Runty and her sisters Star and Sprout arrived at Catty Shack Ranch when they were about 17 months old. They had lived in a private zoo in Wisconsin that closed. We were asked by a national big cat rescue group as well as by the facility’s owner to provide a forever home to some of the tigers. Curt and John (a longtime volunteer) drove to the frozen north to bring 6 tigers to their new home in sunny Florida in January 2013.
When the Ranch volunteers saw the sisters’ thick luxurious coats (needed to survive in snowy, cold 5 degree winters!) and noticed that the 3 tigers were all very chubby, we nicknamed the trio “The Fluffies.” That moniker stuck. We followed our traditional practice of keeping their original names also. Runty and her sisters quickly shed their extra coats and pounds and grew sleek and fit as they aged.
Runty is the white tiger sister with pale ice blue eyes. When she first arrived at the Ranch, her coat was tinged with green. No, she wasn’t a new exotic species of tiger; some of the green paint used to prep her travel enclosure had harmlessly rubbed off as she journeyed south and remained in quarantine for a short while. Sunshine and swimming in her pool quickly corrected her temporary unique coloration. She continues to love playing in her pool and would be happy to splash and bat at her boomer ball for hours at a time.
Visitors often remark about Runty’s white coat and her sisters’ orange coats. Depending on the genetics of the parents, white and orange tigers cubs can be present in the same litter. Although white tigers originated in the Bengal subspecies, with captive crossbreeding, the coloration exists among tigers classified as Siberian also.
At Catty Shack Ranch, Runty enjoys a healthy diet of raw meat with vitamins and supplements appropriate to her species, age and current health conditions. All our animals receive regular veterinary care and are very much loved.
Born: August 14, 2011
Rescued: January 16, 2013
Classification: Panthera tigris tigris (Bengal tiger)