Tony the Truck Stop Tiger campaign, a tiger confined his entire life in an exhibit outside of a truck stop in Grosse Tete, Louisiana. For more information on the campaign and how to help, visit the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

Major Issues

Improper Veterinary Care

Multiple USDA Citations


Psychological Issues

Exposure to Extreme Conditions

Lack of Space

Inadequate Enrichment

Improper Nutrition


Tony was born at the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete, Louisiana, in 2000, residing with three other tigers who were confiscated from the facility in 2003, leaving Tony as the lone remaining tiger. He is subjected to extreme temperatures and is surrounded 24/7 by gasoline fumes, roaring truck engines, and noise from the nearby freeway.

  • On November 2, 2011, a Louisiana judge ruled that the permit for Tony was illegal, so his owner, Michael Sandlin, could no longer keep him. His owner filed for an appeal but lost the appeal process in the Louisiana Court of Appeals in April 2013. Sandlin intended to file an appeal with the Supreme Court of Louisiana, but the higher court’s ruling was a major step towards gaining Tony’s freedom.
  • On April 25, 2013 the Louisiana Court of Appeal upheld a lower court ruling in ALDF’s case against the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries for unlawfully issuing Michael Sandlin a permit to keep and exhibit Tony. The Court of Appeals agreed with Judge Caldwell, holding that Sandlin is ineligible for a permit to keep Tony.
  • On October 4, 2013 the Louisiana Supreme Court denied a petition to review the decision of the Court of Appeal. Although Sandlin could appeal further to the U.S. Supreme Court, the lawsuit raises no issues of federal law, so the Court could not grant review.
  • On June 20, 2014, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal signed “SB 250”—a bill exempting the owner of Tony the Tiger from existing Louisiana law that prohibits private possession of dangerous and exotic large cats. This bill grants preferential treatment to one individual and has outraged Louisiana residents concerned with public safety and drawn criticism from animal welfare advocates across the nation.
  • On June 24, 2014, Animal Legal Defense Fund filed a lawsuit on behalf of former Representative Warren Triche, Jr., the Louisiana legislator who sponsored the 2006 ban on large exotic cats, and other Louisiana residents and taxpayers.

Our Involvement

One World Conservation continues to support the campaign to revoke the exhibitors permit of Michael Sandlin, Tony’s owner, and proper relocation of Tony.