Mike VII’s Vet: Time for a new tradition, no more stadium parades

Michelle Southern: Weekdays 2pm-7pm

LSU is proud of its new live mascot Mike VII, which came from a rescue facility in Florida. When Mike VI passed away, the school rejected offers from breeders, instead LSU System President F King Alexander says they wanted to save a Tiger that didn’t have a permanent home.

“He is here in a situation as a tiger that perhaps faced some impending doom down the road after he turned five years old,” said Alexander.

The 11-month-old male Tiger arrived on campus on August 15th and was allowed to roam in his newly renovated Tiger Habitat on Monday. Mike’s veterinarian, Doctor David Baker, says the Siberian-Bengal mix is enjoying his new surroundings.

“He was up at the front of his little enclosure, which was just a dirt lot, chuffing at us, which is a happy sound of greeting,” said Dr. Baker.

Previous live mascots at LSU were put into a small cage on football game days and paraded around the stadium. That will not happen with Mike VII. Dr. Baker says Mike will stay in his habitat, which will end the complaints from fans who never saw him during football weekends.

“They came in on Friday, he was locked up at night and then he either did or didn’t got to the game and so they couldn’t see him Saturday and then they left Sunday morning and he hadn’t been released yet so they came to Baton Rouge and never got to see him. This way people should get to see him.”

Here is an adorable video from WAFB’s Jacques Doucet of Mike chuffing with Dr. Baker.