Police called to catch tigers at Dutch big cat sanctuary

FourPawsBigCatCentre On Saturday, May 14th, Dutch police reported two tigers escaped from their enclosure at a big cat sanctuary and were prowling around the terrain of the park in the northern province of Friesland.

Police spokeswoman Nathalie Schubart said police officers and a vet had the animals in sight and were trying to tranquilize them as the sanctuary’s outer fence is not fully secure. The animals have to be caught because of fears they could still escape through the outer fence, “which would be dangerous for the people nearby.”

Police warned local residents in the small village of Olderberkoop, 140 kilometers (87 miles) northeast of Amsterdam, about the tigers. Not long after the warning was issued the tigers were shot with tranquilizers and never got beyond the sanctuary’s outer fence.

Schubart said the animals were cornered by officers and tranquilized by a veterinarian as the sanctuary’s outer fence was not considered tiger-proof. It was not immediately clear how the animals escaped, but a gate to their enclosure could have been left open.

The tigers, reportedly a brother and a sister, did not hurt anyone during their brief foray into the wooded grounds of the sanctuary, which cares for big cats from zoos, circuses and private owners.

Felida is a Four Paws rescue centre for big cats in the Dutch village of Nijeberkoop. The centre was founded approximately 20 years ago as “Stichting Pantera,” but for various reasons the centre lacked maintenance for several years. In October 2013, Four Paws took over the centre and started implementing necessary changes to improve the animal welfare situation.

Calls to the cat sanctuary went unanswered.

WCCLAS News Staff

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