Big Cat Rescue has recently learned about a small, private zoo in the Middle Eastern country of Oman that we believe is improperly caring for over 200 animals, including lions and tigers. Located in the city of Barka, An Noman Park Zoo, the only zoo in the country, is owned and operated by Ahmed Al Balushi, who does not appear to have any training or education for running a zoo. The 9-year-old zoo doesn’t even have an address or a website and we are told purposely tries to keep a low profile; the animals are suffering and nobody is even aware!
Big Cat Rescue was contacted by a caring animal lover in Oman who is desperate to raise awareness around the world of the plight of the animals in this zoo and garner media attention for the animals, even at potential personal risk to herself. She recently visited the zoo and tells us the animals are living in tiny, barren cages without proper food, clean water, exercise or enrichment. The lions and tigers have no opportunity to exercise or experience anything close to their natural environment. One of the tigers had severe diarrhea when she visited. A female tiger has a broken tooth that does not appear to be getting treated.
We are told the owner has ignored complaints from visitors and has used his contacts in the Oman government to continue exploiting these animals for profit. The animal advocate who contacted us says “the zoo owner does not want to be disturbed by people poking around, and definitely would not want to be disturbed by government officials who may come looking because of complaints.” YOUR emails about this decrepit zoo could be the impetus for the government to take action!
The advocate also reports: “The lions and tigers are kept in cages in the corner of the park, right next to a room with a pool and slide that can be rented out for the day. Summer temperatures are very high in the Middle East, so the pool is a big attraction. The lions and tigers have to endure screaming children in addition to the summer heat and the barren cages they live in. The tigers were purchased from a circus in Italy, and the lions brought in the Emirates as young cubs. There can be up to 7000 visitors in summer and the noise and stress for these big cats must be grueling. The lions pace up and down out of boredom. The tigers sleep because there is nothing else to do.”
“In addition, bald eagles are reduced to sitting on a log all day. A striped hyena is alone in its cage, and two spotted hyenas (both with head wounds) laid curled up in a corner of their cage, which is completely empty apart from a bowl of water. There are even domestic dogs in cages at the zoo; the owner sells the puppies. The dogs, including a Golden Retriever and an Altasian, are matted and filthy and looked miserable. There are a lot of other animals in similar situations including racoons, emus, ostriches, crocodiles, porcupines, monkeys, snakes, and birds. The monkeys are in a metal cage above the chickens. The porcupines were all pressed together in a tight group against the metal bars in their metal cage.”
We need your help to educate An Noman Park Zoo in Oman that it is cruel to keep animals in small barren cages with no enrichment or natural environment. Although we are told there was a Royal Decree issued in 2017 which outlines how animals in Oman should be treated, it seems there is no enforcement of these rules and no history or culture of proper animal welfare in the country.
Your emails will demonstrate to the zoo, government officials and Ministry of Tourism (Oman is trying to increase tourism so the more people who speak up about this deplorable zoo the better) that MANY people around the globe do not want to see mistreatment and cruelty towards lions and tigers, or any other animals.
Ask the government and the zoo to enforce the Royal Decree regarding animal welfare and immediately make improvements to the zoo and animal care OR send the animals to sanctuaries. The park could continue as a place for tourists to visit to enjoy the pool; it does not need to continue to exploit and neglect wild animals.
End Neglect at Noman Park Zoo!
Please share this action with anyone else who might be interested in lending their voice. This is the link to share: https://bigcatrescue.salsalabs.org/2019nomanpark