127 animals from ‘Tiger King’ are now in Keenesburg sanctuary

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FILE: A pair of tigers relax at the Wild Animal Sanctuary on April 5, 2020 in Keenesburg, Colorado. (Photo by Marc Piscotty/Getty Images)

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KEENESBURG, Colo. (KDVR) —  The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg has rescued 85 additional animals as the United States Department of Agriculture and Department of Justice pursue legal measures to protect them.

The Wild Animal Sanctuary rescued 39 tigers and three black bears from Joe Exotic’s G.W. Zoo in 2017, but didn’t publicize it because of ongoing litigation. Now, with the wildly popular Netflix documentary “Tiger King,” they are able to show the difference they are making.

The remaining animals were rescued in five separate groups:

  • 11 wolves, three tigers and two bears were brought to the refuge in southern Colorado after Jeff and Lauren Lowes lost their USDA license and left the animals in their zoo
  • 14 tigers were rescued in January from the Lowe’s facility in Thackerville, OK
  • 1 liger was rescued on May 6, five other big cats went to different sanctuaries
  • 17 lions, tigers, ligers, liligers and tiligers, and two bears were rescued from Tim Stark’s facility in Indiana
  • The sanctuary took part in a raid of the Lowe’s Tiger King Park on May 17 and 18, removing all 68 endangered big cats and taking in 35 of the lions, tigers and liligers from the raid

The Wild Animal Sanctuary is nearly 700 acres. It also has more than 10,000 acres in southern Colorado for a Wild Animal Refuge.

The Wild Animal Sanctuary has been around for nearly 40 years. It currently has 550 animals. Its main mission is education and it hopes Joe Exotic and the wild cast of characters from the “Tiger King” documentary will show people a new appreciation for what they are doing. 

The Wild Animal Sanctuary depends on donations to help care for the animals. If you would like to help, visit the sanctuary’s website.

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