AdvoCat 2016 04b

AdvoCat 2016 04b

There has been so much happening for the cats that we had to break the monthly AdvoCat Newsletter in two.  This is Part B.  Here was Part A:

Welcome Hoover Tiger

Hoover was rescued from the Peruvian circus by Animal Defenders International when they secured a ban on using wild animals in circus acts. Watch his journey to Big Cat Rescue.  Learn more here: and check out tees and totes to support him at:


Mother’s Day

Nav_HolidayMothersDayMother’s Day is May 8, 2016 and we have lots of gifts that will show her you care and that you know she loves cats.  Check shipping times to be sure your gift will arrive in time or check out downloads that you can print on demand.  See all the great gift selections at:

Thor Bobcat Update

On Sunday Thor will be returned to his rightful place in the wild.  Be sure that you are a fan of ours on and that you have your settings to include us first in the posts you see, so that you don’t miss the LIVE broadcast of his release.  Meanwhile, you can read Thor’s miraculous story here: and you can help fund bobcat rescue, rehab and release by purchasing Thor themed tees, totes, and more here:

Teisha Tiger Needs MRI

After much debate we are going to take Teisha in for an MRI on Monday.  We have been worried that the trip might kill her, but she’s just not improving enough for us to believe that she’s comfortable, so we are going to have the MRI done and see if there is any surgery that might restore her ability to walk better.  Updates will be at

Boston Marathon Big Cat Style

Everyone at the sanctuary would like to extend ROARING Big Cat kudos to Advocat’s Miki Y. and her running partner Yung Hae C. in recognition of their amazing accomplishment in having run and successfully completed the Boston Marathon in support of the magnificent creatures that call Big Cat Rescue home!  Read more:


Action Alert Jungle Habitat Zoo

Jungle Habitat Zoo, a traveling exhibitor that exploits a variety of exotic animals including big cats, is joining forces with the notorious owner of Nosey the elephant to operate a permanent roadside wild animal petting zoo in Kissimmee, Florida.  Find out more about this animal exploitation: and an easy way to stop it:

Give Day Tampa Bay is May 3


On May 3 the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay will hold its third annual Give Day contest where nonprofits compete to see who can have the most donors and donations that day. There are also prizes for the most donations in a particular hour of the day.

Thanks to so many of our supporters who participated, last year Big Cat Rescue won $30,000, more than any other nonprofit!  Of that $30,000, $10,000 was a prize for the most donations to an animal nonprofit sponsored by Caspers Company pictured here presenting their check.

Helping us win this prize money to support the cats is a great way to leverage your donation dollar.

On May 3 donations are accepted online by credit card for the contest.  The minimum donation is $25.

If you prefer to donate by check, the check is still made out to Big Cat Rescue but must be dated May 3 and have “Give Day” in the memo section.  We need to submit it the day before Give Day, i.e. on Monday, May 2, so need to have it in hand, or at least a scanned copy of it, by that day.  If you mail checks, please send them to:

Howard Baskin
Big Cat Rescue
12802 Easy Street
Tampa, FL 33625-3702

If you are contemplating a donation this year, Give Day is a great time to do it. Please mark May 3, 2016 on your calendar, or sign up here and we will remind you, and help us win again this year!

The Quarterly Big Cat Times

Our printed, quarterly magazine costs us about 43 cents to print and mail, per copy, so we can’t mail it to everyone in our database.  You can download the digital version here though:


2016 Animal Lover Dream Vacation Winner

Every year we pull from the hat one of our supporters who has signed up for the Animal Lover’s Dream Vacation.  This year’s winner was Mia Voss and she’s bringing her friend Courtney Smith Kramer, since the vacation is for two people.  This could turn out to be as big a deal for our cats as it is for the winners, as they have a huge audience who will be following their adventures here.  Watch for a lot of Snap Chatting, Live Facebook Feeds, Twitter posts and more while they are here.  Find out more here:


Apple NewsBig Cat Rescue IS the News

When Apple came out with their own news app, Big Cat Rescue was one of the first to provide a feed of all our new posts.

More great wins to announce since the last AdvoCat Newsletter:

4/21/16  The N.H. Fish and Game Department on Wednesday withdrew its proposal to re-establish a bobcat hunting season. In a 9-1 vote at the Statehouse on April 1, the legislative committee objected on the grounds that a bobcat season would violate the federal endangered species act and that the proposal was not in the financial best interest of the public.  The money Fish and Game would have made from selling all 50 bobcat permits in its proposal totaled $5,000, while the cost to implement the hunting season was estimated to be between $15,000 and $20,000 per year.

Geoffrey Jones, chairman of the Stoddard Conservation Commission, said following the bobcat season proposal was an eye-opening experience for him in terms of how Fish and Game operates.  “As we’ve all found out, people are pretty upset, and they’re not only upset about opening a season on a species that’s still in recovery, but I think people are upset about the process,” he said.  Jones said he didn’t think the Fish and Game commission ever listened to people’s concerns.

Fish and Game received approximately 6,000 comments, with just about 250 in favor of the season, but voted to hunt bobcats anyway.  Changes need to be made in how the department runs to represent the interests of all people, according to Jones. “We’re so relieved that New Hampshire’s bobcats and lynx are safe from hunters and trappers,” Collette Adkins, a Center for Biological Diversity attorney and biologist, said. “At public expense, these bobcat seasons would have benefited only the few who’d like to kill these beautiful animals for sport or ship their pelts overseas to China for profit. The state heard loud and clear that people value these cats in the wild and don’t want to see them cruelly trapped or shot.

4/20/16 Florida is still working on changing their rules, but sent this letter to licensees:

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has determined that newborn and infant nondomestic cats four weeks (28 days) of age or younger (neonate or neonatal) have special handling and husbandry needs. Please see the attached letter and Tech Note from APHIS regarding these requirements.  Any question you have in regards to these new guidelines may be addressed to USDA’s office in Raleigh, North Carolina at 919-855-7100, or in Fort Collins, Colorado at 970-494-7478.

USDA Tech Note- Neonatal Nondomestic Felines.pdf

USDA Letter – Neaonatal Nondomestic Felines.pdf

4/20/16  After the successful launch of The Jungle Book, Disney points to their policy of not using captive wild animals for their movies.  “We’re not allowed to actually shoot exotic animals that are kept in captivity for movies. You can do cats and dogs, but you can’t do anything like a tiger or an elephant … you can never get them in a trained environment,” Rob Legato, a veteran visual effects artist who worked on Jungle Book, told a crowd at a panel during the National Association of Broadcast conference.  The aforementioned policy outlines that Disney productions are, in general, not allowed to use exotic live animals outside of a zoo, sanctuary habitat or natural environment. It applies pretty much across the board — television or film productions, photo shoots, any media broadcast, special events — with only occasional exceptions, providing the said animal is not an ape or other large primate.


4/17/16 Jim Kellogg resigns from the California Department of Fish & Wildlife, protesting the appointment of non hunters to the commission, and stated “I’m not willing to accept the changing world,” he said. “The animal rights people who don’t favor hunting and fishing have more horsepower than they did before.”  The shift away from having a board that is only comprised of hunters, when less than 1% of CA’s population are hunters, started under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who appointed commissioners who supported efforts to protect marine life off the California coast.

4/16/16  The California Fish and Game Commission denied a proposal by the California Trappers Association to repeal the bobcat trapping ban that was put in place last year. The commissioners* stayed firm in their decision to support the hard-fought bobcat trapping ban.


Earth Day News

Hope you’re well! One Green Planet launched the Food Monster App, which marks the ever-growing trend toward planet-friendly plant-based food!  The Food Monster App hit the Apple App Store on Earth Day, April 22, 2016.

More than ever, people are waking up to the fact that animal agriculture is at the heart of our current environmental crisis. This destructive industry is not only responsible for the more greenhouse gas emissions than the entire transportation sector, but it uses 23 percent of the world’s freshwater resources and covers over 50 percent of arable land.

Not to mention, is also the leading driver of deforestation and habitat loss which has pushed countless endangered species on to the brink of extinction.

While this might sound daunting, by choosing plant-based foods, instead, people have the incredible ability to halve their carbon footprints and giving species a fighting chance – and with the help of the Food Monster App, it doesn’t mean giving anything up.

The Food Monster App features a whopping 5,000+ vegan recipes with 500+ search options and 10+ new recipes added daily.  We’re talking hearty burgers, cheesecakes, decadent desserts, and more! Featuring incredible multi-image, 3D-touch enabled HD photos, vegan never looked this good!

Get it here:


More Than One Way to Go Green

Big Cat Rescue is proud to choose clean energy with Arcadia Power. We encourage everyone to support an environmentally friendly lifestyle by doing the same at home, and Arcadia Power is even offering all Big Cat Rescue supporters a $20 account credit plus a donation to Big Cat Rescue‘s efforts! It’s so easy to sign up. It only takes a couple minutes from start to finish, and you don’t have to switch utilities or install anything. All you have to do is link up your utility account to their clean energy platform, and they purchase clean energy on your behalf from the same renewable energy markets Google, Whole Foods, and other progressive companies have had access to for years. In 3 minutes your home or apartment’s electricity usage can be covered by 100% clean, renewable energy. Check it out here:

Earth Day 2016

Earth Day 2016

Fires were sweeping across Florida in the direction of the sanctuary in 1999 due to drought conditions.

At that time the fire department warned us that we were on our own because we were surrounded by woods, not human habitation, and they wouldn’t be bringing their fire trucks down the pot hole ridden, quarter mile of bad road, called Easy Street that led to our gate.  We began installing sprinkler systems on the cats’ cages and had firehoses of our own at the ready to use the dwindling lake water to save our cats.  I felt helpless and did the only thing I could, from a personal perspective.

I quit eating red meat, and so did my teen age daughter.

At least I could save some water by not eating meat because it takes about 9 gallons of water to raise one pound of beef.  That proved to be pretty difficult in the 90s as there weren’t many choices in the grocery stores and almost none in restaurants.  Now that’s different and there are lots of great vegetarian and vegan choices.

Our friends at One Green Planet really made it easy today with their fantastic new app called Food Monster.  Get it here:

Share these great images with a link to the app:

Food Monster App Deforestation

Food Monster App Animals

And check out all of these interesting facts about how your food choices can make or break the planet:

Jamie and I still maintain a primarily plant based diet and are stronger and healthier than most of our peers.  I hope you will check out the app and see if there are some meals that you could replace with some healthier, tastier, planet friendlier options. – Carole Baskin

When Tigers Kill Keepers

When Tigers Kill Keepers

There are only 2 Reasons Why Zoo Keepers Are Killed by Tigers

  1.  There has been a failure in the safety measures to keep tigers and zoo keepers apart, or
  2. The zoo keeper doesn’t understand their relationship with tigers or any other big cat.


There is a lot that can go wrong, from failing latches, to not having a clear line of sight between the cat and keeper to the mishaps that are caused by a keeper purposely entering the cats’ space. Even if the cats are not killed, for doing what comes naturally, they are doomed to life in prison.

Night Houses seem to often be part of the human / big cat mauling or killing scenario and maybe it is because it is such a cruel practice. Cats are most active at night, but for liability reasons are shut in prison-like, windowless, cells by zoos when they are closed. The cats hate it, so they have to withhold food to force them in at night.

Big Cat Rescue does not lock cats up at night and thanks to our mild climate in Florida, does not utilize any sort of indoor housing for the big cats. Because there are no solid walls or doors, the keepers at Big Cat Rescue can always see where the cat is before approaching the enclosure. Caregivers at the sanctuary do not enter the enclosures of any big cat, unless that cat is safely locked into another portion of the cage by the CEO or President and the Operations Manager.

Exotic cats are spectacularly intelligent creatures and have years to plot their escape or revenge.

The second reason keepers are killed by big cats is that they think they are “tiger whisperers” or they think they have some super natural bond with apex predators that makes them special.  Anyone who espouses such nonsense shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near a captive big cat, because they clearly do not understand exotic cats.  It is just a matter of time before it ends in tragedy.

white tiger abuseCats in cages may be solicitous of their owners or keepers, but that’s because they have to beg for everything. It’s sad to see it, when you think about how majestic these animals are meant to be.  Humans mistake their temporary power, ensured by the strength of the cage, for having a bond or relationship with the big cat.  Tigers have their own agenda and it doesn’t include pleasing people.  Some may not be overtly nasty about it, but given a choice will escape and never look back.

At Big Cat Rescue our caregivers are trained to feed and clean small cats, like bobcats, servals, caracals and lynx for 6 months before they can graduate to cougars.  We are a NO TOUCH facility; no, not even their fingertips, may touch the cats!  If they prove themselves trustworthy around the smaller cats, they can graduate to cougar keeping.  They are with us about two years before they are even allowed to be in the sections where lions, tigers and leopards are housed.  That two year process allows us ample time to weed out the delusional people who think they could get away with touching a big cat and live to tell about it.

More Resources on the Captive Big Cat Issues

Just like the better zoos are accredited by AZA, the better sanctuaries are accredited by GFAS.

These are the big cat standards for GFAS:

The state of Florida does not allow contact with big cats over 40 lbs., but may have some exemption for employees.


USDA has enforced actions against facilities that allowed public contact with big cat cubs over the age of 12 weeks, as they can take off a finger at that age and just recently announced they will cite facilities for pimping out cubs under the age of 4 weeks. AZA zoos don’t do that, but there are plenty of backyard breeders that do.

April 3, 2016 USDA cracks down on abuse of cubs under the age of four weeks. In response to a 2012 legal petition filed by The Humane Society of the United States, World Wildlife Fund, Detroit Zoological Society, International Fund for Animal Welfare, Born Free USA, Big Cat Rescue, Fund for Animals and Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries, theU.S. Department of Agriculture issued guidance making clear that exhibitors violate the Animal Welfare Act by allowing members of the public to handle or feed infant exotic cats like tigers, lions, cheetahs, jaguars or leopards. Read more.

April 5, 2016 USFWS announced that they are rescinding the generic tiger loophole. Big Cat Rescue has been pressuring the USFWS since at least 2007 to rescind this loophole and on 8/22/11 after a meeting with the USFWS the Generic Tiger issue was published to the Federal Register for public comment and got over 15,000 comments in support of our request to ban the breeding of non purebred tigers. Read more.

Big Cat Rescue has been pressuring the USDA since the 90’s and USFWS since at least 2007 to end cub handling and rescind the generic tiger loophole and on 8/22/11 after a meeting with the USFWS the Generic Tiger issue was published to the Federal Register for public comment and got over 15,000 comments in support of our request to ban the breeding of non purebred tigers. According to their Q&A it sounds like the USFWS may still rubber stamp activities that really don’t help tiger conservation, but it’s a step. USDA only banned the contact with cubs under four weeks, but that is a step too.

So What Can You Do to Stop the Abuse and the Killings and Maulings?

As long as big cats are privately owned and used as photo and ego props, the fantasy that they can be handled safely will prevail and accidents will continue to happen.

Regulations can’t work, because USDA and USFWS don’t have the resources nor apparently the will to enforce the weak rules they have, so that is why we need an all out ban on the private possession of big cats. You can help get that done at



Join Big Cat Rescue’s Carole Baskin and her cat experts from around the globe.


Playlist of Cat Chat Show videos

Find the Cat Chat Show in iTunes

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For Guests:  Instructions on what you will need to join the Google Hangout on Air


Cat Chat Show Directory


Cat Chat 79  Video Pet Doctor Bernadine Cruz Interviews Big Cat Rescue’s PR Director, Susan Bass

Cat Chat 78  Video Meet Bryna Donnelly of Animal Lifeline, Rescue Build and Greater Good on Cat Chat Show 78

Cat Chat 77  Video Find out what Big Cat Rescuer, Kathryn Quaas, is doing at the Born Free sanctuary in Ethiopia at the Ensessakotteh Wildlife Rescue, Conservation and Education Centre.

Cat Chat 76  Video Meet Patricia Tricorache from the Cheetah Conservation Fund. Join us to learn about the plight of the cheetah and what CCF is doing about it.

Cat Chat 75  Video Show Notes The Big Cat Coalition presents at a congressional briefing in Washington, DC about the need to pass HR 3546 The Big Cat Public Safety Act.

Cat Chat 74  Video  Show Notes  KJ talks with Carole Baskin about her experience as a keeper at Bill Meadows’ Tiger Safari and warns others to check out animal facilities before falling victim to abuse.  Caution:  Foul language and disturbing images.

Cat Chat 73  Video    Show Notes  Glenn & Dona Williams talk about how Cecil the lion changed their lives.

Cat Chat 72  Video    Show Notes  Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue interviews key members of the Tampa Cat Crusaders.

Cat Chat 71  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue, Antonio Franyuti, Founder of Animal Heroes, and Lourdes Lopes, Federal Deputy for the Green Party PVEM, entered into a Declaration that we would work together find and build sanctuaries to care for the big cats who have been banned from being used in public exhibition.

Cat Chat 70  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Meet long time volunteers, Matt and Jen Ruszczyk, in the 70th episode of The Cat Chat Show with Carole Baskin, at Big Cat Rescue.

Cat Chat 69  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Olga Bellon gets a crash course in big cat care at Big Cat Rescue to implement in the new big cat facility being built in Spain as part of AAP.

Cat Chat 68  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Meet David Enden and Kyle Taitt, two young men who are involved in awakening a generation.

Cat Chat 67  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Carole records a day in the life of the sanctuary via Google Glass and the iPhone 5s.

Cat Chat 66  Video  Podcast  Show Notes   Meet T.O. Lawrence, the new media producer at Big Cat Rescue and get a sneak peek into some of the great new concepts he has in store for you.

Cat Chat 65  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  A day in the life of Gale Ingham, the Operations Manager at Big Cat Rescue.

Cat Chat 64  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  D.W. Raleigh author of Shiloh’s True Nature published by Hobbes End Publishing.  Find out why we think cat lovers will love his new book.

Cat Chat 63  Video Podcast Show Notes  Meet Joshua Decker from Local Directive. Carole met the owner of Local Directive, Lisa Meier, at a Florida Lobby Day in 2009 and Lisa offered to take over the management of Big Cat Rescue’s Google AdWords grant.

Cat Chat 62  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  National Geographic photographer Steve Winter and Sharon Guynup recently produced Tigers Forever: Saving the World’s Most Endangered Big Cat a book (published by Nat Geo Books). They have been using the book as a platform to speak up for tigers because few people know that just 3,000 remain in the wild, nor are they aware of the threats that are pushing them ever-closer to the precipice.

Cat Chat 61  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Meet Carol Childs, founder of the National Humane Society and the Florida Humane Society.  See about 50 cats and kittens who are being spayed and neutered today and are ready for your loving arms. 

Cat Chat 60  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Margaret Gates, Founder of the Feline Nutrition site, says it should be a raw meat diet, like nature intended.  Join us for this hour long discussion about how a raw meat diet can help your cat live a longer, healthier life. 

Cat Chat 59  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Madi Hawkins, the Director of the Habersham County Animal Care & Control in Georgia, talks about how TNR is saving thousands of cats from being killed in her shelter.

Cat Chat 58  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Meet Jenny Schlueter, Development Director & Feral Friends TNR Program Manager for the Tree House Humane Society.

Cat Chat 57  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Want to be a pet detective, or need one to find your lost pet? Check out Kat Albrecht’s interview about her work with Missing Pet Partnership and get involved.

Cat Chat 56 Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Cat Chat 56 Merritt Clifton of Animals 24 – 7.

Cat Chat 55  Video  Podcast  Show Notes Clara Lee Arnold, from Hopkins Belize Humane Society talks about her work there and with the Belize Zoo.

Cat Chat 54  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Meet Shelly Thayer, Executive Director of the Cat Depot.

Cat Chat 53  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  How to Systematize Your Nonprofit Organization and Attract More Volunteers to Your Cause – Carole Baskin is interviewed by Owen McGab Enaohwo.

Cat Chat 52  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Lori Gagen is the Executive Director at Black Pine Animal Sanctuary and joins Carole Baskin for Cat Chat 52.

Cat Chat 51  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Gary Kaskel, author of the new book, Monsters and Miracles – Henry Bergh’s America, is our guest on Cat Chat 51.  Henry Bergh was the founder of the ASPCA.

Cat Chat 50  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Stanley F. Bronstein is an Attorney, CPA, Author & Certified Laws of Positioning® Coach. He interviewed Carole Baskin for a segment that he calls Interviews That Will Change Your Life.

Cat Chat 49  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Chris Poole, the Media Producer for Big Cat Rescue talks about how he came to work at Big Cat Rescue, how he taught himself the trade and shares some of his insights into producing captivating video.

Cat Chat 48  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Judy McGee co-founder of National Tiger Sanctuary talks with Carole Baskin about their efforts to end cub handling displays.

Cat Chat 47 Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Intern Karma Hurworth joins Carole Baskin on this episode of Cat Chat to talk about what inspired a 52 year old woman to give up everything, drive from Oregon to Florida, and commit to the grueling schedule of being an intern at the sanctuary.

Cat Chat 46 Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Karen Lynch, author of the spy thriller, Game of Lies and many children’s stories and books shares Finn McCool’s message that good things happen to those who do good.

Cat Chat 45  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Today is Carole Baskin using Google Glass to talk with volunteers in action who are taking care of the exotic cats.  It’s just like being there to see it through her “eyes.” Apologies on this one, as it isn’t rendering in iMovie and is truncated to the first 19 minutes.  Still trying to fix this.  #ThroughGlass

Cat Chat 44  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Tammy Thies, Founder and Executive Director of Wildcat Sanctuary is interviewed by Big Cat Rescue volunteer, Kathryn Quaas.

Cat Chat 43  Video  Podcast  Show Notes  Lisa Horsborough shares her experience from volunteering at a facility in South Africa that claimed to be raising white lions and golden lion cubs for release into Kruger National Park.

Cat Chat 42  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Barbara Frank, a 10 year veteran, and Master Keeper at Big Cat Rescue is Carole Baskin’s guest.

Cat Chat 41  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Kate McFall, the FL state director for HSUS and Carey Theil, Executive Director of GREY2K USA Worldwide presented at the Humane Society of Tampa Bay on how to get involved in the legislative process to help animals.

Cat Chat 40  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Sybelle Foxcroft, Founder and Director of Cee4Life,  joins us today from Melbourne Australia to talk about her work saving tigers.

Cat Chat 39  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Diane Gustafson shares her story about her love of animals and what she did when she encountered abuse at a big cat facility.

Cat Chat 38  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Carole Baskin talks about the International Tiger Coalition and Big Cat Coalition successes.

Cat Chat 37  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Julie Bindas author of Thy Kingdom Come discusses herbal remedies, shamanism and the differences in captive and wild cats

Cat Chat 36  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Jennifer Dietz, Esq. a pioneering Animal Law Attorney

Cat Chat 35  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Cindy Wines of Earth and Animal Wellness

Cat Chat 34  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Robin Greenwood, Pres. of Elmira’s Wildlife Sanctuary

Cat Chat 33  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Shayla Scott of Chimps Inc, talks about their Lynx

Cat Chat 32  Video     Podcast   Show Notes  Noelle Almrud, of Black Beauty Ranch

Cat Chat 31  Video     Audio   Show Notes  Justin Mikolaitis, Esq. chats with us about pet laws

Cat Chat 30  Video    Audio   Show Notes  Howard Baskin explains the big cat crisis in America

Cat Chat 29  Video    Audio   Show Notes  Carole Baskin talks w/ Interns and Staff at BCR

Cat Chat 28  Video    Audio   Show Notes  Patty Finch of the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries

Cat Chat 27  Video    Audio   Show Notes  Scott Giacoppo of Washington Humane Society

Cat Chat 26  Video    Audio   Show Notes  SkipAHolics:  Rebecca, Maria, Monica & Cecelia

Cat Chat 25  Video    Audio   Show Notes  Mitchel Kalmanson talks about insuring the wild, weird and wacky

Cat Chat 24  Video    Audio   Show Notes  Dr. Danya Linehan, DVM on Litterbox Issues

Cat Chat 23  Video    Audio    Show Notes  Lynda Sugasa, Founder and Executive Director of Safe Haven Rescue Zoo

Cat Chat 22  Video    Audio    Show Notes  Cougar & Bobcat Rescue

Cat Chat 21   Video    Audio    Show Notes  Chelsea Feeny

Cat Chat 20  Video    Audio    Show Notes  Dr. Danya Linehan, D.V.M.

Cat Chat 19   Lost Files             Show Notes  Jamie Veronica

Cat Chat 18   Lost Files             Show Notes  Honey Wayton

Cat Chat 17   Video    Audio    Show Notes  Gale Ingham

Cat Chat 16   Video    Audio    Show Notes  Carole Baskin

Cat Chat 15   Video    Audio    Show Notes  Bobbi Brink

Cat Chat 14   Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 13  Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 12   Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 11   Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 10   Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 9    Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 8    Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 7     Lost files

Cat Chat 6    Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 5    Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 4    Video    Audio    Show Notes  David and Carole

Cat Chat 3    Lost files

Cat Chat 2    Video    Audio    Show Notes  Sean Carnell

Cat Chat 1    Lost files

AdvoCat 2016 04

AdvoCat 2016 04

The Best Week for Big Cats in Decades!

This week has been epic for big cats, thanks to all of YOU who have roared out to protect wild cats and their cubs.

4/3/2016 USDA cracks down on abuse of cubs under the age of four weeks.  In response to a 2012 legal petition filed by The Humane Society of the United States, World Wildlife Fund, Detroit Zoological Society, International Fund for Animal Welfare, Born Free USA, Big Cat Rescue, Fund for Animals and Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries, the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued guidance making clear that exhibitors violate the Animal Welfare Act by allowing members of the public to handle or feed infant exotic cats like tigers, lions, cheetahs, jaguars or leopards.  Read more.

4/5/2016 USFWS announced that they are rescinding the generic tiger loophole. Big Cat Rescue has been pressuring the USFWS since at least 2007 to rescind this loophole and on 8/22/11 after a meeting with the USFWS the Generic Tiger issue was published to the Federal Register for public comment and got over 15,000 comments in support of our request to ban the breeding of non purebred tigers.  Read more.

Big Cat Rescue has been pressuring the USDA since the 90’s and USFWS since at least 2007 to end cub handling and rescind the generic tiger loophole and on 8/22/11 after a meeting with the USFWS the Generic Tiger issue was published to the Federal Register for public comment and got over 15,000 comments in support of our request to ban the breeding of non purebred tigers. According to their Q&A it sounds like the USFWS may still rubber stamp activities that really don’t help tiger conservation, but it’s a step.  USDA only banned the contact with cubs under four weeks, but that is a step too.

So What’s Next?

Regulations can’t work, because USDA and USFWS don’t have the resources nor apparently the will to enforce the weak rules they have, so that is why we need an all out ban on the private possession of big cats.  You can help get that done at


Don’t Forget Your Favorite Mom

Nav_HolidayMothersDayThese gifts have been hand selected by our online Gift Shop manager to bring you the best gifts for Mom, and in time for her special day if you order now. Shop for Mom and Save Big Cats Too!


To Celebrate Mother’s Day Will You Help Us “Mother” Our Foster Kittens?

Did you know that Big Cat Rescue fosters domestic kittens until they are old enough to be adopted? In the last 3 years our interns and volunteers have mothered literally hundreds of foster kittens! See some of the little cuties and find out more at


Big Cat Rescue’s In Situ Conservation Work 2016

dOnce a month, a volunteer or intern is selected for outstanding service to the cats.  Big Cat Rescue rewards them by making a $1,000 donation to conservation projects in their honor.  So far this year Big Cat Rescue has donated to the following projects to save wild cats in the wild.

Big Cat Rescue donated $5,000 to The Corbett Foundation, a charitable, non-profit and non-governmental organization solely committed to the conservation of wildlife. They work towards a harmonious coexistence between human beings and wildlife across some of the most important wildlife habitats in India, namely Corbett Tiger Reserve, Kanha and Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserves, Kaziranga Tiger Reserve and around the Greater Rann of Kutch.

Caracal Photos Elijah&RoseIn February 2016, BCR donated $2,000 to assist the Urban Caracal Project. The Cape Peninsula is a biodiversity hotspot that has lost almost all of its large mammals such as cape lions, leopards and brown hyenas. Caracals as a result may play a major role in maintaining the ecosystem as they are the largest remaining predator in the area.

In March 2016 BCR donated funds to assist the Black Footed Cat Working Group, with one of the longest running small cat projects that has been in process for over 23 years, conserving the Black Footed Cat population in South Africa. More than 60 cats have been caught and collared over 100 times and what is known today about the species has been found during this field study.

Big Cat Rescue donated $1,000 to the first-ever study on the ecology and behavior of the Sand Cat in Morocco.  Learn more about these projects at

Ultrasound Match

We are thrilled to announce a fantastic matching funds opportunity to help Big Cat Rescue purchase a state-of-the-art ultrasound machine so that we can continue to provide the best veterinary care possible.

While our x-ray machine is critical for examining bone structure it has limited capacity for evaluating organs. An ultrasound machine is more suited for examining soft tissue. Currently our vet team relies on a physical exam, blood work and x-rays to determine the cause of a cat’s illness.  If the cause is not readily apparent using these tools, they must perform an invasive exploratory surgery.

Ultrasound Zabu Tiger

It is critically important that the person operating the ultrasound machine be trained and have extensive experience reading sonograms. If we purchased a standard ultrasound machine, we would have to incur the logistical issues and cost of bringing in an expert technician each time we needed to use it. This is not practical because in many cases we would not know if we were going to need to do an ultrasound until after we take x-rays.  If we did need to do it, we would have to do it immediately while the cat was sedated and would not have time to arrange for a technician.

The specialized machine we need solves this problem in an ingenious way. It has a camera mounted to it and an Internet connection to a board certified technician who will guide our vet via camera to make sure they get the best possible sonogram images and will aid in correctly reading the images.

The specialized one we need for our cats costs $50,000. The great news is that the Reitzel Foundation has stepped up and pledged a dollar-for-dollar match up to $25,000! So your much needed and greatly appreciated donation toward our ultrasound machine for the cats will go twice as far! Thank you for continuing to support our cats and our sanctuary. This ultrasound machine will make a world of difference in the lives of our precious cats.

If you would like to contribute to the matching fund, please donate here.  Thanks!

Thor Update

Thor Eye ImprovementThor, the bobcat who was hit in the head by a car, and lived to tell about it, has been healing in the onsite cat hospital.  The last two items to check off his list are to be sure that the injured eye won’t be a hazard for him and to see him get back into hunting condition.  His last eye check by veterinary ophthalmologist, Tammy Miller, indicates that the eye is doing well, even if not visual and you can log in and watch him daily on the Bobcat Rehab webcam provided by at

Hamburger Mary’s Event

It was a gaudy night of fun and bingo last week that raised $1,100.00 for the cats!



The notorious Robert Engesser and his traveling roadside zoo Jungle Safari are RIGHT NOW exploiting a tiger cub by charging the public to pose for photos with the cub. Adult tigers as well as many other animals are in tiny cages in the parking lot of the Ozark Shopping Center in Ozark, Alabama. Plus, Dothan’s ABC news station WDHN News aired a “news” piece about the deplorable zoo and gushed about how wonderful it was to have wild animals in a parking lot!

Engesser claims the exhibit is an “educational zoo.” This shopping center is owned and operated by the City of Ozark under the auspices of the Ozark City Council. It’s time to let WDHN as well as the Mayor of Ozark and City Council members know that cub petting is not “educational” or “humane,” and that by supporting it, they’re supporting animal abuse and the wildlife trade.

Abuse Engessor Jungle SafariEmail Billy Blackwell Mayor of Ozark at and

Email the Ozark City Council members at

Email WDHN News Director Stephen Crews at

Post comments on WDNH News’ Facebook page here (but don’t be surprised if they remove your comments):


Have you always wanted a career in wild animal care or management?

Zoo College is modeled after the Keeper Training offered at Big Cat Rescue.  It is the only online, virtual training center, where you can test your skills against real life animal care challenges.  The lessons you will learn have been tested and improved over more than 20 years in dealing with some of the most dangerous and majestic carnivores on the planet.

Before now, the only way to get this extensive zookeeper training was to volunteer or intern at Big Cat Rescue, in Tampa, FL.  Minimum time requirements for onsite training range from four hours a week to 16 hours per week.  Due to the danger involved in caring for lions, tigers, ligers, leopards and other wild cats, it takes two years of training to achieve proficiency, so it would mean years of commitment for you to progress through that experience.

With Zoo College you can pace yourself and test your knowledge, using all of the same teaching guides, videos and methods, before making such a huge commitment of time or finances for a biology degree that won’t give you any real sense of what it means to care for wild animals in a zoo or sanctuary setting.

Because we are still in Beta and working out the bugs, we are offering the course for only $9 per month.  Check it out at Zoo College


Want a career in wild animal care? Check out


Zoo College Ad

Dreaming of a career with wild cats?  Check out

Mother Foster Kittens

Mother Foster Kittens

To Celebrate Mother’s Day,

Will You Help Us “Mother” Our Foster Kittens?

Did you know that Big Cat Rescue fosters domestic kittens until they are old enough to be adopted? In the last 3 years our interns and volunteers have mothered literally hundreds of foster kittens!


This includes mommy cats with babies, bottle feeder kittens without mommies, kittens under 2 lbs. (the legal weight to spay & neuter them), and feral kittens that need to be socialized. Big Cat Rescue’s amazing interns – who live on property and ADORE kittens!! – care for the kittens from the time they arrive to the time they are brought back to the Humane Society for adoption. That’s a lot of love, nurturing, care and socializing!

When the kittens are old enough to have their first vaccines and have been SNAP tested (for Feline Aids and Feline Leukemia), they can spend their days in our Kitten Cabana while the interns are working at the sanctuary. Volunteers who have taken our Kitten Playtime Class can go into the Kitten Cabana to play with and socialize them. Playing with kittens! Yippee. Friendly kittens have a much better chance of being adopted. WATCH OUR KITTENS LIVE DURING THE DAY in the Kitten Cabana at

Big Cat Rescue provides the kittens with food, formula, litter, crates, carriers, bottles, toys, cat trees, catnip, heating pads, scales, nebulizers, intern housing, Internet for webcams and emergency care. If YOU would like to help support our Foster Kitten Program and “mother” our tiny charges, DONATE HERE

Or we can always use these supplies for our kittens: Purina Kitten Chow, plain clay litter (no clumping), wet food, soft blankets, towels, toys, beds, heating pads and kitten nursing supplies. Easy to order from our Amazon Wishlist.


SPAY AND PLAY – One more really cool thing…we put our mouth where are paws are! If you 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, Big Cat Rescue will give you a FREE PASS for our Day Tour. That’s 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 person we want to meet!  See Day Tours for times and tell the Ticket agent you have a Free Pass to redeem.