These pictures are courtesy of Connie Stol Tarvin who visited Tony on July 21, 2011. Please also read Connie’s comments (below) on the pictures – and Thank you Connie for sharing them with us and caring about Tony. All photos © Connie Stol Tarvin and used here with her permission.
There are huge signs along the freeway announcing the Tiger Truck Stop, and I asked my son-in-law to stop so we could see him in person.
1. This is the cement block house in which Tony lives. If you can zoom into the doorway, you can just see him lying down inside.
2. At one end of his wire enclosure, there is a rather small round tub of water. I could only guess this was for drinking because it did not appear big enough for him to get into and romp around. Note it is also on cement.
3. Between Tony’s cement house and the tub of water is this pole with a small circular platform in a small grassy area. I cannot imagine Tony comfortably fitting on that little platform, and there is nothing there for him to do if he did manage to get up there.
4. After we had been there a few minutes, Tony came out of his cement block house. It was such a hot day, I cannot imagine how hot it was inside his little house. The entire area stinks to high heaven! I can only guess that the hose is used to wash off the cement, so the urine is just washed into the dirt and grass. I do not know what is done about the feces. In any case, it is not a sanitary situation.
5. Tony simply paced back and forth on the cement.
6.To the right side is an opening that would allow him to go out on the small grassy area where the small platform on a pole is located. If he walked further, he could get to the tub of water located on another slab of cement.
7. Tony made no move to leave this cement area. It was almost as if there was an invisible door over the opening. He simply paced back and forth here in front of his cement house.
8. I noted this truck in the parking lot showing someone was there from the Iberville Parish Animal Control, J. Mitchell Ourso, Jr., “Parish President” is written on the truck cab door. It also shows a picture of a dog and cat; nothing there about tigers.
Two men entered the outer fencing between us and Tony. I believe one of them was with Animal Control, but do not know that for certain. As one man scratched Tony’s chin through the fence, he commented about how nice it was to have such a big cat here for people to see. I beg to disagree!
Tony’s conditions are worse than I imagined, stink something terrible, are unsanitary, unhealthy, and totally nonstimulating for him. It was sad to see poor Tony in such deplorable conditions!
I implore the Louisiana Dept of Wildlife & Fisheries to stop giving an exception to Mr. Sandlin regarding the laws of the state and the keeping of wild animals. Tony has been living in these horrible conditions his entire life; and he deserves to be freed to a big cat facility that can properly care and provide for all of Tony’s needs!