People ask me all the time if these tigers are drugged. They are not. They are big cats and like domestic housecats, they sleep about 18 hours a day! The older they are, the more they sleep. Also, in the heat of the afternoon they sleep like housecats and when you pet them they close their eyes and they go to sleep, like a housecat.
In the very top picture I laugh at the expression the photographer caught on my face - just really unsure like, "Is this going to be okay Mrs. Tiger?"
Here is the journaling:
I wanted to take my little portable stool in the enclosure with me so I could sit down without getting all the way on the ground. They would not let me take it Ė we could only take our cameras. If we took anything else the tigers would think it was toy and attack it and try to play with it and it was not safe for the tigerís to try to play with visitors. After all these were just big cats and they are very playful. Itís not advisable to give them the idea that you are there to play with them!
As soon as we walked into the enclosure we saw a female tiger on our right. You cannot touch the front paws or face or head of the tigers, just from the neck back and they love to have their tummies rubbed. You have to rub firmly. If you rub lightly they think you are tickling and playing with them and that is where it can get dangerous because they love to play. They trainer constantly repeated, "Stoke them deliberately and firmly."
After the trainer got the female tiger to lay down I was instructed to walk around behind her and start petting her so they could take pictures. Then Bill joined me on the ground next to the tiger and the photographer took several dozen pictures of us together with her. After a 10 minute photo session with this tiger we went to meet the next tiger.