On the first day of classes at LSU, students aren’t the only ones getting a start at the university. This morning, Dr. David Baker, LSU’s attending veterinarian, along with student caretakers, opened the door of the tiger habitat and officially welcomed Mike VII to campus.

LSU had previously announced that the rescue tiger, “Harvey,” arrived on campus on Aug. 15 and was being housed in the night house of the tiger habitat. The 11-month-old, male tiger was being quarantined in the night house so that he could be observed by LSU veterinarians to ensure that he is healthy and a good fit for LSU.

The tiger acclimated well to his new surroundings and was deemed ready to become Mike VII. As Mike VII, his daily schedule is that he will be let out into his yard by 8 a.m. each day and brought back in his night house by 8 p.m. each day.

LSU plans to hold a welcome event for Mike VII and more details on the time and activities associated with the welcome will be available soon.

Mike VII, who has both Siberian and Bengal characteristics, was donated to LSU from a sanctuary in Okeechobee, Fla., called “Wild at Heart Wildlife Center.” Mikes IV, V and VI were also donated to LSU from rescue facilities. LSU has not purchased a tiger since Mike III in 1958, and LSU does not support the for-profit breeding of tigers. By providing a home for a tiger that needs one, LSU hopes to raise awareness about the problem of irresponsible breeding and the plight of tigers kept illegally and/or inappropriately in captivity in the U.S.

The tiger habitat and LSU’s animal care plan are licensed by the USDA. The facility, tiger and animal care programs are inspected annually to ensure that they comply with the Federal Animal Welfare Act and other USDA policies and guidelines.

This and other information on LSU’s tigers can be found online at www.lsu.edu/mikethetiger. You can follow Mike on Facebook (www.facebook.com/mikethetiger), Twitter (@mikethetiger) and Instagram (@mikethetiger_lsu).

The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine is one of only 30 veterinary schools in the U.S. and the only one in Louisiana. The LSU SVM is dedicated to improving the lives of people and animals through education, research and service. We teach. We heal. We discover. We protect.

Contributed Report