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I Hate My Life – White Tigers Are NOT Natural

By Paige
Would you inbreed for a change of color?

Inbred White Tiger

Image from Big Cat Rescue

As we are doing our research for this website, we have come to realize the sad fact that even the kings of the animal world can be subject to animal abuse.

Playing With Mother Nature

These images really need no more words, they speak volumes. However the artist who drew the image below really knows her stuff and goes on to give an in-depth explanation about why white tigers are really sad business.

I Hate My Life

Image from Little Lioness

“The white gene is a double-recessive one caused mostly by inbreeding (in a natural mating, there is only a one in 10,000 chance that a tiger will be white), which is why they say that it exists ‘only in captivity’. Zoos are not willing to wait for this one in 10,000 miracle tiger, and so find that the only other way to produce them is through inbreeding.”

Wrong On So Many Levels

This is just an excerpt from the page, she goes into very specific detail about the problems associated with this type of breeding and it’s effects on conservation efforts for tiger species. (White tigers aren’t protected because their bloodlines are such a mishmash of species and genetics).

In fact, their breeding is discouraged and only done by zoos and circuses looking to attract more visitors.

Do it For The Tigers

We certainly hope that the drawing and image above is reason enough to make you avoid zoos that continue unhealthy breeding practices. Inbred animals live a sad life of confusion and pain.

In short, their whole life is abuse.

Boycott zoos with white tigers. In fact, we are well on the way to telling you to boycott zoos altogether.

*Update – this video is worth a watch

67 Responses to “I Hate My Life – White Tigers Are NOT Natural”

What's Yours?

  1. Nuria says:

    I think zoo’s are a double edged sword. On one hand, I hate to see these animals in captivity. Many of which live in cramped spaces in horrible conditions, because the zoo’s they are kept in don’t have the proper funds to house them correctly.

    On the other side, it is one of the few ways to promote conservation and interest in helping keep these animals alive in the wild. Promoting the fact we need to help them and not kill them, poach them and stop encroaching on their habitat.

    • anti white tiger says:

      white tigers are never released in the wild, there is no conservation going on here

      • Arian says:

        hey i know why. they have been hunted almost to extention. i know this becouse i study them!! so make a reserve and let them roam and mate to repopulate

  2. So the incredibly destructive practices that have ruined the health of so many breeds of dogs happen on the zoo level as well? Ay carumba….

    Thanks for making this known….

  3. roentarre says:

    This writing is so true and your cartoon is so humurous. I aggree that these protected species are not really protected.

    Such much is humanity trying to do good.

  4. Jan S says:

    Do you happen to have a link to show the scientific evidence that the gene that produces the white color is not found often in the wild? Although it is rare it does occur in wild populations. It is only carried in certain bloodlines of the tigers. The other genetic problems could also be caused by general inbreeding of the regular colored tigers but more than likely it is the fact that humans will keep alive animals that would not normally survive in the wild. Natural selection has been taken out of the equation when it comes to zoo animals.

  5. benguin says:

    Zoos are an important part of efforts to breed endangered species. Although each animal trapped in a zoo would probably be happier in the wild (you really can’t prove it one way or the other), in some instances the survival of the species depends on the efforts of zoos.
    I realize that we are the reason most species are endangered, but that’s all the more reason for us to do everything we can to restore our populations, and that means captivating some.
    Obviously, in-breeding genetically defective animals does not fall under the category of maintaining populations of endangered tigers, so not all practices of zoos are justified, but some certainly are. Don’t boycott zoos altogether.

  6. nunnja79 says:

    I agree with Nuria, Jan S, and Benguin; zoos perform a vital role in preserving endangered species through their captive breeding programs, and also further interests in conservation.
    The problem of circumventing natural selection (as raised by Jan S) is one that we see in our own societies and evolutionary trends; in an attempt to achieve immortality and perfect health, we allow the continuance of bloodlines which would have perished under the rule of natural law. We prevent nature from acting, and compound our problems: A case in point being the constant famine relief efforts in Africa. Famine happens because a society or bloodline cannot adapt to its environment, does not learn how to use the resources available to it, and is therefore removed by nature through starvation as a means of improving the species. And so it is with other animals, and yes, all you anti-Darwinists, we ARE animals! We should lessen our negative impact on the environment, give animals the wide berth they give us, and let nature take its course. And if it produces a few genetic mutations, so what?

    • 4awevans says:

      So, are the white tigers basically the retards for the tiger species?

      • KEISHA says:

        HEY TIGERS MAY BE DUMB 2 YOU BUT GUESS WHAT THEY ARE BETTER LOOKIN THAN YOU

        • ROSETTA BELL says:

          EVERY BODY JUST NEED 2 STOP KILLING TIGERS TIGERS HAVE FAMILIES AND TIGERS ARE IMPORTANT 2 ME AND OTHER PEIOPLE SO I SUGGEST YOU PEOPLE TO LEAVE THE TIGERS ALONE YOU WOULDNT LIKE IF SOMEONE CAME TO YOUR HABITAT AND STARRTED SHOOTING YOUR FAMILY SO THEY CAN TAKE THEM IN SO THEY CAN USE THEIR FUR FOR CLOTHING OR ANY THING ELSE (GOD MADE ANIMALS 4 A REASON AND HE MADE YOU 4 A REASON AS WELL SO YOU NEED TO STAND UP AND PUT YOUR RFOOT DOWN AND SPEAK YOUR MIND DONT BE AFRAID TO SPEAK HIOW YOU FEEL)
          BELEIVE IN YOURSELF AND TIGERS DONT EVER PUT YOUR HEAD DOWN WHEN TIMES GET HARD JUST DONT EVER BE AFRAID TO SPEAK WHAT’S ON YOUR MIND BRING PEACE TO THE WORLD EVRY LIVING THING DESERVES A LIFE

          -ROSETTA BELL

        • muhtasim says:

          i agreeeee tigers have souls as well!!! they not instruments and human play toys

      • Arian says:

        No they’re not retards some are just not bred of tooken well care of!!!DX

  7. Captive breeding is great for endangered species. Captive inbreeding however, is wrong on so many levels. This is indeed a form of animal abuse. White tigers are beautiful, but I would rather never see a white tiger again, than to know that for every normal white tiger I see there are probably 100s that are suffering the side effects of inbreeding. A sad story indeed.

  8. dudley says:

    Not all captive tigers are in zoos. Responsible zoos have nothing to do with such inbreeding. In fact Zoos tend to keep breeding records of all their charges and plan their breeding to avoid inbreeding.

    Many private people/organizations keep these animals and continue the inbreeding. [Think Siegfried & Roy, for example].

    Lighten up on the zoos.
    Just sayin’…

  9. I’m the one who originally created and published the cartoon seen above. To answer Jan S about sources for finding information on white tiger genetics, I would direct you to http://www.bigcatrescue.org/cats/wild/white_tigers.htm who got their information from research conducted by Dr. Ron Tilson, head of the Species Survival Plan and expert on Bengal tigers. He does indeed go one to say that the white genetic mutation can occur in the wild, but that the chances of this happening are 1 in 10,000.

    Most zoos do not inbreed these white tigers themselves. But roadside zoos and non-accredited zoos are allowed to purchase white tigers from private breeders who do. Most private breeders operate in either Florida or Texas, since these states have the fewest number of laws regulating exotic animal ownership. I would NEVER support any zoo which gets their white or golden tabby tigers from ‘undisclosed’ sources, as this is pretty much code for ‘we got it from a tiger farm.’ Such tiger farms have experienced fatality rates as high as 80% or more among inbred tigers, and anyone who supports this mess is only encouraging the cruelty to continue.

    For this reason, I ONLY support AZA-accredited zoos.
    For more information the AZA, please visit: http://www.aza.org/

  10. Paige says:

    Thanks for your comment Sarah, and for your efforts to make this information available. We want to help any way we can.

    You take some amazing photos and I hope everyone will go check them out.

  11. Jan S says:

    Thanks Sarah for filling us in on those facts. The inbreeding of mutated and deformed tigers are no doubt the result of “private backyard” breeders, much like the many backyard dog breeders that help populate our animal shelters.

  12. Cheryl F says:

    Inbreeding is sick and wrong no matter the species. It should be forbidden by world-wide law to prevent its cruelty and to cease all inbreeding of all species.

  13. Adding to what Cheryl F was saying, the inbreeding also decreases the number of liable tiger candidates for contribution to the Species Survival Plan. At this time, America is NOT directly involved in the Bengal tiger SSP program partly due to the fact that so many of our Bengals have been cross-bred and inbred. They’re a real genetic jumble of different subspecies and related lineages, and keeping track on them, even if they’ve been registered in zoological databases, can be difficult.

  14. Nate says:

    Who cares, white tigers are BA!

  15. B Nelson says:

    Wow. We have so many naturally beautiful animals, why would anyone feel we need to “invent” something different. I suppose if all tigers were naturally white somebody would have “engineered” an orange one.

  16. A says:

    If an animal is endangered, what is the use of keeping its population up if that population isn’t in the wild?

    Eventually all tigers will live in zoos. What is the point of that? We don’t need to keep the population thriving in captivity, we need to change the conditions we’ve created in the wild.

  17. Jemma g says:

    Inbreeding is disgusting and wrong and causes unwanted problems no matter what the species is. As the pictures above show, severe deformaties are produced and this seriously diminishes the animals life and health. In breeding to get required profiles is ridiculous the animals are perfect the way they are. White tigers are not all in bred, the statement is technically incorrect as it is a natural recessive gene that only happens to be a problem when the breeder selects the genes that are used, this is what causes problems. When left to mate naturally, although the chance of white tigers is seriously reduced, the cubs produced are healthy and perfectly formed, although they may be white, when inbred they are not always perfectly formed and tend to have problems so this should really be disregarded as saying that white tigers are man made. Its not technically true.

  18. Actually, the article does a pretty good job of explaining that white tigers can occur naturally in the wild. The issue is that in order to get the white gene to show, both Bengal tiger parents need to have a copy of it. In nature, the chances of this happening are about 1 in 10,000. In cases such as this, the tiger cubs are usually very healthy, but there have been multiple reports of mothers attempting to smother or refusing to nurse these abnormally-colored offspring. Researchers believe that this is because adult wild tigers instinctively know that white and golden tabby tigers have a lesser chance of surviving past their first year than normal ones.

    In captivity, the only way for two copies of the white gene to meet is through repeated inbreeding. Not all offspring will be white, though, even if the parents were inbred. Some of the litter may be golden tabby or normal orange. Breeders will often display these cats and say “We’re not inbreeding! See? That tiger is not white or golden tabby; he’s orange!”
    The fact is, said orange tiger only received one copy of the white gene instead of two, and can still be bred with a another already-inbred tiger to produce more abnormally-colored cubs. The issue with this, of course, is that since all white tigers come from one single cat (named Mohan) who was inbred to his own offspring, there is no possible way for inbreeding to NOT occur.

  19. xxx says:

    i think this is a lie there are several known white tigers in the wild.yes some are deformed for the reasons stated but you can not put this on all of them

    also not all zoos are bad i have been to several zoos my fave been chester zoo because the animals are not over crouded and they are well looked after

  20. Sorry, XXX. I wish it were a lie, as well. But the last report of a white tiger seen in the wild was in 1858. That tiger was later reported dead. Today, all captive tigers come from one single cat named Mohan, which, if you know anything about genetics, means that they are pretty much like the royal family of big cats.

    On the note of zoos, I do believe that many stand for a good cause. If they have conservation in mind, though, they will not breed white tigers or other abnormal animals like ligers and such. Such practice has no place in modern animal care.

  21. Stephen says:

    Just out of curiosity (and NOT totally believing wikipedia) there ARE supposed to be other lines other than Mohan…..

    Add that to breeding with normal orange tigers that also have part of the white tiger genetic make up…

    Read sections :-

    Tony, Bagheera, and Frosty: A new strain

    and especially

    The Orissa strain

    No bengal.. only Amur..

    As well as the comments “Strabismus is associated with white tigers of mixed Bengal/Siberian ancestry. Strabismus is directly linked to a gene and is not a separate consequence of inbreeding”

    Any thoughts?

  22. Sorry for the delayed reply in answering your question, Stephen.

    Unfortunately, claims of white tigers being unrelated to the original breeding founder (Mohan, mentioned above) are completely unfounded. I have even emailed the directer of Dreamworld Australia’s Tiger Island, mentioned in the wikipedia article you are referring to. He denies all claims that their tigers are not inbred, and (reluctantly) admits that they indeed are.

    What you have to consider is the fact that zoos were not required to keep studbook information until the 1980s. No known carriers of the white gene had occurred anywhere in captivity outside of Mohan’s bloodline during the years prior to that point. But since zoos wee not required to keep track of which tigers in which zoos mated with who, it became very difficult for conservationists to track which tigers had good, non-inbred genetics.

    For this very reason, no Begal Tigers from the United States are allowed to participate in the Species Survival Plan. Almost all of them are suspected to be in some way related to each other, but it’s nearly impossible to tell without DNA testing. Of course, testing every tiger in the US would be impossibly expensive and therefore impractical.

    Whoever wrote the information on Wikipedia was probably mistaken into thinking that only white tigers could produce white offspring, which would naturally make them believe that an orange tiger mating with a white tiger to produce white offspring would not be inbreeding. But any captive carrier of the white gene is already the product of inbreeding. So there is still a high chance that the resulting offspring will suffer and die.

  23. morgan mason says:

    my favorit animal is a lion tigers and jaguars and everone asks me are white tigers helthy and i will say no then they will ask why because they cant blend in with the grass like the balgle tiger can because of this there is so many tigers left in this world there is ony about 200,000 left and i have seen that tiger that you guys have on this website the on that was aboused it got taken out of the wild and got aboused badly help the tigers even if you dont know how care about them!!!!!!!

  24. A.PAY says:

    Hi I would be interested to know more about the white lions.I believe that in the 70’s some cubs were taken from the wild in South Africa and put in the zoo at Pretoria as it was thought they couldn’t survive in the wild. There seem to be a lot of them in captivity now. Is this a similar case to that of the white tigers. I have also read that some conservation bodies are re-introducing them into South Africa at the same time trying to get them recognised as a seperate subspecies.Any thoughts or information would be appreciated.

  25. White lions are a more common occurance than white tigers, as their color difference is caused by a recessive gene as opposed to a freak mutation. It’s a lot like melanism among leopards or jaguars. Because of this, they’re not as inbred as tigers, but are still not safe from irresponsible breeding.

    The issue with white lions in the wild is that they don’t survive well due to their coloration, and don’t usually pass on the white gene since females are actually attracted to males with darker manes (darker-maned males usually have more testosterone, and are therefore better-suited to caring for a pride).

    People who believe that white lions are a subspecies are greatly mistaken. This is not the case. As with white tigers, they are considered to be ‘genetic aberrations’ by conservation groups and zoologists worldwide.

    White lions which are released into reserves will eventually die out due to lioness’ attraction to males with darker manes, and will be displaced by stronger, normally-pigmented males.

  26. johhny says:

    Just to let you know the picture of the deformed white tiger at the top of this page is NOT from big cat rescue. He is infact from Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. His name was Kenny (Kenny Rogers), and he was rescued from private breeder in Bentonville Arkansas. He passed away in June 2007 due to melanoma.

  27. michelle says:

    I think zoo’s are a good thing.. It helps keep the animals safe and protected from hunters ect.. I think though if they are gonna keep them in a zoo they should breed them as much as possible so that maybe they can have a chance to become more populaur in the world again. If we can get enough places to breed them then maybe we can help save them and bring them back before they are all gone.,.

  28. lala says:

    Inbreeding is so wrong. White tigers are cute but a product of animal abuse! It isn’t fair. I’m only 13 and my voice doesnt’ seem to matter much but please save the tigers!! p.s.Lala ain’t my real name

  29. It’s actually really creepy, I always thought they were gorgeous but now that I know they are inbred I’m somewhat put off.

  30. SadMan says:

    Awwwwwwwwwwww

  31. Stacey says:

    This is really sad, what is the next thing that will find out, that polar beers are not really white. They where genetic made.

  32. -- says:

    White tigers do all come from one individual, but nowadays white tigers are genetically diverse because they bred with normal tigers as well. Of course, all the gene determining their color comes from Mohan, but so are all Y chromosomes. All humans share an ancestor “Eve” according to examinations of the mitocondria, but we are not all breeding by any normal sense of the term. The genepool expanded as the number of white tigers increased to a point where in breeding is no longer a problem when pairs are selected in a normal manner. All the problems come from the private evil breeders. Without them, white tigers are fine.

  33. TigerLover71439 says:

    this is sick. this is what i’m writing about for my feature article for school. i’m in the sixth grade. i REALLY, REALLY, REALLY love tigers.but not enough to see them suffer all this pain for ur own personal and selfish use. :(
    yours truly, tigerlover71439

  34. a verry sad person says:

    that is so stupid who would do that to such beautiful animals :( aww man this sucks :(

  35. i heat my life says:

    i heat my life i heat my life i want to die just leave me alone i want to die :-(

    • ROSETTA BELL says:

      I HEAT MY LIFE DONT SAY THAT GOD WILL BLESS YOU WITH A BLESSING AS SOON AS HE CAN

      BE STRONG DONT GIVE UP

      BELEIVE

  36. Elsie says:

    I stumbled across this page by accident and found it fascinating so have blown a morning reading a number of sites with regards to tigers. In my wanderings I found this site and wondered was your opinion of what they have to say? (BTW, I am very much in your camp.)

    http://www.felineconservation.org/fcf/white_tiger_conservation.htm

  37. LilRose says:

    well white tugers are a natral yhing when yu dnt imbreed!!!!!!!!!! wait for tht one 10000 chance thts juss sad :(

  38. very confused says:

    This is all very confusing I have checked several sites,but this is the first time I came across this information and Im not sure its true.
    If it is true there isn’t much I can do about it and I agree the zoos should be better and I know that tigers would be better off in the wild, but you cant release a tiger thats already been in captivity because they are no longer fit for the wild.

    P.S. I am doing a school report on white tigers so could you recommend some websites (at least 3) that agree with what your saying so I can check if its true?

    P.P.S. Sorry if I sound mean, but this is way different then what I found on other sites, even big cats rescue.

  39. White Tiger lover says:

    White tigers have always been my favorite animal and I was wondering if there is a way that we could keep the species going without interbreeding them?

  40. sampathchary says:

    who kills tiger they sucks & fucks.

  41. Leader in training says:

    It is incredible how much stuff us humans do to make something pretty to OUR own interest. I’ve been learning in school about these species about 1 out of six white tigers survive when being bred. Same goes for LIGERS! I find it one of the most physcotic things we do here on earth! We really got to stop this!

  42. ashley rae ironhawk says:

    For that to be messed with is wrong in so many ways…nature will come back and fight back if not us they will

  43. lonleygirl says:

    this poem is rue and beautiful i llove what it says and the words it uses.

  44. Sneji says:

    I think that specialists are not right because white tigers really exsist in the wild- bengal tigers and many others.Actually,most of the white tiger cubs can grow up and become adults.But we mustn’t even try to make the perfect white tiger because the result can be shoking.Let’s take Kenny for example-americans tried to make the perfect match but the result was this inbred tiger-a freak.We can’t change nature and we musn’t because sometimes nature plays really nasty games with our tries.

  45. ROSETTA BELL says:

    SORRY ABOUT THE SPELLING MISTAKES I WAS TYPING 2 FAST

    DONT FORGET
    2
    STAND UP
    AND

    SMILE

  46. Zelbubuth says:

    I agree with most of this, but saying that all zoos do this type of breeding is incorrect. In fact majority do everything in their power to avoid this. Especially facilities accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. If you doubt me look up Species Survival Plan (SSP). SSP’s are produced by doing tons of research regarding relatedness in zoos. Then they send out the recommendations to the accredited facilities. Most zoos spend tons of money in research and transportation costs trying to prevent inbreeding. This is especially hard with cases such as Amur tigers (previously known as Bengal tigers)where zoos only have a few representatives to work with. The biggest problems regarding these cats are circuses and private breeders.

  47. rainy says:

    Why do you think White Tigers cannot survive in the wild?

  48. Mae says:

    I admire whoever drew that picture above. I do similar things, drawing animals and writing in their words what they go through to make humans happy.

    I saw that image of the white tiger that’s on the top of the page a few years ago, and from a distance I thought it was someone being weird with Photoshop. When I started getting very interested in the environment, and started researching wild animal trade, I found that picture and learned it was fact. I was horrified.

    It’s a disgrace to human kind, using these animals for our entertainment. I cried the day I found out that people keep tigers as pets in their back yard, keep them in farms where they are underfed and sick, just to use their parts. One day, the world needs to realize what’s going on.

  49. Brian Kron says:

    How would you know if white tigers hate their lives? It’s incredibly presumptuous and you could never know that. While they are inbred, there’s no reason they can’t have happy lives if taken care of properly. While zoos are often cramped and generally unnatural, they’re great learning and conservation tools to help with the general public.

  50. MR.WHITE says:

    The people who are breeding these poor tigers are robbing them of there uniqueness, tigers are ment to be tigers and you shouldn’t breed them against will to make white tigers. This causes many problems such as cancer, dwarfism, malnutrition, and many more things that usally would not happen in the wild. White tigers being created for money purpose’s only sharing what we think with other people can maybe save these poor creatures from being born so they do not suffer and the breeders of white tigers lose there money and hopefully just hopefully are thrown in jail for the many things they have done wrong.

  51. Miss W says:

    People are being way too emotional about this not to mention Big Cat Rescue is an extremist program who have former workers and even former friends outlining what BCR plans on doing. For one they are coercing ANYONE, responsible wild cat owner or not, to hand over their pets.

    Unfortunately because they post up pretty videos and can make something out of nothing, people believe largely what they say. No one questions their opinions and view it as fact because they are so called experts and “saviors” of animals when in fact they basically got those animals through purchase and breeding.

    Anyways to digress, I would agree that all white tigers are inbred. But i would also argue that ALL tigers are inbred as well. In the wild, tigers breed readily with mothers, fathers, sons and daughters. Despite their natural tendency to travel far away, encroaching human populations have forced them into smaller and smaller territories.

    So to me while some may say it’s comparing apples to oranges, you do in fact have a very inbred species as a whole and frankly that doesn’t hamper it’s ability to survive. Look at the cheetah and you can see that it’s survived a disastrous genetic bottleneck.

    The more you research the more you’ll realize this is just propaganda to get people to get very very upset at frankly nothing.

  52. Jessi McKean says:

    I completely agree with what they say. I have had an obsession with tigers since I was about ….4 or 5 years old and started doing REAL personal studies when I was in 2nd and 3rd grade. Now 18 and a senior in high school I know a LOT more then I know now. White Tigers are a beautiful creature but sadly they have been inbred and horrible made into something they shouldn’t have been.

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