A tiger called Thriller, who belonged to Michael Jackson when the entertainer lived at his Neverland ranch, has died of lung cancer.
The 13-year-old female had been living at actress and animal rights activist Tippi Hedren's wildlife preserve in California.
Hedren, who is best known for her roles in the Alfred Hitchcock films The Birds and Marnie, said Thriller had been cremated following a necropsy.
Workers at the Shambala Preserve in Acton are holding a private service for the big cat, whose ashes are being buried in a special area set aside for animals that die there.
Hedren, 82, said Thriller and her brother Sabu, who were born on November 20, 1998, lived with Jackson until May 4, 2006.
The singer's vet asked Hedren to take in the animals when he left Neverland for good.
Other Neverland animals, including giraffes, flamingos, orangutans, elephants and dozens of reptiles, were sent to other sanctuaries in other parts of the US.
Jackson, who died in 2009, often talked about his love of animals but he never called to check on the tigers and he never sent any money to help pay for their care, Hedren said.
A year after the tigers arrived, Hedren said staff sent a package of photos of Sabu and Thriller and T-shirts and other memorabilia to Jackson's children.
But she said: "We never heard a word back. I just think it's odd."
Hedren said Shambala did not have a lot of room, but she built a £50,000 habitat for Thriller and her brother next to a lake.
There were trees and a hill, and Thriller had a great life with Sabu, she said.
"Thriller was a real piece of work, one gutsy girl. She ruled Sabu's life," Hedren explained.
"It was humorous to watch the whole relationship. She did things to him that male tigers would normally never allow.
"She would steal food from him - that's unheard of. She ruled the roost, was very independent and tough."
Unlike many of the animals at the preserve, Thriller and Sabu arrived at the compound in excellent health both physically and emotionally, Hedren said.
There are 15 tigers at the compound but Sabu is now alone in the habitat he shared with Thriller, and he will probably stay that way. Tigers are solitary creatures in the wild.
Because Thriller was a famous tiger, she was very popular with visitors and media. "She didn't care. She was not a diva and didn't mug for the camera. We all loved her for it," said Hedren.