‘Tiger King’ Star Joe Exotic Is Terrified Of Tigers & Lions, Allegedly Killed A Horse For No Reason
In the new reunion episode of Netflix’s new documentary series Tiger King, Rick Kirkham, the producer of Joe Exotic T.V revealed that Joe Exotic was actually very scared of his own tigers.
“Joe was terrified of big cats,” Kirkham said. “He was scared to death of lions and tigers. And in the shots that you see in there, where he’s in with the two tigers, the white one and the other one—the white one is blind and the other one is on tranquilizers. It’s idiotic to think how he’s become famous as The Tiger King when he’s so terrified of big cats.”
As Kirkham mentions, Exotic’s fear of tigers is surprisingly considering he was the owner and operator of a zoo filled with big cats. In the show, Exotic is pictured touching or very close to the cats several times.
Kirkham also shared a story about a lady who had brought her old horse to Exotic so he could give her a good home in her advanced years. Instead, Exotic instantly killed the horse. “No sooner did that lady get off the park than Joe said, ‘Rick, follow me,’” Kirkham recalled. “Walked right up to the trailer, pulled the Western revolver out of his holster, shot the horse dead, and said, ‘I don’t take care of nobody’s animals. Now they’re tiger meat.’ And he had the horse cut up and fed to the tigers. It was unbelievably cruel.”
Animal activists and critics have pointed out that throughout the documentary series Exotic abuses the animals in his care, charges that Exotic was ultimately convicted on, along with his attempt at hiring someone to murder Big Cat Rescue CEO Carole Baskin. On January 2 2020 Exotic was sentenced to 22 years in federal prison and is now incarcerated at FMC Fort Worth. President Donald Trump said he would “take a look” at pardoning Exotic when a reporter asked him during a press briefing.
It seems Exotic didn’t treat people very well either, as John Reinke, a former manager at Exotic’s zoo accused Exotic of blowing up his cabin. “The man’s done a lot of stupid shit,” Reinke said. “I mean, toward the end he got to where he’s blowing everything up. I mean, hell, he blew up my golf cart and my damn cabin… Knocked the windshield out of my golf cart, blew a hole in my cabin… Blew a window out.”