About FTTT   7 comments

Photo By & Used With Permission From M. Haik / ©M. Haik

Free Tony The Tiger is dedicated to raising awareness for Tony and to securing his release to an accredited big cat sanctuary where he can receive the care, home, diet, enrichment, medical care and respect he deserves. It is also the mission of Free Tony The Tiger to bring attention to the severe problem of privately owned tigers in the United States.

There are more tigers in captivity in the United States than left in the wild. We can help stop the abuse and exploitation of these magnificent cats by supporting Big Cat Public Safety Act (H.R. 3546)

This bill would prohibit private possession of big cats except at highly-qualified facilities like accredited zoos where they can be properly cared for and safely managed.

Tony represents one of the estimated 5,000 plus privately owned tigers in the United States whose numbers are greater than tigers in the wild. Captive U.S. tigers are used in roadside zoos and attractions, photo ops and exhibitions, entertainment shows, pseudo-sanctuaries, bred for profit or are owned as “pets.” Others end up in canned hunts or on the black market.

There is no conservation value in privately breeding tigers. The only sanctioned tiger breeding program in the United States is the Species Survival Plan in which AZA accredited zoos participate. Not all animal rescue centers and sanctuaries are what they claim to be. A true sanctuary would never buy, sell, trade, breed, or cart their animals to malls, fairs, etc.

Please view these very important and informative videos from Big Cat Rescue – Tampa Florida addressing this issue.

Carole Baskin, Founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue of Tampa FL , the world’s largest accredited sanctuary, that is devoted entirely to exotic cats speaks out about:

1. Where do big cats go when they are no longer profitable cubs?
2. If the good sanctuaries are full, where do the big cats go?
3. Should we be building bigger and more sanctuaries for the unwanted cats?
4. What is the best way to prevent the abuse of lions, tigers and other big cats?
5. Does banning private possession of exotics work?
6. Who tracks maulings, killings and escapes by tigers and other big cat species?
7. Do USDA and state inspections make sure breeders and dealers are being humane?
8. When did the big cat crisis in America start?
9. Are there laws to prevent exotic cats from being traded for their meat, skin and bones?
10. How is the public to blame for the worst acts toward tigers and their cubs?
11. What happens to breeders, dealers and other wild animal exploiters when they run out of money?
12. What are some of the most lax states when it comes to wildcat standards and enforcement?
13. Why doesn’t the government do something about all of the abuse of tigers, lions, leopards, jaguars & other big cats?
14. Are there illegal activities operating in the shadow of legal uses of tigers?
15. What kind of tracking is done and what needs to be done to end the abuse of exotic wild cats?

Tigers in The U.S. Courtesy of Big Cat Rescue – Tampa FL

Backyard Tigers of America Courtesy of Big Cat Rescue – Tampa FL

Tiger cubs are exploited and abused in money-making ploys disguised as “educational shows.” There is nothing educational about displaying cubs in hands-on exhibitions and photo ops – but it is how individuals and pseudo-sanctuaries capitalize on the appeal of these baby tigers and other big cat cubs to lure the public into their unscrupulous schemes. Exploiting tiger cubs by allowing the public to interact with them is not educational, but dangerous and misleading, as well as harmful to the cubs. The real life horrors these cats face once they shed their “cuteness” and turn into 300 to 500 lb. predators are years of captive life in deplorable conditions. Please don’t contribute to this abuse by engaging in these exhibitions, supporting or promoting them.

Cute Tiger Cubs – Robbed from the Cradle Courtesy of Big Cat Rescue – Tampa FL

From WWF: Tigers Among Us

View the WWF Report “Tigers Among Us” at http://www.worldwildlife.org/species/finder/tigers/captive-tigers/

Tigers Among Us
is an updated review of the 2008 TRAFFIC report Paper Tigers?: The Role of the U.S. Captive Tiger Population in the Trade in Tiger Parts. For a copy of the full report, go to: http://www.worldwildlife.org/species/finder/tigers/captive-tigers/

Watch:  The Tiger Next Door, the acclaimed documentary by Camilla Calamandrei

What You Can Do To Help Tigers

Do not patronize or support events that exploit tigers and tiger cubs (or any big cats.)

If there’s an online article about a show coming to a mall, fair, or a circus employing animal acts, comment on it voicing your concern for the animals and your opposition to such shows. Share the information via Twitter and Facebook and ask others to do the same. You can also contact the venue to tell them you do not support such exhibitions of animal cruelty and abuse. If you do see a traveling exhibit, whether it be adult tigers or cubs, report it to info@BigCatRescue.org

Visit Big Cat Rescue – Tampa FL’s CatLaws.com for actions YOU can take to save big cats and cubs. http://bigcatrescue.org/cat-laws/

Share links to videos and articles about tigers to network the plights they face both in captivity and the wild – some of which have been included in this post.

Support true accredited sanctuaries that provide caring proper homes for big cats such as:

Big Cat Rescue – Tampa FL http://www.bigcatrescue.org

The Wildcat Sanctuary http://www.wildcatsanctuary.org/

Wildcat Haven http://www.wildcathaven.org/

Facilities that breed, buy, sell, force their animals to perform and exhibit them off site are just profiting from these animals and should be avoided.

Such majestic and magnificent cats like tigers should be respected and protected and it is up to those of us who care about Tony and tigers like him to continue to be a strong voice for them. Thank you.

The Plight of Tigers in The US – The Massachusetts School of Law

Links For Tony:

ALDF Site For Tony:

ALDF Timeline:

Join Tony’s Facebook Page:

Free Tony The Tiger On WordPress:

Tony’s Story:

Follow Tony on Instagram:
https://instagram.com/tonythetruckstoptiger/ (@TonyTheTruckstopTiger)

Follow Tony On Twitter:
http://twitter.com/#!/FreeTonyTiger (@FreeTonyTiger)
http://twitter.com/#!/TonyTiger2000 (@TonyTiger2000)

Tony On Youtube:

Sign Tony’s Change.org Petition:

Posted November 19, 2009 by Free Tony The Tiger

7 responses to “About FTTT

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  1. I have been keeping track of this story on facebook, youtube, and Big Cat Rescue’s web page. I post and share this story often. I blog thru WordPress.com also and added a link to your page from mine; although probably should have asked first, I am new to WordPress and didn’t think to ask your permission first. Hope you don’t mind as tigers are a passion of mine and I want to help spread the word on this cause as well, and appreciate the work you’ve put into helping free Tony the Tiger.

    • Thank you so much for caring about Tony. I definitely appreciate you adding the link to his page on yours – it’s important to continue networking Tony’s story so more people know of his situation and more support is gained for Tony.

  2. The governor’s contact link is now working after being down most of yesterday. PLEASE email him about Tony. You do NOT have to be a resident of his state or a US citizen.

    As you fill in contact info you will come to PARISH – click that on and scroll down to the bottom where y…ou will see “out of state”. We have to flood his office with emails. Include please the most recent video of Tony showing how much he has declined.

    We have to get this tiger out sap. You might also add an investigation of the LDWF is in order for even allowing the permit in the first place. Let’s all ROAR as loud as possible this weekend and every day until Tony is romping in a decent sanctuary. Thank you very very much – that is not from me, but from Tony !!!! ROAR and ROAR again !!! Please share with everyone.


  3. I have contacted Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge,in Arkansas,about Tony. I hope to hear from them soon!

  4. Please know that while WSPA opposes the use of animals for entertainment when such use is contrary to the animals’ nature, or may involve suffering or adversely affect the animals’ welfare, we primarily work outside of the US, in developing countries; and rarely work on individual cases or in areas that we are not experts in, such as large cats.

    However, I have contacted the organization that is leading the charge on this battle, one of WSPA’s Member Societies: Big Cat Rescue. According to Ms. Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue, they are willing to provide a home for Tony. They have informed PETA, HSUS, and Born Free of this and of their efforts to help Tony. Unfortunately, they cannot legally force Michael Sandlin – the truck stop owner – to give Tony up and they will not pay for Tony, as this will only encourage him to purchase another tiger and fuel the trade.

    The Iberville Parish has allowed Michael Sandlin to keep Tony at the truck stop. Read the ordinance at http://www.bigcatrescue.org/images/abuse/PDF/TonyTigerOrdinance.pdf. Now he must obtain a permit from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Carole and her team suggest contacting the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and ask that they not issue a permit to the Truck Stop and that they send Tony the tiger to Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, FL.

    • Thank you for your comment regarding Tony. Just some clarification to your reply:
      The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries granted the permit To Tony’s owner on December 14, 2009.

      According to the Louisiana state laws it is illegal to buy Tony. See: http://www.bornfreeusa.org/b4a2_exotic_animals_state.php?s=la

      C. 1. Except as provided herein, it shall be unlawful to import into, possess, purchase or sell within the State of Louisiana, by any means whatsoever including but not limited to transactions conducted via the internet, any of the following species or its subspecies of live wild quadrupeds, big exotic cats, or non-human primates, domesticated or otherwise (hereinafter ”listed animals”):

      Black bear (Ursus americanus);

      Grizzly bear (Ursus arctos);

      Polar bear (Ursus maritimus);

      Red wolf (Canis rufus);

      Gray wolf (Canis lupus);

      Wolf dog hybrid (Canis lupus or Canis rufus x Canis familiarus);

      All non-human primates;

      The following big exotic cats:



      Leopards (including, but not limited to Snow Leopard and Clouded Leopard);



      Cougars or mountain lions (Felis concolor);

      All subspecies of the above listed exotic cats;

      Hybrids resulting from cross breeding of the above listed exotic cats

  5. Hello,

    Have you tried contacting PAWS in Calif.? The Performing Animal Welfare Society is a huge sanctuary that has rescued many animals such as Tony. The founder, Pat Derby is a fireball to say the least. This week they are busy with their annual Summit for the Elephants, but go to their website for contact information. pawsweb.org. This organization managed to rescue a tiger in Mexico, I’ll bet they could do the same for Tony. I will keep this poor beautiful animal in my thoughts and prayers. He will be saved.


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