ZOO WARS ~ UPDATE-Tiger Ridge -State KILLS Leo the Lion
If the state had nothing to hide in making this decision, then why didn’t they consult with his RIGHTFUL OWNER before KILLING Leo the lion and give Leo’s RIGHTFUL OWNER the opportunity to say goodbye to an old friend ??? Mr. Hetrick didn’t have a say in this matter and I truly doubt they will even return Leo’s dead, lifeless body back to him. The comments on FB are rather expletive with how the state of Ohio has handled this matter from the start…People who weren’t supporters before are being driven by the news of how badly the ODA has provided for the animals that began with a raid on Mr. Hetrick’s property; removing his animals.
RIP Leo the Lion
Lion Seized From Animal Sanctuary Euthanized By State
COLUMBUS, Ohio – “Leo” the lion was euthanized this afternoon by the Department of Agriculture.
The state was holding the Lion and other animals after they were seized from Tiger Ridge sanctuary near Toledo.
In a statement to 10TV, the Department Of Agriculture said: the lion was humanely euthanized this afternoon after experiencing complications from his chronic arthritis. Last week, department animal health staff began to observe signs of prolonged lateral recumbency, loss of appetite, increased rate of breathing, and decreased ability to move. The State Veterinarian (Dr. Tony Forshey) and Assistant State Veterinarian (Dr. Melissa Simmerman) consulted with Dr. Richard Carstensen, Leo’s long-time veterinarian, and Dr. Randall Junge, Vice President of Animal Health for the Columbus Zoo and The Wilds. All four veterinarians recommended to humanely euthanize the lion given his condition and how long the ailments have been present.
The lion, Leo, was documented to be weak in the rear end and not walking correctly on August 28, 2014 by an inspector from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. When the animal was transported in January, the lion had open lesions on his rear limbs due to his reduced mobility. For these reasons, Leo’s veterinarian actually had scheduled him to be euthanized on January 26, though weather prevented procedure from occurring.
The animals were taken after the state claimed the owner, Kenny Hetrick, failed to apply for the proper permits. Hetrick is fighting the order.
The state said the Lion had to be put down because it was not walking correctly and had lesions on his rear limbs which reduced his mobility.Previous Report: Exotic Animal Owner Battles State To Get Bears, Tigers Back At Animal Sanctuary
For more than 40 years, Kenny Hetrick has devoted his life to the care of wild animals – providing a sanctuary for bears, tigers, and leopards. He says the fight over his for-profit Tiger Ridge compound has cost him around $40,000 to $50,000 in legal fees.
Now, the Toledo man is fighting to get his animals back.
Tiger Ridge sanctuary was raided in January after the state says he failed to apply for an exotic animal permit. The state says his application “was 289 days late.”
Under Oath during an administrative hearing at the Ohio Department of Agriculture, he said complying with the exotic animal law was confusing. His attorney told the judge when he tried to ask for guidance from enforcement officials he got nowhere.
“She wouldn’t answer the phone,” Hetrick explains.
When asked by his attorney Tim Waleruis if he tried leaving a message, Hetrick replied “about 10 times.” Hetrick goes on to explain that none of his calls were ever returned, either.
Hetrick says before Department of Agriculture agents removed his animals, they had never requested to visit his property. The state says when seized the animals, they found less than ideal conditions including pools of water with algae.
“It was your testimony that you felt this water was clean enough, because you can scoop it up in your hand and look at it and it looked clean to you. That was your testimony,” said Attorney Jim Patterson representing the state.
“That’s what I said”, Hetrick replied.
Hetrick argues the USDA has been inspecting his property since 1989.
“USDA doesn’t enforce Ohio’s dangerous and wild animal law do they?” asked Paterson.
Hetrick replied “no.”
The state argues Hetrick was sent repeated letters warning him he was in violation and that he wouldn’t get a permit unless he complied. But Hetrick argued he was never given an ultimatum and felt that gave him time to get his property in compliance.
Hetrick denied receiving a letter that provided a final cut-off date to apply for a permit with ODA.
The state says it sent Hetrick a letter last year, saying he had to respond within 10 days.
Meantime, during the removal of a female cougar from the property, a former ODA employee testified earlier this month that it wasn’t fully tranquilized and was injured. He claimed there was blood everywhere in the cage.
However, a vet from the Columbus zoo who was there said it didn’t happen. The employee was fired for performance issues.
One less old lion to place-Will they kill more before this is over?!? One less mouth to fed-PETA WANNABEES!!!
“My name is leo, I was 19 years old and I was killed today by the Ohio dept of agriculture for no other reason than my owner was late applying for a permit. he has spent $60,000 on upgrades to ensure my safe return to tigerridge.. I was killed today because I was homesick and didn’t want to eat their food and thrown in a vat of acid. They took me away from the only home I have ever known from the only owner i have ever known..and litter mate I have ever known and threw me in concrete cell with no sunshine, fresh air or my medications I have taken for 2 years..now I cannot even be buried with all my family..I will be some trophy on some vets desk. I will not be forgotten nor will my death be in vain..trust me on this….”
Every raid victim has experienced their animals being abused-When they KILL and MURDER the animals without medical testing/proof that it was necessary-after all, everyone has an opinion-everyone has an asshole, without permission from a judge for animals taken as evidence to be destroyed and without OWNER consent. The ODA demonstrates everything this country is against-GOVERNMENT INTRUSTION and they very reason for the creation of our constitution and PROTECTED civil liberties.When will this stop ??? -Maybe when you decide that you can no longer stay quiet and jump in to help those experiencing the loss of their animals.
Mr. Hetrick and his exotic animals are rather high profile and this occurs in every animal rescue-HOWEVER, Mr. Hetrick’s animals weren’t taken as a rescue-obviously, they had lived well and long lives-These animals were taken as a ‘permit violation’-a permit that is required but, this is not a reason for the government to STEAL property and try to make them something they are not-These animals were NOT abused and these animals do not deserve to be KILLED by the government-Fire the vet!!!
This is what happened with our animals although we were registered with the state of Texas and proves it can happen to anyone…anywhere for animals with illegally stolen by the government.
As long as laws are created with the express purpose to abuse citizens with the intent purpose to take property then anyone stands to be abused by those laws. Make sure your senators and representatives know that you are against the taking of property. BAN civil forfeiture not the property.
Disclaimer connected to this blog…Things said are of my opinion and the opinions of others …Stay tuned -B