Pay For Reviews? Another lie by the animal exploiters.

Pay For Reviews? Another lie by the animal exploiters.

“Big Cat Rescue pays for Good Reviews”

Well, at least that’s what animal abusers say about us.

Then they post this screenshot (on left) from 2010:

PayGoodReviews

It is baffling that the bad guys keep posting a page that we posted in June 2010 and has been gone since about 2013. Our site is more than 10,000 pages and this was just a news post, so we never even thought about it again until the exploiters started posting old screen shots of it in 2013.  That’s when we took it down, since it didn’t serve any purpose since 2010.

Big cat breeders and exploiters use a screen shot from the WayBack Machine to back up their ridiculous claims that we pay for good reviews.  Anyone who can read can see that isn’t what we were suggesting at all. What we did was a short lived experiment to see if we could encourage people to take the time to add comments to articles about big cats in captivity, NOT give reviews of BCR.  And yet, year after year, the exploiters who feel threatened by our efforts to expose them keep posting it as their “proof” that we pay for reviews, something we have never, ever done and would not do.   Maybe they are just counting on the fact that the people they have duped into into being fans don’t care about the facts, or that they are viewing the screen shot on mobile phones and can’t read the small text.

The experiment quickly proved not useful or necessary.  Only one person ever submitted a bill for $11.00 for her work done from June 17, 2010 to September 26, 2010, and then decided she’d just comment on our behalf for free.  No one else ever asked to be paid for their time.

To see the original page yourself you can go to the WayBack Machine yourself and type in the old URL from that page:  http://bigcatrescue.org/ad-copy-help-wanted

There you can see the page more clearly and see that the bad guys didn’t start taking screen shots of it until 2013, three years after the idea had fizzled.

It also doesn’t matter to them that we have responded, back in 2013, that only one person, submitted a bill for $11.00 for her work, and then decided she’d just comment on our behalf for free. And she was not paid for reviews, she was paid for taking the time to comment on articles about big cats. The people who say we pay for good reviews don’t care about the truth and use this old 2010 screen shot offering to pay for people taking time to comment on articles and falsely claim that today we pay for reviews.

Here is the screen capture of the spreadsheet I set up for that one person and you can see that it started on June 17, 2010 and ended on September 26, 2010. You can see from the text of the page above and the links from the spreadsheet below that Big Cat Rescue never asked anyone to write a good review about us in exchange for compensation.

Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 3.16.49 PM
InstagramDeletesBCR2016Aug16What we were trying to do was to educate the media about why it is always abusive for people to pay to see or handle big cat cubs.  As it turned out, people didn’t want to be paid to do the right thing.  They did it for free and it began to change the way people thought about using cubs as pay to play props.
The people showing you the screen shot above and saying that Big Cat Rescue pays for good reviews are lying to you and using you to try and silence us.  They seem to have gotten enough of their duped followers to file false reports about Big Cat Rescue with Instagram that Instagram temporarily shut down our page for a few days until we could reach Instagram to explain who was generating the false complaints and why.
Those same followers posted hundreds of false, one star reviews, in a three day period, on our own Facebook page and Google Plus page and probably everywhere else they could think of.  The hatefulness of people who follow these cub exploiters just leaves me feeling like there is no hope of saving wild cats from extinction because it is the private possession these very tiger mills promote that provides a legal smokescreen for illegal poaching.
The bottom line is, people like Eddie Serio, Joe Schreibvogel Maldonado, “Doc” Antle, Mario Tabraue, Tim Stark, Kathy Stearns and others like them, hate that the conversation has changed and that people have learned the truth about the cruelty inherent in breeding wild cats for life in cages.
Please share this page with any of your friends who have been misled by animal abusers.

Below is the exact text, copied from the WayBack Machine since the page is no longer on our site:

 You will note that the bad guys don’t want you to see the entire page.

Ad Copy Help Wanted

Earn up to $5.00 US for posting a comment on a big cat news story!

We will pay $2.00 per post, as evidenced by a screen shot of your good post on news and popular blog sites when the topic of exotic cats are discussed.

If you care about lions, tigers, leopards, cheetahs, jaguars and other big cats then we need you to speak up for them. Almost every day there is a story posted in an online newsletter or blog about exotic cats. Most of these have comment sections, but you have to sign up for an account, wait for the vendor to send you log in information and then you can post your comment.  We at Big Cat Rescue try to comment on every story out there, but are far too busy to keep up with them all.

These comment sections are often read with more enthusiasm and often are more informative than the actual article because reporters often don’t do their homework. This is a great opportunity to explain for people, who cared enough to read the article, about why big cats should not be kept as pets, used as props, jailed in zoos and other abuses.

Our website can give you all of the details you need to post accurate, pertinent information that tells people why it is so bad to breed ligers and white tigers and why we should be protecting these animals in the wild and not farming them for their parts or breeding them for lives of confinement and deprivation.

If you have excellent English grammar skills, can make a short but good statement about why big cats should be protected in the wild and not bred and used in captivity then we will pay you $2.00 for each successful post that you send us a screenshot, URL and the log in info for if you also tell people they can find out more on the subject at Big Cat Rescue.

We will pay a bonus of $1.00 if you can work in a link to Big Cat Rescue dot org, since most vendors will not allow an actual link and some vendors will even refuse this sort of suggested link. We will pay an extra $2.00 if you create a profile at the news vendor WITH a link to bigcatrescue.org in your profile.  If possible your user name should be BigCatRescue or BigCatRescuer but if these are already taken, you can use your own alias.

How to Start Today!

To find stories that have already been written and begin posting right away go to the original links for each of the stories posted on our blog at: http://bigcatnews.blogspot.com/

Most of the stats you will need are updated daily here: http://bigcatrescue.org/big_cat_news.php

This is an example of how to collect your fees.  Send a screenshot of the article text like this:

Ad Copy

And send a screenshot of the submitted, approved post like this:

Comment

Send the URL and make sure it appears at the top of your screen shot like the sample above.  Jing is a free product to capture such screen shots on PCs or Macs.

If you also set up a profile with a link back to Big Cat Rescue that is actually a clickable link, then send a screen shot of that as well and the user name and password that you set up to post this comment as these profiles will become the property of Big Cat Rescue so that we can access the news vendor on other stories about exotic wild cats when they occur if you are no longer helping us keep these current.

Limitations:

Only post facts from our website bigcatrescue.org that support our mission of caring for cats and ending the trade.

We will not pay for the posting of inaccurate information so be sure that you understand our philosophy, which is that wild animals should not be bred for life in cages and should not be used for their parts, for entertainment, for ego boosting, or for anything other than to educate the public about why they should be protected in the wild and not kept in cages.

Do not engage in name calling, or behavior that would diminish your credibility.

Only one comment per story per profile.

We must be able to verify your posts by visiting the links and seeing that your posts have been kept live and not deleted for any abuse of the vendor’s posting policies.

Your submission for payment should be well organized, with the images labeled in such a way as to be able to group them into each news vendor if you have more than one screenshot to prove the posting and the profile page as well as the story it was posted to, so that we know our comments are being posted on pages that are discussing wild or exotic cats.

Contact MakeADifference at bigcatrescue.org with your screenshots so that you can be paid via PayPal.

More links that you can use for background information

http://bigcatrescue.org/FAQ.php

http://bigcatrescue.org/cats/wild/white_tigers.php

http://bigcatrescue.org/000news/0articlesbybcr/2008DyingToBeHeld.htm

http://bigcatrescue.org/laws/statelawsexoticcats.htm

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/home/

Bashing Sanctuaries

Bashing Sanctuaries

Big Cat Rescue is frequently accused of “bashing other sanctuaries” and nothing could be further from the truth.

Big Cat Rescue wants to end the private possession of exotic cats because no wild cat, who is hardwired to roam free, should ever be bred for life in a cage.  The best way to accomplish our mission is to help legitimate sanctuaries become successful enough that they can rise above living hand to mouth and actually begin to end the abuses at their root.  The only people who are claiming that Big Cat Rescue bashes other sanctuaries are people who are NOT running legitimate sanctuaries.

To define legitimate I will use the US Fish & Wildlife Services’ definition of a sanctuary which is one that does NOT:

Buy
Sell
Breed
Allow public contact with the cats
Take animals offsite for exhibition

Naturally, we are prone to devote more of our time and energy to helping sanctuaries that are verified or accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries, or those who are really trying to achieve those standards of care before applying for accreditation.

Here is just some of the evidence that Big Cat Rescue helps good sanctuaries

This is just what we could think of, off the top of our head at the end of each year in our annual reports, which are all online at BigCatRescue.org It does not include the fact that just about every day we are on the phone, email or social sites helping other sanctuaries become stronger and more influential in ending the trade in wild cats.  The following also does not include all of the times we have partnered with other legitimate sanctuaries to do large scale rescues because those are all covered in our annual reports and were more about helping the animals, than providing help to sanctuaries.

2016

Big Cat Rescue partnered with Animal Defenders International to provide a lifetime home to Hoover the tiger after they successfully shut down circus acts that use wild animals in several countries. This alleviated ADI from the $10,000 per year commitment to provide lifetime care.

Created ZooCollege.com to go along with the “sanctuary in a box” concept we’ve been sharing with good sanctuaries.  We charge the public to take the course, but offer a free coupon to all accredited and verified sanctuaries that is good for all of their staff and volunteers without limitation.  We have offered the course and sanctuary in a box to those who really are trying to do the right thing, but haven’t achieved verification yet by GFAS.

Big Cat Rescue will be presenting at conferences in California and Colorado to legitimate sanctuaries on topics such as how to train and retain skilled volunteers and going beyond the day to day care of rescued animals to actually ending the trade.  We will be hosting an event at CITES CoP 17 in S. Africa to save wild tigers.  Part of the work there will be in demonstrating that the thousands of tigers, who are currently being farmed for their bones, can be transferred to sanctuaries that can provide lifetime care.

2015

One of our Senior Keepers went to help a troubled sanctuary in the U.S. again as they had no staff and helped implement training programs, such as those taught at ZooCollege.com to insure their ability to train future staff.  She also helped run a sanctuary for big cats in Ethiopia for Born Free, while they were seeking a qualified CEO.

Went to Mexico to speak to the government and the press about how to build a sanctuary for the lions and tigers that were going to be confiscated from illegal circus and cub petting schemes.  Through photos and videos I (Carole Baskin) gave the best advice I could about how Mexico could build its own sanctuary in such a way that the lives would be humane for the lions and tigers AND could be run on local and international volunteer help AND be self sustaining financially, if done right. Transparency and putting the needs of the animals first were the most critical aspects and not concepts that are usually considered synonymous with politicians.  http://bigcatrescue.org/mexico-sanctuary-conference/

Created 23 Intranet sites, which are sort of a sanctuary-in-a-box site, for other sanctuaries to use.  These came complete with every training video, training manual, chart and idea that we use to run Big Cat Rescue.  We do this for free for sanctuaries that do not breed, buy, sell, trade nor allow contact w/ wild animals.

Every year we donate countless tickets to other animal rescue groups to use in their fundraisers.  We often will host volunteer appreciation parties for them at no cost as well.  We are so pleased to provide assistance to organizations that are saving big cats (and little cats) across the globe!

You will see some repetition on some items below because we offered that help over multiple years.  The Wounded Warriors tours have continued till this day as well.

2014

Saving Lions.  March 15th’s March for Lions may have just seemed like one heck of a party, but thanks to everyone who came and fundraised for the event, we were able to net $10,000 and we wanted to spend it on ways to help lions outside our gates.   The movers and shakers behind the Global March for Lions were Chris and Bev Mercer of CannedLion.org.  Any time we need the truth on what is happening in Africa regarding lions, we always turn to Chris and Bev.  They have been the leading force against lion hunting and pay to play schemes that pimp out lion cubs, only to sell them into canned hunts as easy targets.  They would never ask for help, but this event made it possible for us to contribute $7,000. to their continued efforts to ban lion hunting.  Chris said this is the equivalent of a small fortune in his world and that he will put it to good use in protecting lions.

We were impressed with Nat Geo’s Cause an Uproar campaign and donated $1,000. to their BuildABoma.org project.  This will build two bomas to help protect lions from being killed for harming livestock.

We have long been impressed by Animal Defenders International because they are a small organization that has been winning huge victories for animals.  What really brought them up on our radar was the amazing work they have done in the past few years to ban circus acts that use wild animals in 40 + countries.  If you saw Blackfish and thought, “big cats need a movie like that,” then you have to see Lion Ark.  We saw it and were so enamored that we sent $1,100. to help with their efforts to free all big cats from circuses.

Before the March for Lions even began we sent the early money we raised, in the amount of $900. to Walking for Lions to be a major sponsor for the cycling event from Kenya to Botswana to raise awareness of the plight of lions.  So, thanks to your generosity we are raising awareness, supporting boots on the ground, giving locals a way to live with lions, rescuing lions from circuses and letting everyone know that when you pay to play with a cub, the cub is always the one who pays with his loss of life and liberty.

Big Cat Rescue was recruited to offer our expertise, guidance and funding in the expansion of facilities to house jaguars who are rescued from being killed and sent to the Belize Zoo.  The zoo does not breed their cats, but cannot release the jaguars either because there are too many in the area and they get in trouble with people.

We were a sponsor for Animal Coalition of Tampa’s Stride for Strays, as we are every year and donated countless tickets to other animal rescue groups to use in their fundraisers.

2013

We sent our videographer to sanctuaries that could not afford their own video production AND aired their promo videos on our popular channel.

and

 

 

Big Cat Rescue was recruited to offer our expertise and guidance in the development of a rescue center in Spain that will be broadening their focus from primates to now include big cats.  AAP Primadomus is located on more than 400 acres in Villena and currently houses a variety of primates that have been rescued from private ownership, circuses, and laboratories. They are now expanding their focus to also rescue countless lions and tigers that are in need across their country.

In an effort to prepare for this project nearly a dozen experts were invited to a symposium that focused on sharing information regarding the proper care of big cats in captivity, emergency protocol development, and enclosure design. Big Cat Rescue President Jamie Veronica and volunteer veterinarian Justin Boorstein travelled to Spain and joined experts from Italy, South Africa, France, Austria, the Netherlands and all across the United Kingdom.

Over the course of three days the team worked tirelessly to provide as much information as possible to the members of not only AAP Primadomus, but its origin center Stitching AAP. Stitching AAP is a rescue center for apes, monkeys and small exotic animals in the Netherlands that was founded more than 35 years ago.

The symposium was a huge success. Big Cat Rescue will continue to work with AAP remotely throughout the development process. We are so pleased to provide assistance to organizations that are saving big cats across the globe!

See a digital rendition they did from the plans submitted:

 

 

Loaned one of our Green Level Keepers (Kathryn Quaas) to Wildcat Sanctuary for 5 weeks of brutal winter weather to help while they were hiring & training new staff.

Big Cat Rescue provided our CatLaws.com service to Animal Coalition of Tampa in their efforts to send a powerful message to the Hillsborough County Commissioners on the subject of TNR.  Trap, Neuter and Return.  We similarly supported Be The Way Home effort in Hillsborough County that protects feral cats from being rounded up and killed.  The Board of County Commissioners responded with ordinances to protect feral cats and their caregivers.  http://youtu.be/o1ve94nYbP4

Presented at Tigers 4 Tigers which is a coalition of all colleges that have tiger mascots who are working to save the tiger.  It was also the last place for the good friend and world famous and much beloved tiger expert Ron Tilson to make a presentation before his untimely death this year.  http://youtu.be/o1ve94nYbP4

Hosted 2nd annual SkipAHolics reunion tour to thank the many people who help us keep an eye on our cats via the webcams.  http://youtu.be/IuKXK4r7PEo

We were a sponsor for Animal Coalition of Tampa’s Stride for Strays, as we are every year.

2012

After delivering a couple of free webinars for the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS), and hosting their first in person 2 day Workshop in 2011, Patty Finch asked if the board of GFAS could use our facilities for their meeting. We were delighted to meet the members of the board that we had not met before and were proud to show off Big Cat Rescue to all of them.  Howard Baskin presented on our fundraising streams and the history of Big Cat Rescue and I shared how we use google Apps and how we manage over 100 top notch volunteers.

Big Cat Rescue provided our CatLaws.com service to Animal Coalition of Tampa in their efforts to send a powerful message to the Hillsborough County Commissioners on the subject of TNR.  Trap, Neuter and Return.

As with every year we supplied Free Passes, Certificates for Feeding Tours and Keeper Tours, and Two For One Passes to many other animal causes to use in their fundraising efforts.  We donate primarily to those organizations that are providing services to cats of all sizes.  We do donate to some human related fundraisers as well, but animal causes make up 3% of all charities and yet compete for less than 1% of all donated dollars.

2011

Helped two other sanctuaries, who didn’t have the staff or equipment, to transfer a cougar from Texas to Nevada.

After delivering a couple of free webinars for the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS), Patty asked if we would host their first in person 2 day Workshop. Howard Baskin presented on our fundraising streams and the history of Big Cat Rescue, Jeff Kremer presented on donor recognition while giving the group of 20+ attendees a tour, Chris Poole spoke on social marketing and networking, Patty Ragan shared the value of hiring a coach, Kari Bagnall illustrated how to get the most out of a tabling event, Patty Finch taught grant writing, teaching your board how to be helpful and how to avoid “founder’s syndrome” and I shared how we use google Apps, how we manage over 100 top notch volunteers, why it is important to have a plan and stick to it.

Big Cat Rescue later hosted HSUS Sanctuary CEO’s for their annual retreat and gave them an inside look at how we operate.  In both the GFAS and HSUS workshops we shared our Intranet site along with all of our training documents and all of the assets to create a “sanctuary in a box.”  All of these tools are included on our website behind a $1.00 pay wall so that anyone who wishes to improve their facility has access to everything we do.

Big Cat Rescue also helped the Humane Society Legislative Fund in their work to end puppy mills because the same laws would protect cats and kittens from use in kitten mills as well.

Big Cat Rescue provided our CatLaws.com service to Animal Coalition of Tampa in their efforts to send a powerful message to the Hillsborough County Commissioners on two subjects.  1. Was to fund the voucher program for spaying and neutering dogs and cats for low income owners.  2. Was to ban the cruel practice of chaining dogs.

2010

America’s injured veterans program has continued through 2016 so far, as of the date of this writing.

2009

America’s injured veterans have found Big Cat Rescue a place of tranquility where they can surround themselves with beauty and grace;  a respite from all that they have endured protecting our country.  It started with one group and now they come to visit quite frequently.  It’s on the house and we provide lunch when we can as well by asking donors to contribute.  They have done their part in keeping Americans free and we are doing our part to fight for that same freedom for the big cats.

On June 12, 2009 Howard Baskin was awarded Citizen of the Year by the Upper Tampabay Chamber of Commerce for all of his volunteer efforts as a Chamber board member, committee member and for his board and committee duties provided to Rotary and his community involvement with children, the elderly, the disabled and Big Cat Rescue.

2008

Big Cat Rescue offered a $5,000 reward for information resulting in the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for shooting a young, female tiger to death. Her body was found next to an apartment complex and I-35E in Dallas, TX on Christmas Day. This was our first offer of a reward to solve a crime and it generated leads but no convictions.

We donated thousands of dollars worth of our tours to other worthy animal non profits including Animal Coalition of Tampa, Boxer Rescue, the Humane Society, the Lakeland SPCA, the Largo SPCA, National Humane, and many, many others.

America’s injured veterans have found Big Cat Rescue a place of tranquility where they can surround themselves with beauty and grace;  a respite from all that they have endured protecting our country.  It started with one group and now they come to visit quite frequently.  It’s on the house and we provide lunch when we can as well by asking donors to contribute.  They have done their part in keeping Americans free and we are doing our part to fight for that same freedom for the big cats.

Offered to provide mounted cougar and a native bobcat who was road kill to the Florida Conservation Commission to use in their exhibit at the fairgrounds, if they would stop using live cats.

2007

The U.S. State Department enlisted our help in saving the critically endangered Amur Leopard because of our ability to reach so many people who care about wild cats and their habitat.

2006

Katrina HelpWe provided off site housing for Humane Alliance members who have come here to help ACT set up a low cost spay and neuter center and offered to transport animals to and from the clinic once a week for the rescue groups.  We hosted team building events for the Emergency Animal Response Service group and gave them 150 free passes to give to all of the volunteers who help in times of disaster nationwide.  We donated to all of our favorite animal causes (too many to list) giving them Expeditions and Free Passes to auction off to help them raise money to provide services for domestic pets.  The Humane USA PAC (the nation’s largest political action committee for animals) hosted its Kids, Cats & Candidates day at the sanctuary.  We donated an Expedition to raise money for our long time supporters Mario & Lenore Infanti who are facing health issues.

When our beloved tiger, Nini, died Brian Czarnik wanted her to live on and so we sponsored a tiger in the wild in Way Kambas Park.  The money donated will help protect the tigers in this critical reserve.  We worked with the Smithsonian Institution in a project to examine the population biology of small carnivores in Gabon, West Africa and Borneo.  We hosted a party and raised more than $1000.00 to aid the campaign that would require the government to provide emergency plans for people who won’t leave their pets. This bill became law in 2006 and will protect America’s pets in times of disaster.  We also sent proceeds from our Fur Ball to Lewa Conservancy in S. Africa and invested in creating eco-tourism in Guyana, South America to protect the wild cats in that area.  At the request of the World Wildlife Fund in Poland we have provided photographs for them to use in creating a handbook for border guards to prevent the illegal trade in exotic cats and their pelts.

2005

We invited other animal welfare groups to use our Legislative tools in customized banners on their web sites so that they could encourage their visitors to write their representatives about important animal welfare issues. We hosted the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk for 600 walkers who raised 50,000 for Alzheimer’s victims. Worked with PAKT to help them negotiate a deal with the circus and AZA for promoting responsible, life time care for animals who have had to work for a living. Continued to help ACT by driving the Spay Day trailer each month so that 100-160 cats per month can be spayed.

Charities that we donated to this year in the form of Free Passes to our sanctuary:  100 passes to No More Homeless Pets Adopt-a-thon 30 passes and gift certificate for a Big Cat Expedition to Florida Voices for Animals, Donated a Big Cat Expedition, a Feeding Tour and more to Animal Coalition of Tampa for their Some Enchanted Evening fundraiser and the same again to their Stride For Strays walk-a-thon. Donated the use of our facility to the Humane Society of Tampa Bay for their Volunteer Appreciation party and to National Humane Society for their volunteer and donor recognition party at Christmas. Donated an Expedition and Two for One Passes to SPOT and worked with them to create a segment on Pinellas County’s Public Access Channel. Hosted a party for a team of Florida Panther protectors.

We raised 1250.00 each for EARS and HSUS to aid the animal victims of Katrina and 1000.00 each for conservation programs to save the margay in Brazil, to help start an eco tourism lodge in Guyana and to assist Lewa in Africa.

2004

lion vs tiger ligersWe covered ad costs for The Association of Sanctuaries annual conference in March to insure that the people who need the training will know it is available.  We also paid expenses for three of the speakers on Cage Building, Operant Conditioning and the No More Homeless Pets approach to companion animal abandonment.  We shared the secret to our high search engine placement with TAOS and CWAPC and members of both organizations. We joined the Sanctuary Workers And Volunteers Association SWAVA and provided material for them to launch their campaign. We send out news alerts to everyone in our new Yahoo group and in the TAOS Yahoo group and include a Tip of the Day feature in which we share ideas that have worked for us. We gave permission to Florida’s state government site, at their request, to use our photos to illustrate why we should protect the Florida Panther.

Charities that we donated to this year:  100 passes to No More Homeless Pets Adopt-a-thon and gift certificate for a Big Cat Expedition, 50 passes and gift certificate for a Big Cat Expedition to Florida Voices for Animals, 50 passes to Clearwater High school’s Project Graduation, 100 passes to Dress For Success, 300 passes to The National Humane Societies spay/neuter and adoption programs.  Big Cat Expedition to Clearwater Chamber of Commerce’s annual fundraiser. Donated a Big Cat Expedition and several Two for One Passes to Animal Coalition of Tampa for their Spay Day fundraiser. Big Cat Expedition for two and 200 passes to the Tampa Museum of Art. 1000 passes and a 1500. Expedition Package was donated to the Global Understanding’s Carousel Ball. There were many, many more that we donated to this year that we did not keep stats on.

We offered to let No More Homeless Pets – HC and Florida Voices for Animals utilize our legislative program in a manner that is branded for their constituents.

Helping Wild Cats in the Wild

And that doesn’t even count all of the work we fund or help in the wild to save exotic cats.  The breeders and dealers often say they contribute to conservation via the Rare Species Fund, but we can’t find any proof that it is even a non profit.  We do know that it’s run by one of the most prolific cub breeders for the pay to play schemes and that he funds a lobbyist to oppose any bills that would end his cub handling operations.  Here is the real work, saving real cats in the wild, that Big Cat Rescue funds:  http://bigcatrescue.org/insitu/

So when someone says Big Cat Rescue bashes other sanctuaries, ask them how they, or their favorite sanctuary, actually helped others and see how it compares.

Lies

Lies

Why Animal Exploiters Attack Big Cat Rescue Online

Big Cat Rescue is the largest sanctuary devoted exclusively to big cats that is accredited by GFAS, the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries. BCR has been held out by GFAS as a model of excellent sanctuary management, both financially and operationally.  We have held seminars on our practices for other GFAS sanctuaries and for the sanctuary managers of one of the largest animal welfare organizations in the world.

Charity Navigator is the leading independent evaluating body for nonprofit organizations.  BCR has earned their highest 4-star rating for “sound fiscal management and commitment to accountability and transparency” every year since we were first evaluated by them in 2010. Per their rating letter “Only 7% of the charities we rate have received at least 4 consecutive 4-star evaluations. indicating that Big Cat Rescue outperforms most other charities in America.”

The Independent Charities of America has certified Big Cat Rescue as one of the Best in America Charities every year since 2008.

GreatNonprofits, the leading provider of user reviews for nonprofit organizations, has named Big Cat Rescue has named Big Cat Rescue as one of its “Top-Rated Charities” every year since the beginning of its ratings in 2010. Those who tour BCR give the experience very high ratings on TripAdvisor, Yelp and other social media rating sites. We have at this writing over 1.5 million Facebook followers and our BigCatTV.com YouTube videos have received over 100 million views.

 

So, why when you Google Big Cat Rescue do you see some pages devoted totally to trashing us and when articles appear that we comment on do you see a few people commenting repeatedly trying to get you to go to those sites?

If our mission was simply to care for the animals we take in those pages would not exist.  But our two part mission is much broader. Our first duty is to give the best home we can to the roughly 100 animals we can provide a home for at the sanctuary. But the second part of our mission, to which we devote enormous resources, is to impact the lives of thousands of animals by working to end the widespread mistreatment of big cats in captivity. We do that by taking on the bad guys who are causing these animals misery.  We do it in the following ways:

  • Howard-Carole-Baskin-DC-2013-Capitol-stepsAdvocating for stronger regulations. For instance, we have actively worked with a number of the major animal welfare organizations to submit to USDA a 70+ page petition documenting why cub petting is abusive and why USDA should change its rules to forbid it as part of USDA’s mandate under the Animal Welfare Act to create rules to insure humane treatment of animals.
  • Advocating for laws banning private ownership of big cats in roadside zoos and as pets. We have testified at hearings and organized grass roots campaigns to support state bans. But most of our effort has gone into being one of the leading entities urging Congress to pass the Big Cat Public Safety Act that would phase out ownership by roadside zoos and big cats in back yards as pets. Federal bills typically take a number of sessions of Congress to pass, building support momentum over a period of years.  At the end of the 2012 session the bill had 60 cosponsors in the House of Representatives.  At the end of the 2014 session support had almost doubled to 119, over 25% of the legislators in the House. The bill was introduced in the 2016 session in September 2015. You can read about the bill HERE and help by easily contacting your legislators HERE.
  • When we detect situations we view as abusive like ripping tiny tiger cubs from their mothers at birth so ‘exhibitors” can make money forcing the often sleep deprived cubs to be petted or even swim with customers, or other traveling displays or circus style acts using big cats, we ask supporters to email and call the venues that allow these displays to show the venues that the majority of people view these as abusive. With the amazing help of our “Advocats” who take the time to make these calls and send these emails, we have gotten the owners of over 200 malls and fairs to no longer allow such displays. Major corporations like Citigroup and Porsche have agreed not to have such displays at corporate events after we educated them about the evils of these displays.
  • We have sued in federal court what we view as one of the most notorious tiger cub exploiters in the world, won a $1mm judgment, and are currently pursuing him to collect what we can.
  • Our Founder and staff are regularly interviewed as experts for news stories on issues related to big cats in captivity and we proactively comment online, sometimes positively and sometimes correcting articles that fail to accurately portray the plight of the big cats.

Being a leader in the fight to stop the abuse puts a target on the back of Big Cat Rescue and its Founder. The people who make money exhibiting big cats and selfishly wanting to own them as pets have no arguments that resonate with the public to justify their greed and selfishness.  The only defense they can come up with is to try to discredit Big Cat Rescue online by posting lies. The fact that so much time and energy is put into these websites trashing BCR is a testimony to the fact that we are being EFFECTIVE! If we were not, would they spend the time?

A large portion of the bashing brings up the early history of BCR, which we transparently provide right on our own website and in a large sign in the tour waiting area at the sanctuary. In the first few years in the early 90’s, before Carole came to know better, some animals were purchased and bred here. We now lead the fight to end that private breeding. You can click these links to read about the sanctuary’s history and evolution of thought.

One of the things our opponents love to rant about are cats who were born at Big Cat Rescue.  In addition to the links above, which explain why ANY cats were born here, it’s most important to note that as of 2016 there are 12 still alive.  They are a larger percentage of our population than ever before because they have always had excellent care, so they live longer. The youngest is 17 and the oldest are 21.  There are 2 bobcats, 2 caracals, 1 ocelot, 5 servals (all related), a cougar and a leopard.  That means we haven’t bred cats here in 17 years, and yet the very people who make the most noise about our past mistakes are still breeding lions, tigers and other big cats.

Opponents complain that we don’t talk a lot about them being born here, and the reason is that people see us as a model sanctuary.  If they don’t process our entire message they might think that if BCR ever bred wild cats, then it must be a good thing to do.  We want to be sure they don’t leave here or our website, thinking it’s OK to breed wild animals for life in cages; because it’s not.

BCR has been covered positively by the press over 1000 times (click here to see our media coverage). However on three occasions some years ago, in 2006-7 and 2011, the exploiters convinced reporters to print their lies. The latter time the report was based primarily on the exploiter we had sued earlier that year. Because the exploiters constantly drag out those stories and repost them online, we have gone point by point through the lies in them at the sites below:

Howard-Carole-Baskin-DC-2013-Monument2007 http://bigcatrescue.org/carole-baskin-takes-on-big-cat-fight-with-exotic-pet-owners/

2007 http://bigcatrescue.org/response-to-bay-news-9-story/

2011 http://bigcatrescue.org/channel-10-repeats-big-cat-abusers-lies/ (based largely on lies of the exploiter we sued that year)

Some of the handful of attackers are people who run road side zoos like:

Joe Schreibvogel Maldonado of GW Zoo in Oklahoma (the one we sued) – see TigerCubAbuse.com

Kathy Stearns of Dade City Wild Things in Tampa – see TigerCubAbuse2.com

Eddie Serio of Black Jaguar White Tiger in Mexico – see 911animalabuse.com/black-jaguar-white-tiger/ This is probably the most successful of the scamtuaries. Serio has duped millions of people into thinking he is saving animals when in fact he has a steady stream of cubs showing up in his closets, with no real explanation of where they keep coming from, where their parents are, or where they go when they aren’t fun to play with any more.  If he were really rescuing the cats and cubs, there would be videos of the rescue missions and he’d be asking you to help stop those breeders so more cubs aren’t born into cages.  He’d fix his cats so they wouldn’t breed and add to the problem, but he refuses to do so.

He’s sending entirely the wrong message by allowing contact with the animals because seeing images like that is what makes people pay to play with cubs, which is what drives almost all of the abuse. As for loving animals, one video shows this jerk kicking an animal just to torment the owner who entrusted the animal to him and now wishes she had never heard of him.  As one example of his nonsensical attacks on Big Cat Rescue, he has been distributing a screen shot from our 990 tax form that shows that the line item Animal Care and Educational Programs is 18% of our total expenses and claiming “only 18% goes to the animals” trying to imply we do not use donor funds properly.  Pretty funny from a guy who offers no transparency as to revenue or expenses and dupes people into supporting his exploitation.

The line item he points to only includes direct costs like food, veterinary care, maintaining the cages. Does Serio think running a sanctuary just means buying some food and building some cages and having a vet come by? Of course not – he knows better.  This item does not include any of the salaries that it takes to run the sanctuary, the insurance, the new cat hospital we built, utilities, housing for the interns we train to in both animal care and the issues, the gift shop that helps fund the sanctuary, the efforts we make to educate the public about the plight of the animals in captivity (e.g. that places like Black Jaguar are NOT sanctuaries and are sending the wrong message), the legal expense we have incurred suing one of the most notorious tiger cub exploiters, or the expenses associated with our effort to pass a federal bill that would end private breeding and possession of big cats to end the suffering that results from private ownership. Serio also points to family members on our staff. We are proud of the fact that we are a family of hard working people dedicated to the cats who work for very reasonable salaries.  We are so proud of the way we handle donor funds that we post all of our tax returns and outside audits of those returns here:  http://bigcatrescue.org/about/finances/

Charity Navigator is the organization most respected world wide for judging whether nonprofits are good stewards of donor funds. Big Cat Rescue has received their highest four star rating five years in a row, something only 6% of the thousands of nonprofits they rate achieves. Who is a better judge of governance and stewardship of donor funds, Charity Navigator or Eddie Serio? If Serio were rated by Charity Navigator, would he manage to get one star?

Another one of Serio’s lies is telling his duped followers that Big Cat Rescue pays people to write positive reviews of the sanctuary.  See http://bigcatrescue.org/pay-for-reviews/

The funny thing about Serio’s attacks is that when he sends his lies about BCR out to the millions of people he has duped and they actually take the time to learn what we do, many realize they have been duped and become supporters of ours. That is the silver line in having to deal with his nonsense and false attacks.

A few other attackers are individuals who may or may not be using their real names to post their attacks. They appear under some of the names below and spend enormous amounts of time building websites and blogs full of nonsense and posting online to try to direct people to them. These include:

 

Juan Garcia Big Cat Rescue Watch Tim Stark Joe Exotic Schreibvogel karencatsz
Barbara Hoffmann TopCatsRoar Jeff Lowe Kathy Stearns Alejandra Gonzalez
“Doc Antle” of T.I.G.E.R.S REXANO Lynn Culver naturelover12012@gmail.com

and others, or other aliases.

 

No doubt there are people who read the trash posted by those who wish to continue to exploit big cats and do not look further.  Thank you for coming to this page to learn the truth. Very simply, as noted above,the repeated posts by these attackers are a clear sign that our advocacy work to stop their exploitation is having an impact.  If it was not threatening to them, they would not take the time to falsely try to damage our reputation.

See what our cages are really like:

 

More Lies the Bad Guys Tell

People like Eddie Serio of Black Jaguar White Tiger tell their minions to post one star reviews about Big Cat Rescue even though they have never been here.  They, and others like them, tell their fans that it’s because Big Cat Rescue pays for good reviews.  Find out how they mislead you with an image that actually prooves they are lying here:  http://bigcatrescue.org/pay-for-reviews/

Cheetah Jaguar

Cheetah Jaguar

Why Big Cat Rescue Doesn’t Have Cheetah or Jaguars

The reason Big Cat Rescue doesn’t have cheetah is they are so inbred that they are virtually identical and don’t live very long, so they don’t end up in need of rescue. They are nearly impossible to breed in captivity so most zoos have to take them from the wild or they buy them from breeders who are not open to the public.

They don’t breed well in zoos because females are very fussy about picking a male, so the breeding farms put a female in a pen and then one by one try her with different males by using a tunnel system, like ours, but much much larger (measured in acres). They have to be in huge pens or they stress and die.  In the wild they patrol home territories of more than 800 square miles so no cage is really going to be suitable.  Any time you introduce adult cats you have a very real threat of them killing each other.

Their severe inbreeding is the result of all cheetah, not just the captive ones, making them all almost identical.

The current theory is that they became inbred when a “natural” disaster dropped their total world population down to less than seven individual cheetahs. They went through a “Genetic Bottleneck”, and their genetic diversity plummeted. They survived only through brother-to-sister or parent-to-child mating.  According to the enzymes, humans rate at about 70% identical. But laboratory rats and cheetahs rate at 97% identical.  Scientist think less than seven individuals, because it has been shown that if a population is reduced to seven individuals and then expands quickly, the offspring still retain about 95% of their genetic variability. But cheetahs have almost zero genetic variability – there’s hardly any difference between them.

If a species does not have much genetic diversity, it will not be able to adapt well to changes in their environment – such a climate change, or new bacteria or viruses. But if they do have a lot of genetic difference from one individual to the next, at least a few of them will be able to survive the changing times.

Because cheetah cost over $50,000 and mostly have to be brought in from the wild, which is a red tape process that takes nearly a year, and then they die young, they almost never end up being dumped into the pet trade. If someone says they have rescued a cheetah, demand to see the paperwork, because that almost never happens without a lot of money changing hands.  While much of the paperwork is marked as a “Donation” you can bet money changes hands when cheetah do.

jaguar on log by water

I haven’t found evidence to support my theories about why jaguar are so rare in captivity. Maybe you can help in the comments. Here’s my best guess:

Jaguar can have four cubs in a litter, but two is more common, so they don’t reproduce nearly as fast as lions and tigers. Jaguar have the superior intelligence of leopards but have far more powerful bites and much more bobcat like personality, so they kill people more often than leopards in captivity do.

Even a jaguar who is too old for breeding will fetch $7500.00 or more in the private sector, because it is so rare that jaguars are dumped from zoos into private hands.  We know that two old circus jaguars were sold to a private collector in Florida for at least that much because we had offered to take them when the circus lost its license.  The end buyer called us to say the circus told her we were bidding 7500. each and she wanted to work out a deal with us where we were not bidding against her.  The circus had lied to her, because we don’t buy animals to rescue them (since the 90s) and we had not offered any money for the cats.  That call from the end buyer did give us a glimpse into how much they are traded for though and the fact that some places claim to rescue rare cats, but are really just buying them.

We know from our work in situ with native tribes that zoos pay people to poach cheetah, jaguars and other rare cats from the wild. The zoo’s PR story will always be that it was a “nuisance” animal that was going to be culled so they rescued it, but that’s almost never the truth when it comes to any exotic cat species.

Local people agree to back up the lie, because that’s how they keep the constant flow of money coming in for their poaching, but if you work amongst them long enough, they will tell you that they are being paid to go find animals for zoo displays. Because the import process takes a long time to get past USFWS rules, the animals languish in tiny, barren cages, and often die and have to be replaced before the day of flight to the U.S.  The only way for them to obtain the valuable cubs is usually to kill their mothers.

Wild cats belong in the wild, so please don’t pay to go see them in cages.  Help us end the private possession of big cats at BigCatAct.com

JoJo

JoJo

JoJo

Male DOB 1/1/03
Rescued 9/1/13
Caravel (Caracal / Serval Hybrid)

JoJo-Caravel_4628570305914395538_n

 

 

Meet Jo Jo the Caracal Serval Hybrid

 

JoJo the Caracal / Serval Hybrid

hear big cats

I first met JoJo the Caracal / Serval hybrid at the South Florida Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in 2005 after a hurricane had taken down the perimeter fencing and dumped piles of deadfall on the cages.

JoJo hybrid 2012 Big Hiss

The owner, Dirk Neugebohm, had ended up in the hospital with a heart attack from trying to clean the mess up by himself.

 

He wrote from what he thought was his deathbed back then to anyone and everyone he could think of asking for help; and asking for help was not something that came easily to this hard working German.

Bird Caged Cats

What we found, when Howard and I visited, was a man who was way in over his head.  Donations were almost non existent, the cages were old, dilapidated, small and concrete floored.  The freezer had been damaged and he had lost his food supply, so we sent food and volunteers to help him clean up and rebuild.

The tiger back then was Sinbad, who lived in what is commonly used for housing parrots.  An oval corn crib cage with a metal roof.  Sinbad died recently after a snake bite, leaving Krishna, pictured, as the only remaining tiger.

Krishna Tiger

 

We had a donor and a sanctuary (Safe Haven in NV) that were willing to take Krishna, but we were told that the Florida Wildlife Commission had found someone less than 6 miles away to take him.

Dirk managed to keep his sanctuary afloat, if just barely, for the next 8 years, but a couple days ago one of his volunteers, Vickie Saez, who we had been helping for the past couple of years with infrastructure and social networking, contacted us to say that Dirk was dying of brain cancer in the hospital and that she had convinced him to let the animals go to other homes.   She said the Florida Wildlife Commission had arranged for most of the homes, but that Dirk was very happy that we could take JoJo.  Our sweet Caracal, Rose, had died July 31st and her cage was empty.

We were told that all of the other cats had new homes waiting, except for Nola the cougar, but she was very ill.  We offered to pay a vet to do blood work on her to make sure that she was not contagious.  We were concerned because she had a history of some very contagious diseases, which had left her severely debilitated.  What concerned us was that her caretaker said she looked bloated.

A vet had arrived to help with the transfer of two leopards to a place in Jupiter.  He sedated Nola to see what was wrong.

We are told that he palpitated three melon sized tumors in her abdomen and that with every touch of her belly she exuded foamy blood from her nose and anus.  He was sure that there was no hope for her and humanely euthanized her.

Nola cougar 2011

This photo was Nola back in 2011.  While we were sad that we would not be able to give Nola a new home here at Big Cat Rescue we are glad that she is not suffering any more.

 

JoJo at Big Cat Rescue

 

JoJo has arrived at Big Cat Rescue and settled in nicely.  It is quite possibly his first time to walk on the soft earth.

JoJo-at-Big-Cat-Rescue1

His cage has been a small (maybe 60 square feet) of concrete and chain link for at least 8 years and probably longer.  He is thought to be about 10 years old.  Sometimes breeders hybridize exotic cats because there are no laws on the books that regulate them, but in Florida, the inspectors say, “If it looks like a duck and walks like a duck; it’s a duck.”

JoJo-at-Big-Cat-Rescue2

JoJo now has 1,200 square feet of earth, bushes, trees and grass.

JoJo hybrid Grass Hide

He really likes the grass.  Are you hearing the Beetles lyric, “JoJo left his home in Homestead-Miami looking for some Florida grass?”

JoJo hybrid GrassClose Up

His diet has only been chicken necks for as far back as anyone can remember.  I think he is really going to like the menu at Big Cat Rescue.  You can help make rescues like this possible and help feed all of the cats at:  http://big-cat-rescue.myshopify.com/collections/sponsor-a-cat

 See More About JoJo:

JoJo the Caravel is up on his platform in this Wildcat Walkabout Video on May 1, 2014 – http://bigcatrescue.org/now-big-cat-rescue-may-2-2014/

Get the Meet JoJo iBook in iTunes

Meet another Caravel at the Wildcat Sanctuary

 

2016 July

 

 

 

Spay N Play

Spay N Play

Spay N Play

 

Spay and Play Flier that you can share in your animal shelter, rescue booth or veterinary clinic.  Download Front and Back.

 

In an ongoing effort to promote responsibility and to stop suffering, Big Cat Rescue is pleased to present our international Spay and Play program.  Bring us an original receipt, from your vet, showing that you spayed or neutered a pet, or a receipt from an animal shelter showing that you adopted a spayed or neutered pet, within the past year,  and get a FREE PASS for our day tour.  That is a $36.00 value!  If you are the kind of person who cares enough to protect your pet, or feral cats, from over population and all the horrors that go with it, then you are the kind of people that we want to meet.  See Day Tours for times and tell the Ticket agent you have a Free Pass to redeem.  So fix a pet and bring us proof (the receipt, not the cat) and we will give you a tour that you will be talking about for years.

Think you want to have just one litter first?  Think again:

From just allowing one litter of four, you are responsible for a minimum of 52 more cats in just 14 months!   There is no safe place for all these cats to go.  Tens of thousands are killed every year.  Be a part of the solution, not the problem.

Spay or Neuter your pet, and then come “Play” with some of our big cats.

If you are a Veterinarian, a shelter employee or a pet rescue organization you can print out the posters below that lets your clients know that their receipt for spaying or neutering OR adopting a pet that was spayed or neutered gets them in to see our big cats for free. The receipt should be dated within the last year. That is all they have to bring.

The No More Homeless Pets coalition is a movement that is sweeping the nation.  In almost every place in the country you can find rescue groups working together now to end euthanasia of healthy dogs and cats in shelters by promoting low cost and free spaying and neutering projects.  Visit No More Homeless Pets of Hillsborough County to see if you qualify for free or low cost altering of your pet. If you are not a resident of Hillsborough County, FL then try asking your local Animal Control if they have a low income voucher program or if they can recommend a low cost clinic.

 

Low Cost Spay & Neuter for Those Qualified

 

The No More Homeless Pets coalition is a movement that is sweeping the nation.  In almost every place in the country you can find rescue groups working together now to end the killing of healthy dogs and cats in shelters by promoting low cost and free spaying and neutering projects.

Visit Hillsborough County Animal Services to see if you qualify for low cost altering of your pet. If you are not a resident of Hillsborough County, FL then try asking your local Animal Control if they have a low income voucher program or if they can recommend a low cost clinic.

Find out your Animal Shelter’s policies and ask if they are involved with No More Homeless Pets in an attempt to end the killing of healthy dogs and cats.

 

“Come quick, come quick,” their mother said,
“The time is getting near.”
She feels that when the kittens come,
The children should be here.

She told them that a big orange Tom
Took “Kitty” as his wife.
“It’s wonderful, a gift from God,
The miracle of life.”

At half a year young “Kitty”
Feels too painful and too scared
To appreciate six miracles,
Blind-eyed and yellow haired.

But she knows these lives depend on her
And nature tells her how.
And as she cleans them, children ask,
“Mom, can we go now?”

But now and then for six more weeks
The children visit her to play
With six new magic toys
Made of life and fur.

The six weeks pass, the newness gone,
And new homes yet unfound,
Mom bundles up six miracles
And takes them to the pound.

Where lovingly, with gentle hands,
And no tears left to cry,
The shelter workers kiss them once,
and take them off to die.

And “Momma Kitty” now she’s called
Mourns her loss and then,
She’s put outside, and of course,
She’s pregnant once again.

Dad tells “Kitty,” “STOP THIS NOW,
Or you wont live here long!
But deep inside of Momma Cat,
This time something’s wrong.

Too young, too small, too often bred,
Now nature’s gone awry,
Momma Kitty feels it too,
And she crawls off to die.

She too is freed from this cruel world,
And from her time of strife.
How harsh the truth, how high the price,
This “Miracle of Life?”

–By Barry Taylor, DVM