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Thursday, March 20, 1997
Tiger takes morning stroll after escaping from
Wild Animal Orphanage
SAN ANTONIO (AP) - A 300-pound Bengal tiger took a leisurely
morning stroll after escaping from the Wild Animal Orphanage,
The adolescent tiger named Sheryl jumped a 10-foot fence to
get away from the animal orphanage northwest of San Antonio early
No one was attacked or threatened, but she attacked and killed
a North American duck and an African ostrich before wounding a
South American llama, officials said.
Orphanage officials said they believe the tiger got out after
being provoked by an intruder who broke into the property by scaling
a perimeter fence.
Several petting animals also were released from their pens,
orphanage director Carol Asvestas said.
"We've gone over the property with a fine-tooth comb.
Somebody came in, in the middle of the night, jumped the front
fence, turned out the petting animals and somehow provoked (the
tiger) to leave that area," Asvestas said.
The orphanage is a non-profit organization which provides care
and homes to unwanted exotic animals, many of them bought as pets
but later discarded by their owners when they became unmanageable.
Sheryl was the first tiger to escape from the orphanage in
13 years, officials said, but she didn't roam very far in the
sparsely populated area where there are about a dozen homes.
During her morning stroll, the tiger also took a bath in a
gully filled with water.
The stroll ended when the tiger recognized one of the orphanage's
volunteer handlers and followed a woman back inside the compound.
Steve Dobbins, the orphanage's assistant manager, shot a tranquilizer
dart to put her to sleep so handlers and two veterinarians from
the San Antonio Zoo could move her to a pen.
Some Bexar County deputies were alerted about the loose tiger
didn't have to get involved, but the incident "spooked"
"I think I'll transfer back to the South Side, where they
have loose cows and that's it," said one, who didn't want
his name to be used. Send
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