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Mike, LSU's live tiger mascot, answers Reveille's questions

Lady Reveille had some hard-hitting questions for the only real tiger mascot living on a college campus. Meet Tiger Mike!

Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

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What’s the secret to a shiny coat?

I eat 20 pounds of food daily, so weekly I eat 140 pounds of food. My food is a formulated zoo carnivore diet, the same commercial food used for most of the large cats at the zoo. It comes in 5lb logs and has the consistency of hamburger meat. It consists of beef and all the necessary vitamins and minerals to maintain my ever growing needs. We also add a supplemental B vitamin once weekly, and Vitamin E capsules every night for healthy skin and hair coat and general well-being.

How’s it feel to have only made one home game so far this season? I made it to all 8 of ours, no big deal.

I’ve gone into Tiger Stadium for two games so far this year. On each game day, my caretakers open the door to my trailer, and it’s up to me as to whether or not I go into the trailer and then into the stadium; attendance is entirely up to me. I’m a cat, and I do what I want.

Are you offended that a human dresses in a tiger costume?

The human Mike the Tiger mascot is an important LSU tradition, and we are both beloved by LSU fans (me more so).

What’s the deal with Auburn and Missouri’s tiger mascots?

The tiger is an apex predator and, thus, is a powerful symbol. Auburn, Missouri and other universities are welcome to use it as their symbol, but I’m still the only live tiger living on a college campus in the U.S. That makes me special!

Have they ever put you in the car and said you were going to the park but taken you to the vet instead? Asking for a friend.

So far, my medical examinations have taken place in my habitat. The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine, which provides my care, is less than a mile away from my habitat. If I had to be moved there, it can be done quickly and safely using my travel trailer. I am royalty, nobody puts me "in the car."

Do you dream of cinnamon?

I like several scents, including cinnamon. My caretakers sometimes use essential oils to place the scent in my habitat for me.