The boxer posted in his Instagram account his photo with a two-month-old tiger from India, which he supposedly received as an early Christmas present while he was in Russia. Mayweather asked his Instagram followers to suggest a name for his new "pet".
Animal rights advocates and wildlife conservationists, however, saw a high possibility of a bad future for the tiger, even in the home of a rich athlete. PETA released the following statement to make this point:
"Mayweather can have anything he wants, and what he should want is an end to the wild-animal trade, not to be a facilitator of it. Tigers do poorly as “pets” – they belong in their native habitats, not in a cage in a celebrity’s home as a “show-off” prop, 100 percent certain to be discarded at a roadside zoo or a cheap circus or to meet some other tawdry end after they become too strong to handle and begin to show a will of their own.
"Wild animals kept as amusements never have a fighting chance at a natural life. Having been torn away from their mothers at a young age, many are violently beaten by trainers and all are deprived of what’s natural and important to them. PETA appeals to Floyd Mayweather to be a real champ for animals and allow his “Christmas present” to be moved to a wildlife sanctuary."
According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), wild tiger numbers are at an all-time low, with 97 percent of them gone now, in just over a century. "Tigers may be one of the most revered animals, but they are also vulnerable to extinction. As few as 3,200 exist in the wild today," said the WWF.