Last Monday (April 9), less than forty-eight hours since Padang (Sumatran Tiger) passed, it appeared the Keepers were taking down her fence and less than an hour later they had Shastyuh in Padang's yard. To me that was just plain disrespectful. Don't get me wrong, I love Shasty, I just think there could have been a "moment of silence" so to speak. As well, there was a sign up, explaining about the passing of Padang, yet there was a Tiger in the yard. To anyone who doesn't know the difference, it wouldn't make sense.
Since the January passing of Tunya and the merging of the Lions, there has been enough yards for the amount of Cats, none had to be on rotation. That said, with Padang now gone, there is an extra yard. There was no reason for Padang's yard NOT to be left empty out of respect, at least for a few days. It would have been nice if they had put out some flowers also. When we lost Tony (Siberian Tiger) in 2010, the Big Cat Keeper who had been there at the time, let Lee and I bring flowers and she kept them in front of Tony's room inside the Lion House for two weeks. There has been an obvious change in respect for the Cats since that.
Today, one week to the day of Paddy's passing, I also noticed that there has been a change to the entrance to her yard.
Logs now add a buffer to an area that a hazard cone had been covering. There are wood chips on the ground creating a covering as well. I have to wonder if this wasn't the area that was causing the injuries Padang had to her limbs in the two weeks prior to her passing? If so, this makes me upset because I saw her in the yard before these alterations were made. I was shocked to see she had access outside to the yard. Curiously, there was an orange hazard cone covering part of the yard entrance. I thought it odd, as I could only think it was to cover possibly the problem area she had been rubbing against? But, really, if that is why, she should have just been kept inside til it was fixed, I'm pretty sure a Tiger doesn't know the meaning of a hazard cone.
I also saw her in the yard four days before her passing, with no bandages on her limbs, which really upset me.