AdvoCat 2007 11


These first fall breezes bring refreshment to both us and the cats alike. You’ll have to come out for a tour and see our newest rescues and the friskiness it ushers in for each and every cat. We hope you are reveling in the season’s change and have a happy Thanksgiving. This time of year always brings many significant items to report to you from illegal fur sales to our spotlight in U.S. News & World Report to upcoming calendar sales.


Carole Baskin, Founder




 It’s a Wrap!

We are thrilled to report that Lindy Melendez with ESG Printing has generously donated a van “wrap” that is valued at $5000. Van wrap by Euro Street  Graphics

Lindy tells us, ” I have lived in Tampa since 1991 from Miami. About 5-6 years later, I would notice that big cat sign as I drove down Gunn WAY. About a year ago I changed my hours and have been able to really enjoy my weekends and time with my girlfriend and family. Kali is my girlfriend and we both have a huge love for animals, I especially for cats. The experience at big cat rescue was life-changing.

He stated, “‘When I saw the van I thought to myself “what a huge canvas to work on”, I’m sure what it had on there serviced its purpose but I knew the potential it really had with the digital printing technology of today ! With your van I wanted not only to identify it as a BCR vehicle but I wanted it to turn heads and provide an advertising media you currently didn’t have. You NOW have a traveling billboard you can park anywhere from events, to theater parking lots and spread awareness of BCR. ‘

The wrap was done with a lot of love from everyone at ESG Printing. We thank them for helping us make this kind of impact and get this kind of exposure.

He started his business in 1997 as a vehicle graphics business providing graphics to commercial vehicles and race cars. Through the years they have expanded their services to include digital banners, trade show displays, billboards and vehicle wraps. He also prints brochures, business cards, mousepads, mugs etc. We would like to highly recommend Lindy and EGS Printing for any of your printing needs. Let’s get behind those who are behind us.


Click here to see the van…


Big Cat Mug Shots Catch Poachers Red-handed

The illegal portion of the 20 billion dollar trade in exotic pets is second only to the market for illegal drugs. In 2005, some 210 million wild animals were brought legally into the U.S. and many more were smuggled, because there are just 120 USFWS inspectors to cover 39 International airports and all of the border crossings. In just the legal importations, that means each inspector must view and approve the health of almost 15,000 animals per day, every day of the year.

Snow LeopardWorld Wildlife Fund of Poland (WWF)- an international non-governmental wildlife conservation organization, is preparing a wild cat manual for Polish Customs and Police CITES coordinators. Big Cat Rescue has been invited to participate with our photos and knowledge of big cats. Its purpose is to facilitate a proper identification for officers, of all wild cat species – both live and their parts (skins, skulls etc.) The manual will be distributed for free to the officers during a workshop, which WWF organizes specially for coordinators in Poland. Special training on wild cats’ identification is crucial, as cat skins are seized every year on polish borders. This is a distinctive honor for us to be able to use our experience to impact real life criminal happenings and make changes to save animal’s lives.


 Illegal Fur Sales


Holly Zello is one of our front-line fighters, so to speak. She brings us news of her latest efforts which are nothing short of amazing! She tells us, “I have some news about my efforts to stop illegal sales of big cat furs on eBay and updated info about my guides.  Luckily, my Endangered Species Furs Guide is now shows up on eBay’s main menu when someone types in relevant keywords like “leopard, ocelot or cheetah” fur.  Being on that main page means it’s now easily accessible, has received many more page hits and apparently is being read by members.  This is much welcomed news and I feel the guide is finally having the desired effect toward deterring these auctions.

Leopard CheetaroAlso, it seems my reports to US Fish & Wildlife Law Enforcement are paying off, too.  In the past, I’ve been frustrated by eBay failing to remove auctions brought to their attention.  Clear violations by sellers listing “leopard skin” got deleted, no problem.  With no other recourse, I began forwarding the details of those sales to the USFW law enforcement.  For many months I noticed little change, but it seems that the Feds have finally begun putting the heat on eBay.  I’m finding far fewer auctions now and those I report are usually deleted with much less fuss.

I’ve also resorted to contacting sellers directly, politely notifying them that their items constituted ESA law violations and could result in Federal fines.  Surprisingly, of the 5 or 6 sellers I’ve emailed, all but one gave me a warm reception and voluntarily deleted their auctions.  Also, eBay is finally doing their part by ferreting out these auctions.    So I’m proud to say this does feel like a measure of victory.

I would like to write an eBay buyer’s guide specifically about the use of domestic cats & dogs in the fur trade.  My ES fur guide touches on the “Lipi cat fur” problem, but I feel this matter warrants more attention; ie; it’s own Guide.  I believe that most buyers have no clue that domestic cats are being used for fur coats. Thanks for informing me about the exotic cat campaign efforts by IFAW and Dog-Cat Fur campaign through HSUS.

It pleases me to write with good news for a change and am proud to say that anyone searching for exotic cat furs on eBay now is sure to notice their absence.  Big cat fur has almost been eliminated from eBay. Basically, the speed bump that I helped to put in eBay’s path against these auctions two years ago is becoming a brick wall.  My words and your pictures have had an impact, so our combined efforts have made a difference.

    eBay Guide: Leopard, ocelot Endangered Species fur



 Vote for Big Cat Rescue at WEDU

You have voted Big Cat Rescue the number one charity in WEDU’s Be More Awards program every year since it began. Today the polls open online to cast your vote for this year’s award in the People’s Choice category.  In year’s past you were only allowed to vote once and because so many of you did, we won.  This year they are allowing people to vote as often as they want so it is even more important that you vote at least once for us now.  Let the world know that Big Cat Rescue is your favorite of these 85 charities.  (If there is a problem reaching the link try

 Medieval Fair Update

Rosaires Big Cat HabitatWe’d like to thank those who sent emails and report results of having contacted the Sarasota Medieval Fair in protest to the tigers being exploited.  We can report that we got no response from the Fair Operator.  We did however, get a call from Hunsader Farms, the land owner, whose  reaction was negative. He sees no problem with dragging tigers out to such venues in circus wagons or what amounts to a rolling aquarium tank.  As a reminder, in any case where we approach an owner or proprietor, we always want to do so professionally and with self-control. There is nothing to be gained from throwing stones. We must make our case in a composed, concise and pertinent way.  We’d like to suggest that if you would like to be an advocate in this way now and in the future, to take “high road” be polite, only send one letter, and express your views with courtesy.

Ask that big cats not be used this way now…

 U.S. News & World Report

Howard in US News & World ReportWe knew he had smarts, we knew he had charm, we knew he had a passion for cats, but did you know what a great representative he was in one of our nation’s top magazines? I’m biased being he is my husband, but I must give credit to Howard Baskin for the latest U.S. News and World Report spotlight which featured him. He represented us well and served as a great ambassador in print to those who may not have been exposed to our mission as of yet. We can never get enough of media attention for the cats. We will continue and make these efforts and do these interviews until we have changed the laws and no cat is at risk of exploitation.

Read U.S. News & World Report here…


 Holiday Bookmarks & Crafts

Have a bit of light-hearted holiday fun with your children. Kids can drag and drop Thanksgiving and Christmas characters and graphics onto a blank bookmark to decorate it any way they want to. They can add bit of text at the top and at the bottom of the bookmark, thus making it a personalized gift. The bookmark has a place in the top that you can cut out or punch out and string some yarn or a tassel through it.   Visit the Christmas pages for big cat crafts to decorate the tree, gifts to make and give and programs to create purr-sonalized letters to Santa.  Check out all the new games and crafts that our AdvoCat, LaWanna, has made for you to do.

Thanksgiving Pages…

Christmas Pages…

 2008 Calendars

24 hours in a day and 7 days a week – something we are all equally given. However, it’s many times, the ones of us who keep ourselves organized with a good calendar who seem to be on top of our games. Here’s to a great 2008.

Click to choose one…



Kitty Quip

Topaz the Cat“There is no need for a piece of sculpture in a home that has a cat.”
Wesley Bates


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