This leopard demonstrates, better than most, the fact that you may be able to take the animal out of the wild but you will never take the wild out of the animal. Sundari will watch very closely as groups of people walk through the sanctuary. She immediately sizes up “the herd” from a distance and determines who is the weakest, the youngest or the most infirm. That is the person who gets her utmost attention. She’s even been seen climbing to the top of her enclosure just to get a closer look at whomever she has singled out. It is easy to explain the concept of “survival of the fittest” with Sundari’s enthusiastic demonstrations. Two of our senior volunteers love the way Sundari will roll over on her back showing everyone just how beautiful she is in hopes of finding a “boy” leopard – or at least someone who wants to volunteer to be a boy leopard.
“Sunny” has so many places she loves to lounge in her cat-a-tat. You’ll find her literally hanging from her tree sound asleep or draped across her concrete bench with all four legs dangling over the side or on top of her mountain den or just upside down in the middle of her cat-a-tat with her belly proudly in view. She’s very personable and always interested in anyone who comes by to visit. With this personality, she’s earned her nickname.
Sundari was born here back before we learned that no privately held exotic cats serve any sort of conservation purpose. Back then, in the pre-Internet era of the 90’s, the only people we could turn to for advice were breeders and dealers who lied to us about the necessity of breeding exotic cats to save them. As soon as we learned better we stopped breeding and began campaigning to end the abuse of breeding wild cats for life in cages.
Jade arrived at Big Cat Rescue with her sister, Armani. Jade is definitely the more mischievous one of the two. Like all leopards, she loves to jump up in the branches of the tree that is in her cat-a-tat. Most people have a very hard time telling the two sisters apart, they look so much alike. But, if you look closely, you can tell Jade from Armani by the V-shaped row of spots on her forehead that look like a tiara.
These two are so beautiful that some of the volunteers refer to them as the “Hilton Sisters.” Could it be because they just don’t take a bad picture? Or, could it be that we just love to spoil them so much?
DOB 6/17/97 Armani arrived at Big Cat Rescue with her sister, Jade. Armani, being the gorgeous leopard that she is, has done commercials for Venus Swimwear and has also appeared in a fashion photo for Glamour Magazine and for People Magazine.
Armani knows that to change a man you must change his perception of himself. There was a time when we thought we were reaching more people by taking her out in public. We perceived our actions as being educational because we spoke about the plight of the cats. Armani showed us that our perception of our role, and hers were very wrong. We no longer take our cats out in public or out on leashes for any purpose.
No matter what we say about these animals not making good pets, if we make them look like pets, people will want to own them as pets. The photo at right is of Armani in her old cage before the laws changed requiring a roof.
Sabre was 3 years old when he arrived at Big Cat Rescue on 7/20/95. Though he was only supposed to be here temporarily, his former owner moved and left no forwarding address.
This could have been another sad ending as most are in the exotic pet world. Luckily, we had taken Sabre in and he will have a home here for life. He is very playful and fun loving and always has a mischievous look on his face. He loves to act very silly, running about his cat-a-tat and jumping on top of his mountain den.
Sabre, like many of our cats, has been relocated to new cat-a-tats a few times. The change of scenery and new neighbors to interact with provide another form of enrichment for our big cats. Sabre has enjoyed the time he has spent among other cougars, tigers, leopards and bobcats. The only thing Sabre probably hasn’t enjoyed is his recent neutering. But now he is back to his old energetic self loving his new location.
Sabre the Black Leopard Tumor Removal
Sabre the black leopard is 22 years old, which is about 10 years longer than most leopards live, but a tumor has begun to grow under his chin and could make it hard for him to swallow, so the difficult decision is made to remove the mass surgically. The surgery could kill him, but the mass could too. This is graphic surgery video so don’t watch if you have a weak constitution.
Since he is one of the first black leopards you see at the sanctuary, Jumanji is used to quite a bit of attention. Most days, he can be found in the shadiest part of his cat-a-tat lounging on his fern-covered tree log. It is very easy to see how well black leopards camouflage themselves in the jungle since most people walk right by without noticing him there. People magazine certainly noticed Jumanji though. His photo was featured in an article written about Big Cat Rescue.
Jumanji is also known as quite the superstar achiever in our Operant Conditioning Program. He learns very quickly and always wants to please, especially when treats are involved. If the keeper is not quick enough with the reward, Jumanji will offer other behaviors to see if maybe the keeper wants something else. He makes it easy to capture and reward other behaviors, which he will then subsequently remember. The adage that leopards have the longest memories truly applies to Jumanji.
Jumanji was born here back before we learned that no privately held exotic cats serve any sort of conservation purpose. Back then, in the pre-Internet era of the 90’s, the only people we could turn to for advice were breeders and dealers who lied to us about the necessity of breeding exotic cats to save them. As soon as we learned better we stopped breeding and began campaigning to end the abuse of breeding wild cats for life in cages.
On 2/3/09 Panther International pledged to donate $20,000 to Jumanji’s life time care.
February 15, 2016 – Jumanji is sedated for treatment. http://bigcatrescue.org/jumanji-leopard-and-bongo-serval-surgeries/ Jumanji had dental surgery, as well as had the mass on his forehead removed. The mass was sent to lab for testing. It appears as though Jumanji got a stick stuck across the roof of his mouth causing two of his molars to go bad as well as neighboring molars. So now he does not have any upper molars and cannot chew. He will be on a soft food diet forever. His food must be cut up in pieces small enough to just swallow. He will recover in the concrete hospital cage for five days before returning to his enclosure. This will help keep his stitches clean. Also found during his exam was significant spondylosis, arthritis, in his spine. He will be on pain medications for the next week to see how it helps.
This is a compilation of videos between June 30 and August 8 2015 at Big Cat Rescue.It includes freshening up dens, a wedding staffed by volunteers, Kali Tiger, Sabre Leopard, Anasazi Bobcat, Cameron and Zabu the Lion and White Tiger, Little Feather Bobcat in slo-mo, Reise Cougar talking, JoJo the CaraVel, Joseph Lion ending his vacation, Jumanji Leopard getting a shot, Foster Kittens and ends with Amanda Tiger calling for her brothers.