Tiger Escape at G.W. Zoo Prompts Call for Employee Safety Inspection

PETA Urges Federal Authorities to Hold Roadside Zoo Accountable After Tiger Shot and Killed While Loose on the Premises

For Immediate Release:
August 23, 2017

Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382

Wynnewood, Okla. – This morning, PETA sent an urgent letter calling on the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to investigate a recent tiger escape at the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park, or “G.W. Zoo,” and hold the facility accountable for apparently failing to provide employees with a workplace free from “recognized hazards,” as OSHA requires.

According to an inspection report that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently released, the tiger escaped from an enclosure on May 15. She was discovered loose on the premises by an employee and was shot to death near the roadside zoo’s perimeter fence. The incident occurred less than a year after OSHA issued G.W. Zoo a repeat citation and a “proposed penalty” of $10,974 for failing to protect employees from the hazards associated with physical contact with big cats.

“Ramshackle enclosures and dangerous wild animals could easily be a deadly combination,” says PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet. “G.W. Zoo’s history of showing a flagrant disregard for the safety of both big cats and employees is exactly why PETA urges everyone to stay away from roadside zoos like this one.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—notes that G.W. Zoo’s history of violating the federal Animal Welfare Act includes many violations for filthy, wet, unsafe, and dilapidated animal enclosures. In 2016, three tiger cubs were discovered roaming unsupervised in a house at the facility. The USDA also has two ongoing investigations into the deaths of dozens of tiger cubs there.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind