Jeff & Lauren Lowe turn over remainder of animals at Tiger King Zoo
Jeff and Lauren Lowe have agreed to turn over the remaining animals to the Department of Justice
THACKERVILLE, Oklahoma (KXII) - Netflix docu-series Tiger King stars Jeff and Lauren Lowe agreed to give up the remaining 61 animals left behind at the Tiger King Zoo to the United States Department of Justice.
“There had already been an order to remove all of the animals who were on the endangered species list,” said CEO and founder of Big Cat Rescue Carole Baskin. “All the cubs had been removed, but we were concerned about all these other animals that had been left behind- including some small cats like bob cats, links and caracals.”
The DOJ filed the notice Friday, stating that Jeff and Lauren “abandoned their right, title, and interest in the animals remaining at the Tiger King park.” Monday the couple agreed to sign them off.
“I was relieved to see that many of them were still there and still alive,” said Howard Baskin of Big Cat Rescue.
The DOJ has until Friday, August 20 to pick all the animals up.
“When Joe Exotic ran the G.W. Zoo he claimed to have 1,400 animals there. Then when Jeff Lowe took over in 2018, when Joe was arrested and in jail- we were seeing all sorts of different kinds of numbers as far as how many animals were actually there,” Baskin said.
In May, 68 big cats were seized from the park after an inspection by the USDA exposed poor living conditions and mistreatment of the animals.
“This is really big. There have been a number of huge rescues and seizures in the last few years, with anywhere between 50 to over 100 big cats at these tiger mills where people are breeding these big cats. One by one we’re seeing more of these places go under, or have the animals seized and more of these animals are going to live at sanctuaries, so it’s all a step in the right direction,” said Baskin.
In May, Lowe told News 12 that he and Lauren are leaving the park in Thackerville with plans to take over another park somewhere in the states, with over 400 cats.
Monday, the property seemed to be vacant and the park did not appear to be in operation.
Porcupine, lemurs, bobcats, ferrets, raccoons, foxes, and a camel are just some of the several species that will go into United States custody.
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