MOUNT VERNON, Maine (NECN) -- At DEW Animal Kingdom in Mount Vernon, Maine spring is baby season. There's baby pigs, a baby alpaca, even a baby monkey. Three bengal tigers, two are rare white tigers were the first ever born in Maine.
It's an exciting time for the owners and staff at DEW since successfully breeding endangered animals. The mother and father are both permanent residents at the facility. The man who brought them together is Bob Miner. A Vietnam veteran wounded in combat, for years Bob suffered from PTSD and a host of physical problems. Being with animals was the one place where he felt peace. His connection to them is unmistakable and very personal.
Most of the animals here were once kept illegally as pets or were in need of safer living conditions. The goal here is to make sure they are happy and help educate the public. During tiger feeding time Bob is teaching us that even wild animals respond better to women than to men.
The tigers are being hand raised because dad wasn't adjusting well to having them in the enclosure and in a few weeks they will go to new homes at similar non-profit animal education centers across the country.
It's a job Brian Garside is happy to do. He and his friend traveled up from Boston for the chance to have this amazing encounter.