The Louisiana Court of Appeal ruled last week that the permit held by the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete, La. to house Tony, a 550-pound, 12-year-old Bengal-Siberian tiger who lives in a 40-by-80-foot pen on the premises was invalid.

Tony. (Photo: S. Zaunbrecher)

The battle between truck stop owner, Michael Sandlin, the Animal Legal Defense Fund and other animal rights advocates to free Tony from his concrete cage, has lasted more than five years.

The three judges upheld an order barring the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries from granting a new permit to Sandlin or the truck stop to continue housing the animal because neither could prove rightful ownership.

Tony will remain in the cage where he was born and raised until all the appeals have been completed. If the truck stop loses the right to keep the animal, he will likely be sent to an animal sanctuary.

Source: Animal Legal Defense Fund.