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(Miami Herald)   Neighbors permit man to keep his pet cat, even though it weighs 900 pounds and can haul animals up in to trees   ( divider line
    More: Florida  
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12297 clicks; posted to Main » on 20 Oct 2002 at 5:40 AM (15 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

61 Comments     (+0 »)

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2002-10-20 01:01:56 AM  
Merkel's cat is one of about 1,000 tigers licensed by the state, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which regulates exotic animals.

WHAT???? 1000!!! That's scary...
2002-10-20 01:18:41 AM  
A tiger? In Florida?
2002-10-20 01:30:18 AM  
Should put the tiger in charge of the voting booths... any more screw-ups and, "you're dinner!"
2002-10-20 02:47:25 AM  
Screw that. These happy neighbors obviously haven't watched enough of Fox's "When Animals Attack". If I was in the neighborhood, I'd say, "The tiger has to go." If it didn't, then I'd move away. I had a relative whose dogs would continually find ways out of the fenced backyard. I know the tiger is in a tighter cage, but it'll find a way to escape someday. It's only a matter of time.
2002-10-20 02:51:38 AM  
I own a pet tiger. Wait, no I don't, that's just an empty milk carton.
2002-10-20 05:47:27 AM  
"I know the tiger is in a tighter cage, but it'll find a way to escape someday. It's only a matter of time."

I agree, which is why we need to close all zoos as well.
2002-10-20 05:55:54 AM  
And don't forget about shooting the animals. Close the zoos and put a bullet in the skull of every animal there. Then we would be safe.
2002-10-20 05:58:54 AM  
Lisa: According to your logic, this rock keeps tigers away.

Homer: Hmmmm. How does it work?

Lisa: It doesn't.

Homer: How so?

Lisa: It's just a rock. But I don't see a tiger anywhere.

Homer: Lisa, I want to buy your rock.
2002-10-20 06:03:34 AM  
Thats Grrreat!!!
2002-10-20 06:04:56 AM  
haha the only tigers near my house are at a theme park about 75km away

damn things get girls going all 0o0o0o0o0o0o0 over em. HRMMMMMMMM theres an idea.

*goes and buys a tiger*
2002-10-20 06:07:43 AM  
Damn, I thought it would be an actual pet cat

like those fatasses on cliff yablonski's site
2002-10-20 06:09:27 AM  
Ugh, I hate that all Knight Ridder papers use the same website template. Am I looking at the Merc or the Herald? Who can tell. I say ship the tiger to the webmaster's office.
2002-10-20 06:10:58 AM  
I thought I had a fat cat at 20 pounds, so I wanted to see this chunker, BUT NO...

damn tiger.
2002-10-20 06:15:52 AM  
I'm thankful this is happening in Florida. I'd be annoyed if it were California; you're not allowed to keep ferrets in California...

/ferret rant
2002-10-20 06:20:30 AM  
Scrotar, I had thought you can't keep ferrets in California, but the PetCo in El Cerrito (510-528-7919) sells all sorts of ferret supplies, including ferret food.
2002-10-20 06:21:29 AM  
Damn, I always liked those bigass cats, the kind that purr all fark'n loud and always want to be petted.

This is just stupid tiger. Owner and cat should be shot.
2002-10-20 06:38:20 AM  
RandomBob - I live near a PetCo, also. I noticed the ferret head shop, but I also noticed the lack of real live ferrets.

Generally speaking, it is illegal to import or own a ferret in California.

SB 1093 concerning California's treatment of ferrets was introduced a while back, and was passed in the Senate. It has yet to be passed by the assembly, but they've found the time to amend it a few times.

The bill was to legalize ferret ownership effective January 1st, 2002.
2002-10-20 06:43:27 AM  
I thought it was Panthers (or maybe pumas?) that hauled its food into trees?
2002-10-20 06:45:10 AM  
Scrotar, thanks for explaining about SB 1093. PetCo appears to have considered that one a sure winner.

Unfortunately, we probably all live near a PetCo. A ferret head shop? I live near Telegraph Ave in Berkeley, and I still can't imagine a ferret head shop.
2002-10-20 06:45:28 AM  
First off, I don't think tigers can carry animals into trees. That's leopards.

Secondly, caging animals like a tiger is cruel. Some animals don't seem to mind being caged, but others, such as tigers, will exhibit signs of mental illness such as pacing. The "safari" type zoos are better, where the animals that need to have space do have space to roam around.

Why the hell would anyone want or need to keep a pet that, in its natural state, would eat them?
2002-10-20 06:51:02 AM  
Poor Pretty Kitty.... The owner should be shot and fed to the tiger and then the tiger should be relocated to its natural habitat.

I hate people.
2002-10-20 06:55:41 AM  
James M. Cain
2002-10-20 07:08:07 AM  
Relocate the tiger to his natural habitat so the local villagers can shoot him when he goes after their livestock.
2002-10-20 07:33:08 AM  
The local villagers should be turned out of their homes and massacred. a mass grave should be fitting.
2002-10-20 07:37:28 AM  
If I had a tiger, I'd feed it a steady diet of PETA members.
2002-10-20 07:41:55 AM  
I know I'm not the only one who feels sick about this hick Floriduh cop keeping an undomesticated predator caged up back of his yard so he can truck it around on weekends and make some extra cash to spend at the local strip club.

Move the cat to a wildlife preserve and have the owner neutered.

2002-10-20 08:09:09 AM  
TheOmni- that's disgusting. YOU should be shot
2002-10-20 08:10:46 AM  
BryB and you should go away and look up sarcasm in the dictionary.
2002-10-20 08:18:37 AM  
It's a cat...a big cat...but of the feline family nonetheless. It's not like he's keeping guatamalan refugees in his basement making sneakers or turning tricks...people need to sort out their priorities...Technomancer has the right idea...
2002-10-20 08:44:45 AM  
To some neighbors, the cat has become a welcome fixture on the block...gets a thrill hearing the female tiger roar for her breakfast in the morning.

[image from too old to be available]

-Wonder how she would like this "welcome fixture" with her morning coffee?

"These are animals who might roam 50 miles a day. . . . That's like the equivalent of taking us and putting us in a box"

[image from too old to be available]

-IMHO confining a wild animal to a small space is inhumane.
2002-10-20 09:01:20 AM  
I want a tiger. I could feed it shovels full of dead kittens.
2002-10-20 09:16:03 AM  
SOD THAT! Now, because of this 'informative' news article, there are going to be countless numbers of curious kids who may or may not stick their curious little arms into the tigers cage!

OBSERVATION. The cop must have one huge pooper scooper.
2002-10-20 09:31:00 AM  
Im playing with my pussy right now.
2002-10-20 09:35:19 AM  
''These are animals who might roam 50 miles a day. . . . That's like the equivalent of taking us and putting us in a box,'' Winikoff said.

hmmm.... (looks at cubical at work) So... those uppity tigers think they should be treated better than me, huh?

Where's my 50 miles of roaming territory and a gazelle to kill and drag into a tree?
2002-10-20 09:39:44 AM  
Img src="">

Big Pussy
2002-10-20 09:41:27 AM  
[image from too old to be available]

Big Pussy,again...sorry.
2002-10-20 10:55:51 AM  
"These are animals who might roam 50 miles a day.... That's like the equivalent of taking us and putting us in a box," Winikoff said.

It's not a frikkin' huma. It doesn't say "Oh no, I'm in a box." It just wants to get fed.

PETA = evil dumbasses
2002-10-20 11:35:58 AM  
I_Hate_Iowa, you are at the extreme end of the bar and PETA is at the other.
I prefer the middle ground.
Big Cats were not born to be confined. I agree that once one is, it should not be returned to the wild unless it is properly reintroduced.
2002-10-20 11:46:07 AM  
There's a guy, lives down the street from me. He has 3 mountain lions, a black panther and 2 African cats that are bigger than houscats but not much. I forget what their called. I live in CA.
2002-10-20 11:49:32 AM  
Also there are Nature Sanctuaries such as this one in Tampa that care for the Big Cats after their owners abandon/mistreat them.
Sanctuaries like this one is usually where "domesticated" Big Cats go after an owner has tired of them.
Wouldn't it just be better to have them in "Natural" Zoo enviroment instead of with private owners?
To each his own, and each individual has his own opinion on any given subject. This is just mine.
2002-10-20 11:53:26 AM  
Where's my 50 miles of roaming territory and a gazelle to kill and drag into a tree?

Atomicfever, you have the luxury of having a choice; if you want to run wild and free. No one is forcing you to stay in that cubicle. The animals are not given this choice. .
2002-10-20 11:55:47 AM  
10-20-02 07:41:55 AM Drewsy
Right on, Drewsy, you got the picture.
2002-10-20 12:00:17 PM  
"As long as the animal is healthy in a clean, wide cage and is used for exhibition or educational or other commercial purposes, it's fine with the state."
I like the fact that this is okay as long as the tiger is being used in some way other than just being a pet. What difference does it make?
"Ohhhh.. you take it out to show children what a tiger looks like in real life? Well then, by all means, keep your tiger in your backyard."
2002-10-20 12:02:52 PM  
Props to Webgrunt, Slayerswine, FarmerBob, and MikeWeath, for expressing sensible opinions on this subject that matters a great deal to me.
2002-10-20 12:07:17 PM  
--Big Cats were not born to be confined. I agree that once one is, it should not be returned to the wild unless it is properly reintroduced.

Big the the Big Cat. Introductions over.
2002-10-20 12:20:38 PM  
don't ya just want to get in there and cuddle with it?
2002-10-20 12:56:12 PM  
PeterNorth: Actually, yeah.... I'd love to have a domesticated tiger... I just don't think that domesticating tigers is a terribly good idea...
2002-10-20 01:25:01 PM  
Thanks for the laugh.

And I agree with those who thinks it's stupid that it's ok to keep a tiger as long as it's not just a pet. I wonder if he takes it out for walks every day, or just "show it off" once in a while...
2002-10-20 01:48:52 PM  
Years ago I was a Papa John's driver in Augusta, Ga, and upon delivering a pizza to a home in old town one night, was greeted at the door by a 150# mountain lion. The dude kept it as a pet, and it was very tame. I'd hate to clean the litter box, though.
2002-10-20 01:56:10 PM  
You'd think people could come up with more creative names for their pets.... Come on, seriously, a tiger named Rajah? How cliche sounding is that?
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