Escaped Lions, Tigers and Cheetahs killed

Thompson released wildcats before suicide

Thompson released wildcats before suicide

It's a sad week in the big cat world as tigers, cheetahs and lions were killed by sheriff's deputies armed with assault rifles.

This occurred in Zanesville, Ohio on October 19 when Terry Thompson, owner of the animals, released them from their cages before committing suicide. At least forty eight animals have been killed and several still roam the neighborhoods surrounding the residence. Eighteen rare Bengal tigers, nine male lions, eight female lions and three mountain lions are among the dead.

A grizzly bear, three leopards and two monkeys were taken to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium after being captured alive. One monkey infected with herpes is believed to have been eaten by one of the big cats.

The Zainville County Sheriff Department, led by Matt Lutz, has a tough job as far as public safety vs. endangered animals is concerned. He released the following statement to CBS news. "There were so many animals running at large that I made the decision that we were not going to have wild animals running loose on our streets. There was no way of telling which animals would lay down, where these animals would end up."

TV personality and former director of the Columbus Zoo Jack Hanna, defended the decision to kill the animals.

Read more on the story here. Supporters are outraged the animals were shot and killed instead of tranquilized.

Here's a video released by the Associated Press.

Terry Thompson has been in trouble with the law in the past. He'd just finished a one year sentence on two federal counts of owning illegal firearms. And back in 2005 he was charged with cruelty to animals, where he was fined $2870 and sentenced to six months of house arrest.

Ohio has no laws governing the keeping of exotic animals. A petition has been started here.

How do the readers at pictures-of-cats.org feel about the keeping of wild animals outside of a zoo setting? How tough should the regulation be? Comments anyone?

I sincerely hope the laws are changed so this tragedy isn't repeated elsewhere.

Elisa

Other source: http://www.peta.org/

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Escaped Lions, Tigers and Cheetahs killed

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May 02, 2012
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Tragic for the wild animals & humans !! NEW
by: Anonymous

That man needed mental help & meds to help think/act rationally. There are signs before a person commits suicide eg, a friend of ours, a retired attorney wasn't able to sleep for several nights & an older caring neighbor kept telling him to seek help. He took his wife to dinner & early next morning, he committed suicide. Survivors include his widow, daughter & countless friends, but as saying goes "You can only lead the horse to water" if a person is also in denial it will be tragic. Sometimes we blame ourselves, when it's their choice to end life.
What a horrible loss of wild animals, specially tigers only 1800 in India he had 18, a sheer 10 % of existing tigers. All killed because of his stupidity. Truly upsetting to all that love cats, large & small.
As mentioned before
1. wild animals DO NOT belong in zoos or kept for entertainment
2.Tougher/stricter lwas need to be set for the protection & well being of these animals if already in captivity
3.People need to be aware wild animals DO NOT belong in cages, why? stress & inbreed

An animal lover/defender
keenpetite
Southeast Arizona (USA)


May 02, 2012
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Tragic for the wild animals & humans !! NEW
by: Anonymous

That man needed mental help & meds to help think/act rationally. There are signs before a person commits suicide eg, a friend of ours, a retired attorney wasn't able to sleep for several nights & an older caring neighbor kept telling him to seek help. He took his wife to dinner & early next morning, he committed suicide. Survivors include his widow, daughter & countless friends, but as saying goes "You can only lead the horse to water" if a person is also in denial it will be tragic. Sometimes we blame ourselves, when it's their choice to end life.
What a horrible loss of wild animals, specially tigers only 1800 in India he had 18, a sheer 10 % of existing tigers. All killed because of his stupidity. Truly upsetting to all that love cats, large & small.
As mentioned before
1. wild animals DO NOT belong in zoos or kept for entertainment
2.Tougher/stricter lwas need to be set for the protection & well being of these animals if already in captivity
3.People need to be aware wild animals DO NOT belong in cages, why? stress & inbreed

An animal lover/defender
keenpetite
Southeast Arizona (USA)


Oct 22, 2011
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When The Measure Is Man
by: Grahame

This is what one gets when the measure is Man.


Oct 22, 2011
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mad as hell
by: Anonymous

I for one think that no one has the right to own any exotic animal just because they can afford it.I think we have to change these laws and change them now I'm so angry that 18 Bengal tigers died because the laws did not protect them ( I have a love for tigers) but I'm smart enough to know they are wild animals and would never even consider owning one my god what are people thinking who do this ! It breaks my heart to know so many beautiful animals died 🙁 . we have to keep pressure on every state not to let this happen again by changing the law and NOT ALLOWING PEOPLE TO BUY OR SELL ANY EXOTIC ANIMAL .please every one join with me and sign the petitions to stop this !. thank Elisa for writing this article we must also highlight the ones who are selling these poor exotic animals .


Oct 22, 2011
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Poor animals
by: Debra Rosier

I hate to say it but, why didn't he just kill himself !!!!! He could have made a call beforehand to tell someone of his intentions and let the animals alone!!!!!! Maybe I am heartless, but I have NO sympathy for this man. I do, however feel soooo sorry for the animals. They had NO choice!!!!


Oct 21, 2011
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Escaped wild pets slaughtered.
by: Rudolph.A.Furtado

The Wild-life laws in U.S.A are very lax and in fact there are more pet tigers in U.S.A then in entire India, the original home of the Asiatic tiger.
Tigers bred in pet zoo's are of no use genetically for release into the wild forests as most of them are inbred.Hence akin to pet cats and dogs they just have "Pet Value" but a very big risk of maintenance as these animals are basically large wild carnivores by instinct and nature although tamed.Hope Wild-life laws are made stringent in U.S.a after this particular bizarre and tragic series of events.


Oct 21, 2011
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You don't want to hear what I think!
by: Michael

You don't really to hear what I think. I'll moderate what I think in this comment.

This would never have happened in Europe. The laws are far to lax in the USA generally with respect to individuals keeping wild animals in captivity in private zoos. It is bizarre and does nothing for conservation. In fact it damages conservation.

Most small wildcats are inbred in zoos and will become extinct in captivity while they are being hunted in the wild - mad.

Thompson should have been shut down ages ago and the animals rehomed. 18 Bengal tigers were shot. There are only 1,400 in the whole world in the wild!

The world is mad. That is what I think.



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