Big Cat Rescue of Tampa, FL is excited to tell you about an opportunity that is sure to feed your beastly appetite for adventure. Our Big Cat Keeper Tour is the most exclusive behind the scenes experience you can find in the animal world that is respectful to the animals and safe for the guests. If you are an animal lover and want to see the inner workings of a real animal sanctuary, then this 2-hour experience is what you have been searching for.
No where else can you get this close, interact with such a wide variety of wild cats, and support a great cause at the same time.
The Keeper Tour includes:
- Enrichment: You’ll make toys and treats for the cats to stimulate an animals’ activity level and watch as keeper hands out what you’ve made. Observe the animals’ reactions as they investigate their enrichment that you helped create for them.
- Operant conditioning: You’ll witness a training session between the cats & keepers. During this activity you will accompany our keepers who will teach critical behaviors to one of our feline residents, such as go into lock out, stand up so we can observe the paws and underside, and much more!
- History: You’ll learn the history behind our furry friends and how they came to call Big Cat Rescue home. In addition, you’ll also hear the story of why Big Cat Rescue was founded, as you take a guided mini tour of the 55 acre sanctuary.
On your exploration you will see many of our more than 100 exotic cats, including more than a dozen different species and sub species of exotic cats! Learn about where these great cats come from in the wild and what you can do to help their plight. You will join an exclusive group of adventure seekers and a few of our highly trained staff for an orientation that will prepare you for an afternoon of Behind the Scenes excitement!
Each Behind the Big Cat Scenes Keeper Tour is unique and different, so you never know fully what to expect, besides a roaring good time!
The tour is available on Saturdays and Sundays from 2pm – 4pm. Space for this program is extremely limited prepayment is required. Participants in the Big Cat Expedition must be 10 years of age or older.
- How do I get to Big Cat Rescue?
- Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?
- Is there an age limit?
- Can I bring food or toys for the cats?
- Can I take pictures during my tour?
- Do I have to stay with the group, or can I wander?
- Are there restrooms?
- What if it rains?
- Can I bring my pet?
- Is there a charge for parking?
- Are you ADA compliant?
- Do you offer gift certificates?
- Do you offer private tours?
- Refund/Rescheduling Policy
- Weather Policy
- Other Policies
How do I get to Big Cat Rescue?
Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?
Advance purchase is required and tours do sell out quickly. To maximize your chances of getting the day that you prefer, please book well in advance! Tickets can be purchased online or over the phone with a Visa, Mastercard, or American Express.
Is there an age limit?
Children under 10 years old are not permitted due to the dangerous nature of this tour. Kids 10 years of age or older are welcome to attend. All attendees must purchase a full-price ticket.
Can I bring food or toys for the cats?
No, our diet is specific to their needs and we do not allow foods to be given to the cats that have not been approved by our vet and maintained under the most stringent quality controls. We do not give our cats toys that could cause harm if ingested so we do not permit toys from outside our own preselected vendors.
Can I take pictures during my tour?
YES! You are welcome to take photos and / or videos during your tour.
Do I have to stay with the group, or can I wander?
The only way to see the cats is on a guided tour, so you will not be able to wander away from the group.
Are there restrooms?
Yes, but we strongly suggest that you go before you get here because we have limited facilities and are on septic systems which cannot handle a lot of volume if there has been recent rain. There is a McDonald’s right at the corner of Easy Street.
What if it rains?
The DayTour will still go out in a light rain as long as there is no lightning. If it is thundering or pouring rain, we may try to wait it out, or will offer a refund, or rescheduling.
Can I bring my pet?
Is there a charge for parking?
Parking is always free and there is plenty of it except for our busiest times in Nov, Dec and March. During these busy times it is tight, but we will help you park at no additional fee.
Are you ADA compliant?
If you are unable to walk for two hours, we have golf carts available for $10 extra, per person riding. Our paths are dirt, so wheel chairs are hard to push, but scooters do well. There are no seats along the tour paths.
Do you offer gift certificates?
Yes! Gift certificates are available and they make perfect gifts for holidays, birthdays or any other occasion! To purchase a gift certificate please click on the “Gift Certificates: Purchase” link in the yellow box on this page: Gift Certificates for Feeding Tours
Do you offer private tours?
Yes! Please see the list of all activities to get more information about our Private Tours. Check out Visit the Cats to find out more about all of the exciting ways that you can have fun and help save the wild cats! We offer Feeding Tours, Night Tours and Keeper Tours.
Non-refundable, can be rescheduled with 24 hours notice.
Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded. You may reschedule your tickets (subject to availability) only if you do so at least 24 hours in advance.
Activity may be cancelled due to severe weather.
The activity usually runs in light rain and other moderate weather conditions, but the seller may cancel the activity up to an hour before the start time in the event of severe or unsafe weather conditions. If the seller cancels the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit for a future event.
There is no smoking allowed at Big Cat Rescue.
We do not allow smoking at Big Cat Rescue, except in the parking lot.
If you have been on a Feeding Tour, please tell others about your experience below: