Categories: wild cats

Notorious “Tiger King” Joe Exotic injected staff with big cat tranquilliser when they had the flu

This is another tidbit of exotic Americana; the world of private zoos, exotic cats and equally exotic names and behaviour.

Kirkham and Exotic. Photo: Netflix.

Joe Exotic has been in the news a lot recently because he is serving a 22 year prison sentence for planning to kill Carole Baskin of Big Cat Rescue fame. He hated her because she genuinely fights for big cat welfare whereas he used them to try and make money and acquire fame, correction: notoriety.

It has now come to light that he injected a tranquillising drug meant for his lions and tigers, ketamine hydrochloride, into his misfit employees when any of them went ill with a cold of the flu. It’s true! According to The Sun newspaper.

The story comes from Rick Kirkham, 61, Joe’s former head of TV production who recently spoke on the Investigation Discovery Channel documentary: The Truth Behind Joe Exotic: The Rick Kirkham Story.

Comment: It makes you wonder what the objective was. Was he trying to stop his employees going sick? I can’t see how injecting tiger tranquilliser into a person can achieve that. It should put them to sleep or worse. It is interesting too that Joe Exotic had a television business to promote himself. No surprise really.

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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in a many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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