PETA's making a strong effort to get Doc Antle in the USDA's crosshairs ... filing a complaint and asking the department to investigate him over Lil Pump's recent visit.
The animal rights org fired off a letter to the U.S. Department of Agriculture formally requesting it investigate the 'Tiger King' star for apparent violations of the Animal Welfare Act at his Myrtle Beach Safari.
In the letter, obtained by TMZ ... Debbie Metzler, associate director of captive animal law enforcement, cited Lil Pump's trip there this week, and a video that shows him make "direct physical contact with a juvenile tiger."
She claims it violates the law requiring that “dangerous animals such as… tigers… or elephants must be under the direct control and supervision of a knowledgeable and experienced animal handler."
Then there's the Lil Pump encounter with the elephant, Bubbles. Metzler calls the stunt exceptionally dangerous because it could have spooked the elephant and triggered the elephant to bolt and potentially injure people. PETA wants the USDA to hold Antle accountable for any and all violations it discovers during its investigation.
As we reported ... Pump and his boys took a trip to South Carolina and had one helluva close encounter with Bubbles. Video shows Pump getting picked up by the elephant's trunk. The rapper damn near fell off before safely landing on his feet.