The story behind the G.W. Exotic Animal Park is a touching one. After their son was hit and killed by a drunk driver, Francis and Shirley Schreibvogel of Springer, Oklahoma, along with their other son, Joe, vowed that they would dedicate their life to saving the exotic animals that their son had always wanted to see run wild in the jungles of the world. You can read more about their story here.
My daughter and I had to drive more than 80 miles to see their show - and it was worth it!
We actually got to pet two baby tigers! And I'm not talking through a cage, but they were actually sitting in our laps. How much closer can you get? Isn't this little guy adorable? And of course, it was very safe - we had two trainers in the cage with us.It was absolutely amazing to pet these wild creatures and know that we were helping to save them by merely paying for the priviledge to be in the cage with them.
They also had white lion cubs, ligers, and a white tiger, plus older tiger cubs.
And just like our cats here at home, these exotic creatures would play for awhile, wrestling on the floor with each other, chasing after their toys, and then they would nap. And they would do so curled up in each other's arms. It was very precious. All of them were very well-cared for, and you could just see how dearly the trainers loved them.
To cap off the day, one of the founders, Joe "Exotic", performed a wonderful FREE magic show for everyone and delivered a message to the kids about taking care of animals, saying no to drugs, and making them aware of the dangers of drinking and driving. It was a bit of a tearjerker to listen to him talk about his brother, but I am in awe that he dedicated his life to saving these animals and educating children.
Needless to say, my daughter wanted to run away and become a tiger trainer herself! She enjoyed every minute of it and now has asked me again how we can help save the tigers. We've got a few ideas up our sleeves!