Killer Jaguar Had Mean Twin Named Osama

Posted Feb 27, 2007 by Carolyn E. Price

A Bolivian-born jaguar that killed a Denver zookeeper was well-behaved as a young cat but his twin was so mean that his handlers named him Osama.
Jorge, who killed Denver zookeeper Ashlee Pfaff, 27 on Saturday and was shot shortly thereafter, was a well-behaved young cat who had a twin brother who was so mean that his handlers named him Osama.
Jorge is Spanish for George and he was named after President Bush, said Margot Ugarteche, a veterinarian at the Santa Cruz Municipal Zoo of South American Fauna in Bolivia.
"Osama was always the more dominant of the two," Ugarteche said. "He was always rough with Jorge. That was the relationship we saw between them. Jorge wasn't bad, really," she said. "I don't know what could have happened. Perhaps because he was so well-behaved, the trainer (in Denver) thought she could trust him. But you never know with wild animals."
Ms. Pfaff was working alone and investigation found no fault with the enclosures doors, locks or gates, zoo spokeswoman Ana Bowie said.
"We don't know if she was going in, and we never will," Bowie said. "Why that door was open and what she was doing, we do not know."
Ms. Pfaff had undergone regular safety training for the jaguar exhibit, shadowed veteran keepers and attended mandatory safety meetings, officials said. A New Mexico native, she graduated with a biology degree from New Mexico State University in 2002 and started work at the zoo in 2005.
"Ashlee was a great zookeeper, she was dedicated to this institution, dedicated to her animals," Bowie said.