Well it seems there are those in the world that STILL haven’t learned that petting big cats is NOT wise. With the recent debauchery with the Netflix documentary “Tiger King” and the subsequent arrests and charges filed against the owners, I’m baffled. I’m baffled that people still think it’s okay to participate in pay-to-play encounters. That there are millionaires out there just ripping people off by exploiting their animal abuses. And worse yet, that there are idiots out there willing to pay them for it.
Because for one man in South Florida, his pay-to-play encounter with a black leopard almost cost him his life.
And the only one I’d be sad for was the big cat who would likely be euthanized after such an attack.
But how does this happen? Why are we reading ANOTHER big cat headline with someone…who entered the animals enclosure…being “attacked”? In reality, it’s wasn’t an attack. It was self-defense and the true nature of wild animals.
Something that millionaire Michael Poggi of Davie, Florida is more than happy to brag about “controlling”, exploit and continuously breed for his own selfish purposes. Poggi owns what he incorrectly labels a “sanctuary”. And even sadder for humanity, is the fact that he charges hundreds of dollars for a hands on experience.
Dwight Turner, 50, paid the $150 charge for what Poggi calls a “a full-contact experience” with his black leopard. This was going to get him a few minutes getting to pet the animals belly, take photos and be within the cage with the “tame” beast.
And within the first seconds of the pay-to-play, Turner’s scalp was “hanging from his head and his right ear was torn in half,” reports said.
Because what the fluff do you expect to happen?! Poggi admitted his wrong doing but the limited info is seeming to indicate he is playing the victim after just trying to “help”.
Authorities charged the owner with allowing full contact with an extremely dangerous animal and was cited for maintaining captive wildlife in an unsafe condition.
Since the August 31st incident, Turner has had to undergo numerous surgeries. He should be counting his lucky stars he’s even alive.
But what about Poggi? He does HAVE a FL license to have the animals. And that is because the laws are outdated. Because uneducated masses think that getting to “pet” a wild animal makes them a better person? NO, it doesn’t.
Helping the literal millions of house pets….primarily cats and dogs…that are killed each year after being left in shelters makes you better. Allowing wild animals to live in the wild and helping them thrive THERE should be the goal. Breeders of ANY animals that are doing it for money and not to save a species are a plight on the world.
Poggi doesn’t only exploit the big cats either.
He breeds and sells monkeys as well. You know, the cute ones people think are like stuffed animals? But then when they’re a bit older they turn on you and try to rip your nose off? Yeah, those.
People like him that have money seem to think they are above the law. Which leads them to believe their lives are more important than any others. We saw that in “Tiger King” and we see the beginning of that here. Just because Poggi wears a suit and tie, doesn’t mean he isn’t just as much a criminal the other animal abusers.
I truly hope Mr. Turner’s second chance at life is used more wisely. And let’s not forget the most IMPORTANT victims in this story! Poggi’s black panther and the other animals in his “care”.
REMEMBER: EXOTIC ANIMALS & BIG CATS DON’T MAKE GOOD PETS; THEY BELONG IN THE WILD!
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