Arusha, Akbar, & Kumar came to IEAS in order to help another sanctuary avoid licensing problems. They were raised by our Behaviorist, Louis, and the IEAS staff from 5 weeks old. We raised these cubs using our unique Emotional Enrichment Program. It was because of this, that these three tigers are some of the most affectionate, confident and secure tigers at IEAS and perhaps anywhere else. In nine years, they have not shown any aggressive action whatsoever towards any human. They frequently shower Louis with chuffs, rubs and licks. He spends three days a week sitting and visiting with them and occasionally lying with them under their cedar tree shade area. You won't see a tiger like them anywhere else. They had a care-free childhood and were, and still are, able to act like tigers. In addition, they show great affection towards each other and lay together daily grooming each other and going to sleep with their paws around each other, even though tigers are solitary animals in the wild. They enjoy a spacious habitat with a big pool, trees, perches and many enrichment items to play with. We just wish all our animals had this kind of beginning--physically and emotionally. Akbar was named by the TXI Corporation who generously donated materials to build his habitat.
Akbar's name means "Great" which fits his personality. He is the biggest of his siblings and the tallest. Akbar is very affectionate as well as very playful during cooler days. He enjoys visits from Louis and is usually the first to greet him by affectionately rubbing against Louis while eliciting loving cuffs. This act shows you just how tall Akbar is; his head is almost level with Louis' chin. Though you can tell by looking at him that Akbar is full of power, he is a very soft hearted being who enjoys attention and affection and he is a great example of the gentle and affectionate nature that is one element of a tiger's personality.