A beloved tiger named Caesar — who was saved from neglect by a New Jersey wildlife sanctuary nearly 20 years ago — has died, the center announced this week.
Staffers at the Popcorn Park Animal Refuge in Forked River wrote on Facebook on Thursday that Caesar had died in his sleep in late March.
“Sunday morning when we came in we found Caesar still asleep,” the workers wrote. “We could not wake him. He had passed in his sleep.
“We were devastated, all we could do was gather around him and say our goodbyes.
“Caesar has crossed over the Rainbow Bridge to be with those who once also called Popcorn Park their home. Goodnight Caesar. We love you and miss you,” the post said.
Caesar came to the animal refuge in 2002 from what the staff described as a “so-called ‘sanctuary’” in Texas.
When Caesar arrived in New Jersey at a young age, his hair was just starting to grow back after a bad bout with ringworm.
“He was 2 when he arrived, and he never seemed to get any older. He just acted like a 2-year-old ‘cub’ all his life,” the staff wrote.
“He loved to play hide and seek just before he was supposed to come in for his dinner, he would hide behind one of the bigger rocks in his yard, thinking we couldn’t see his ears or his tail flicking behind him.”