Outrage as a fully grown TIGER is wheeled out in a cage as ‘guest of honor’ during senior prom in Miami for all-boys private school
- All-boys private Catholic high school in Miami held senior prom on Friday
- Christopher Columbus High School staged prom at Double Tree Hilton
- Theme of this year’s event was ‘Welcome to the jungle’
- Star attraction was a caged tiger that was rolled out on to the dance floor
- Animal behavior expert says tiger appeared stressed
- School defended decision, saying that the animal was watched by professionals
A private school in Miami brought a caged wild tiger to a senior prom – sparking outrage on social media from people who say it was animal abuse.
Christopher Columbus High School, an all-boys Roman Catholc institution costing $10,700-a-year, held the annual senior dance at the Double Tree Hilton Miami Airport Convention Center on Friday.
The prom was held this year under the theme ‘Welcome to the jungle.’
Organizers apparently decided to take up the theme literally by arranging for a fully grown tiger to be trotted out onto the dance floor.
A Miami high school brought a caged wild tiger to a senior prom – sparking outrage on social media from people who say it was animal abuse
Christopher Columbus High School, an all-boys Roman Catholc institution, held the annual senior dance at the Double Tree Hilton Miami Airport Convention Center on Friday
The prom was held this year under the theme ‘Welcome to the jungle’
Organizers apparently decided to take up the theme literally by arranging for a fully grown tiger to be trotted out onto the dance floor
The spectacle outraged the sister of one of the students, who took to Facebook to express anger.
‘My mom doesn’t appreciate that she spent $200 for prom and got this type of attraction,’ the student’s sister, Marie-Christine Castellanos, said.
‘Who got down on one knee and proposed to the tiger to go to the prom?
‘He’s nothing more than an object that people used to amuse themselves in exchange for money,’ said Castellanos, a 19-year-old college student.
Castellanos said her brother is unwilling to publicly come forward because of fears of reprisals from the school, ABC News reported.
She said that video of the tiger shows that the animal is being abused.
‘The body language of the tiger showed he is not happy with the situation,’ she said.
‘He is stressed. The tiger is pacing up and down.’
The tiger wasn’t the only exotic animal brought to the prom.
Organizers of the event also arranged for birds, a lemur, two macaws, and an African fennec fox.
The school defended itself against criticism, saying that the animals were minded by state-licensed handlers.
An animal behavior expert appears to agree with Castellanos.
‘The tiger is clearly looking for a way to get out of that situation, it’s not difficult to interpret that behavior,’ said Ron Magill, a spokesperson for ZooMiami.
‘He was surrounded by people, cell phones, lights, jugglers juggling fire.
‘I really don’t know what they were thinking.
The school defended itself against criticism, saying that the animals were minded by state-licensed handlers
An animal behavior expert said that the tiger appeared stressed as it was pacing back and forth
‘Exploiting animals for entertainment at parties — that time has passed. We know better; we’ve been educated.’
‘When you see a tiger’s ears go to the side, or go flat back, that is not a good thing,’ Magill told the Miami Herald.
‘That’s what we call helicopter mode; it’s how we read cats.’
The school released a statement saying: ‘Two Miami-Dade Police officers were present the entire time.
‘The animals were provided by facilities that are licensed by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
‘The tiger, which was displayed for a few minutes in a cage was never harmed or in danger, was not forced to perform, was always accompanied by his handlers, and for the great majority of the time was lying down in a relaxed state facing away from the audience.’
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