Thursday, February 11, 2010


I'm not entirely insensitive to the fundamental tragedy of Norman Buwalda's death. The 66 year old London, Ontario-area man, who was fatally mauled by his pet tiger last weekend, was by all accounts a successful, big-hearted, well-liked local businessman with friends and family members who deeply mourn his passing.
But dude, it's a tiger.
I have a pair of housecats who occasionally bare their claws if the dog isn't giving them their space or if one of the kids becomes overly affectionate. They've even been known to sit in ambush on countertops and give me a surprise smack if they feel I've been negligent in keeping their accessible food supply sufficiently topped up. However, a glancing blow from an otherwise benign furball is one thing. Incurring the wrath of a 500 pound carnivore whose predictability and potential for domestication are both spotty at best is something else entirely.
I love the beauty and majesty of the genus Panthera, and if I had more money than brains and lived on a big property, I could see the attraction in keeping a tiger. But my respect for their place in the nature of things and a healthy fear of the dangers posed by species with a documented history of killing and eating people outweighs any appeal that exotic pet ownership might hold for my ego.
To summarize, I don't jump out of a plane without a parachute, I don't use a blow torch to loosen the screw top on my propane tank, I don't eat uncooked pork and I don't have a pet tiger. None of that qualifies me for Mensa membership. It's just common sense. And if...OW!
Time to feed the cats.

P.S. There are exceptions to the general rule that domesticated animals are harmless. Click here for Pinky the psychotic cat.


  1. Ted..
    I need to talk to you.. e-me @
    I'll send you my phone number.. or.. e-me yours.


  2. I wasn't aware that Ontario still allow these kind of pets. I know that in Québec we have a law against keeping these kind of animal (it's covers also cover skunks, racoons, and any other wild life). They should be in a zoo on a reserve or where the belong in the wild.

    A wild animal of this size is not Garfield or the jungle book.

    I sure hope the tiger is now on a reserve or a zoo...It would bad if they put him to sleep, because of some rich man.

  3. After seeing what happened to Roy in Vegas, the man must've thought..'that'll never happen to me...' Never say never.

  4. animals are meant to be in thier
    naturall habitat..

    even the small ones like skunks and
    racoons..its thier naturall habitat..

    like humans..we stay indoors..


  5. Just the thought of having to clean out the huge friggin litter box would be enough of a deterrent for me.

  6. Hey Ted, ever thought about writing a book?

    You are a great writer and story teller, so why not actually write a book about all the experiences you've had in radio. I can still hear your voice whenever I read your blog.

    You'd probably make a mint, writing that book.

    Okay back on topic, I do feel awful for the poor man but very stupid of him.