Local News

Local exotic animal sanctuary houses 2 tigers removed from ‘Tiger King’ zoo

SAN DIEGO – The Alpine exotic animal sanctuary Lions Tigers & Bears is providing care to two tigers that were removed from a zoo featured in the Netflix documentary series “Tiger King.”

Nearly 70 protected animals including lions, tigers, lion-tiger hybrids and a jaguar were seized from Jeffrey and Lauren Lowe’s Tiger King Park in Oklahoma, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. Federal officials allege the Lowes were violating the Endangered Species Act and had been previously cited for failing to provide the animals appropriate veterinary care, nutrition and shelter.

In a news release, Lions Tigers & Bears said members of its team traveled with three rescue haulers to help transport the animals in conjunction other sanctuaries and the Justice Department.

“I was honored to bring a team to Oklahoma to assist with this significant animal rescue operation,” Lions Tigers & Bears founder and director Bobbi Brink said. “With several accredited sanctuary teams working together with the federal officials, it was an efficient and seamless operation.

“Our priority was relocating these big cats to accredited sanctuaries where they will receive proper veterinary care, diet, shelter and habitats while the court decides what’s next.”

According to the sanctuary, both tigers will be quarantined for a minimum of 30 days and provided care by its veterinarians. The 93-acre sanctuary currently houses some 60 rescued animals from lions to grizzly bears to horses, its website shows.

The Justice Department plans to seek civil forfeiture of all animals and their offspring.

In a statement, Jean E. Williams, the acting assistant attorney general of the department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division, said the seizure “should send a clear message that the Justice Department takes alleged harm to captive-bred animals protected under the Endangered Species Act very seriously.”