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The animals at T.I.G.E.R.S. are hand raised from the time they are very young. They are given thousands of hours of training and constant care by their individual trainers. We have such a strong relationship with the animals that recently we were able to go in the den box with one of the female tigers and assist while she gave birth to her cubs. One of the first things the baby cubs saw when they opened their eyes were their human friends.

People often think it is dangerous to get so close to wild animals like these, but the handlers here at T.I.G.E.R.S. have been with these animals since they were cubs and have developed a special friendship based on love and respect. All of the trainers live with the animals 24 hours a day.

T.I.G.E.R.S. has a proven method of dealing with these animals:  Never treat them as pets; lots of tender loving care; and thousands of hours of one-on-onehandling.  This training is beneficial to the animals in many ways.

First and foremost, their lifestyle offers them physical and mental stimulation that, unfortunately, is not available in a "traditional" zoo. This includes traveling around the world as ambassadors for their kind, meeting new people, and experiencing new situations. Many of the trainers actually sleep with the animals in specially designed apartments. The handlers never use whips or chairs to train the animals. All training is done with reward and affection.

The relief from the monotony of a cage and regular contact with other species,including humans, allows the animals at T.I.G.E.R.S. to lead happy and healthier lives. They have large areas to live in and have all run free in the forest. Unlike any other animals in a traditional zoo or circus environment.  Some have even been back to their homelands. By learning to walk on a leash the animals of T.I.G.E.R.S. get a changing environment. They are always experiencing new sites, smells and textures.  For wild animals change is freedom. Change and learning relive boredom and make for happier healthy animals. They all work less than 16 weeks a year and are given the very best in diet and health care. This interaction helps the trainers and the visitors to our shows get a better understanding of what these exotic animals are really like.