Not wild about tiger centre
I wanted to write to you about the Animal Kingdom in Mae Rim even before the
sad event of someone being mauled. My feeling is that not only is the place
a rip-off (500 baht for 15 minutes with the tiger and 200 baht for the worst
buffet I have ever had), but the treatment of the tigers is cruel and
inhumane. They are kept in cages and then let out for people to pet them.
Most of the time they are sleeping, because that is what tigers do during
the day, and awaking by being hit on the nose with a stick. Also with all
different people come all sorts of different smells. For example, someone
could have dogs or cats at home and the tiger will smell this and may react
to it. There is potential danger lurking in this. Also, if there are
children crying, this can produce a reaction in the tiger, which may include
leaping to get at the child.
A lot of money went into this place and thought it is very well kept, it is
not the place to keep wild animals. I have spoken to some concerned people,
who are in touch with the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
International. Hopefully this organization will inspect Tiger Kingdom and
offer some helpful suggestions to improve the caring for the tigers and
giving them a better place with more room to run. Of course, they really
should be in large sanctuaries and not holed up in Mae Rim!