-pound “pet” serval-hybrid escaped and ran loose for several blocks, worrying neighbors who were concerned for the safety of children playing outdoors.
July 22, 2002 Cozumel, Mexico: A 13-year-old Florida resident vacationing in Mexico was mauled by one of two lions displayed in a cage as an attraction at a restaurant. The girl was petting the lion when the lion bit her arm and refused to let go for five minutes. The girl’s arm was severely torn above the elbow and required more than 300 stitches.
June 9, 2002 South Africa: Three lions mauled a tourist from Texas as she posed for a picture in their enclosure at a game lodge. She suffered injuries to her arm, shoulder, and leg and was hospitalized for 10 days.
May 26, 2002 Hennepin, IL: A 7-year-old girl was bitten by a tiger at a private menagerie as she attempted to pet the animal. The girl required 110 stitches and three months of therapy.
May 22, 2002 Mayagüez, Puerto Rico: A 12-year-old boy was scratched on the hand by a jaguar at the Mayagüez Zoo when he reached inside the jaguar’s cage.
May 15, 2002 Romania: A 3-year-old girl was mauled by a 9-month-old lion tied up outside of a shop. The girl, who had tried to play with the lion, required hospital treatment for cuts to her chest, belly, and buttocks.
May 12, 2002 Tampa, FL: A 350-pound African lion at Busch Gardens ripped off the arm of a zookeeper standing next to the lion’s cage while she was giving a private tour to her family. The attack occurred shortly after the zookeeper had fed the lion pieces of meat during training exercises. ( Tampa Tribune )
April 28, 2002 Pickens County, SC: According to the Post & Courier, a “pet” tiger was quarantined for biting an 8-year-old boy in the leg after the tiger had been given a bath. The tiger is normally kept in a metal cage in the backyard.
March 6, 2002 Vienna, Austria: While visitors watched, three jaguars at the Schoenbrunn zoo attacked and killed an employee as she was preparing their food and injured the zoo’s director when he tried to rescue the zookeeper.
February 15, 2002 Pahrump, NV: Animal exhibitor Karl Mitchell shot and killed one of his tigers after the animal became frightened and escaped his control while being moved to a new residence.
February 3, 2002 Loxahatchee, FL: A woman was hospitalized in critical condition with a skull fracture after she was attacked and bitten by a 750-pound declawed tiger. The woman had been painting in preparation for a photo shoot at Steve Sipek’s private animal compound. ( Associated Press & Palm Beach Post )
January 24, 2002 Gentry, AR: Two animal handlers at Wild Wilderness Drive Thru Safari were attacked while transferring cougars between cages. One handler received multiple bites on an arm and leg, and the other was bitten in the face.
January 16, 2002 Pickering, Canada: A 500-pound tiger used for photo ops with small children and strippers snapped her tether, escaped, and wandered in the streets near Toronto, alarming residents. More than half a dozen police cruisers and a helicopter were dispatched to locate and recapture the tiger.
December 29, 2001 Leona, TX: A 6-year-old boy was taken to the emergency room after being attacked by a tiger at the Perrydise Exotic Animal Ranch. The child sustained severe lacerations to his face and hand when a tiger reached through the cage and clawed him as he was photographing the animal.
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