Florida Woman keeps Two Tigers in her Garden and Treats Them as Ordinary Pets

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MAIN-Janice-Haley

With six-inch fangs and weighing in at 600lb, Saber and Janda are no ­ordinary house cats.

Yet these huge Bengal tigers live in Janice Haley’s suburban garden and are treated like ordinary pets.

They are fed by hand, get strokes and cuddles, and white male Saber goes to sleep sucking on her finger.

Janice’s life changed 20 years ago when she spotted an advert for a tiger training course in her local paper – and two years later arrived home with her first cub. Then in 2002 she bought Janda, who is now 12.

After her first tiger died in 2007 little Saber – who was only two weeks old at the time – was introduced to the family.

Janice, who lives in ­Davenport, Florida, says: “They pretty much look at me as being their mother. As far as I’m concerned they are my big four-legged furry kids.

“We have a very special bond – they rub my face and let me kiss them on the nose, we can cuddle with them and hug them.”

After a full day of play and feeding, Janice lies down with the tigers to help them go to sleep. She says: “I don’t know of too many places where you can cuddle with a full grown tiger and we’ve been doing this with them for years.” Janice and husband David work around the clock to care for the tigers and spend all of their income on food and care.

They are fed three times from 1pm to 11pm and the 60ft by 40ft enclosure needs to be cleaned several times a day. Janice says: “We have to travel an hour north for Janda’s horse meat once a week and an hour south for Saber’s beef.”

Not everyone agrees with people having two man-eating tigers in their back garden.

But Janice says: “It is not the ideal place for a tiger to be in a cage but at this point in the wild there isn’t a lot of hope for them any more. If there aren’t some left in cages there aren’t going to be any left at all in a couple of years. Our mission here has always been to try to bring people closer together with these tigers – to build a connection and help save the wild tigers before it’s too late.”

 

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