Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Tony the Tiger to remain at Tiger Truck Stop

Posted By on Wed, Feb 18, 2009 at 9:32 PM

click to enlarge Tony the Tiger

Our lead news story this week, "Cat Fight," was about the Tiger Truck Stop outside Baton Rouge, and the battle between the truck stop's owners and animal-rights activists over "Tony," the caged tiger kept in back of the station as a tourist attraction. (For a longer version of the story, check out Nathan Stubbs' original piece as it appeared in Lafayette's The Independent.)

Nathan informs us today on the paper's blog that Tony is staying put, for now:

Last night the Iberville Parish council cleared the way to allow Tiger Truck Stop owner Michael Sandlin to legally keep his 8-year-old, 550-pound Siberian-Bengal Tiger, Tony, on display at his Grosse Tete business. The council voted 11-1 to exempt Sandlin from a 1993 parish ordinance prohibiting individuals from owning exotic cats. Last year, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, threatened to deny Sandlin a permit to keep the tiger due to a stipulation that he must be in compliance with all local laws. Animal rights activists have long been pushing to have Tony moved to an animal sanctuary where he can be more properly cared for.

The story's gotten national traction; check out this report on Fox News. Or get both sides' POVs at their dueling petition sites, Save Tony and Free Tony.

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