Police Say the Tiger Cub Was Seized After Someone Tried to Illegally Sell the Animal Online
Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center is giving a heartfelt send off to “Indy” the tiger cub Wednesday at its North Scottsdale sanctuary. This will be Indy’s last day at Southwest Wildlife as she is headed to her new permanent forever home in Sandstone, Minnesota at The Wildcat Sanctuary.
The young cub, who is now 5 months old and weighs 90 pounds, made local and national news earlier this year after police say a Valley man illegally listed the tiger cub for sale on social media and tried to sell her. Police arrested the man and he is currently facing charges for owning it and trying to sell her. Indy was temporarily being cared for at the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center in Scottsdale while the case was being resolved.
Southwest Wildlife says they are proud to have taken care of the animal the last few months and now is excited for Indy’s next chapter.
“This is what we do here at Southwest Wildlife. We take in animals that have been injured or inadequately cared for so we can get them rehabilitated and healthy until we find their new forever home,” said Jamie Haas Oliver, Development Manager at Southwest Wildlife. “It’s always our hope and goal to get the animal re-introduce and released back into the wild but in Indy’s case she will be headed to a Wildlife Sanctuary where they specialize in caring for Big Cats and she can live out many years ahead.”
In 2021, The Wildcat Sanctuary (where Indy is headed) took in 4 big cats seized by the Department of Justice from Tiger King Park, made famous by the Netflix series.
“Our sanctuary provides transport and proper lifetime care, all at our own expense, to ensure tigers like Indy grow up in a proper and safe environment,” said The Wildcat Sanctuary Founder Tammy Thies. “We’re so grateful for the care Southwest Wildlife gave Indy during the court case. She’s a healthy, happy tiger because of them. As an accredited sanctuary, we commonly assist the U.S. Fish and Wildlife and other authorities on cases like these. Tigers and other big cats are still being sold and trafficked illegally in the United States.”
The Wildcat Sanctuary staff will drive 3,400 miles round-trip to pick up Indy. At the new sanctuary, she’ll live out her days with 130 other rescued big cats who call the sanctuary home. She’ll enjoy a large, free-roaming habitat with a heated indoor bedroom, pools, caves and plenty of enrichment to keep her happy and her senses challenged. And the sanctuary hopes to introduce her to other tigers once she is big enough.
Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center is a non-profit and relies on 100-percent donations and grants to rehabilitate and care for animals. To donate visit www.southwestwildlife.org.
Similarly, The Wildcat Sanctuary invites the public to support Indy’s transport and care by donating at WildcatSanctuary.org.
About Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center
Southwest Wildlife, accredited by the American Sanctuary Association (ASA), rescues and rehabilitates wildlife that has been injured, displaced, and orphaned. Once rehabilitated, they are returned to the wild. Sanctuary is provided to animals that cannot be released back to the wild.
Linda Searles officially founded Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center in 1994. Since then, SWCC has rehabilitated thousands of sick, injured, orphaned or displaced wild animals. More than 70 percent have been successfully released back into the wild. Specially trained staff and volunteers are on call to respond to any wild mammal emergency that may arise.
For more information, visit http://www.SouthwestWildlfe.org or call (480) 471-9109.