Nitro arrived at Carolina Tiger Rescue in 2009, with his enclosure-mate Apache. They had been rescued from a junkyard in Kansas after a lion there attacked a man. The three lions were relocated to the Detroit Zoo, and the search began for a home for the owner's two tigers. Luckily, Carolina Tiger Rescue could take them in.

Apache was very protective of Nitro, and would walk with him around their enclosure and get between Nitro and any tiger in a nearby enclosure that didn't seem friendly. As the Carolina Tiger Keepers observed them, they began to notice that Nitro didn't seem to focus very well and he would bump into trees and the enclosure fence. They came to understand that Nitro was blind.

One of the interns designed and made modifications to Nitro's enclosure, making sand paths to let him know he is close to the fence and scent-marking his water bowl. After a few days of learning to navigate his space, he stopped bumping into trees and gets around just fine. He is a friendly and curious cat and will greet both voices he knows and new visitors. Apache died in 2011 and Keepers were concerned that Nitro would take the loss badly. He was quiet for some time, but his trusting nature and sunny disposition quickly returned. Nitro lived until Spring 2013 - he was a very special tiger.

Nitro in Kansas.

Nitro relaxing on his sand path.


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