AdvoCat 2008 07

Rest Easy Knowing How We Spend Your Donations

Greetings Friend of Big Cat Rescue!

Is your name correct above? We put a huge emphasis on keeping our administrative costs very low so that the maximum amount of your donation dollars go to the cats. We have been very excited to see our base of visitors and supporters grow the last few years. But as the list grows, the challenge of managing the accuracy of the database and making sure the right name is with the right email address grows with it. I know we have had a few glitches, so I would really appreciate your help. If your name in this email is not correct, please help us correct it by emailing  Thanks!


Carole Baskin, Founder



  Big Cat Updates

The rehabilitation of Hope the baby bobcat has been caught on film from the beginning.  Episode 7 is the most recent and you can view it and get links to the previous 6 episodes here:

Hope the baby bobcatNow that Hope has moved to the outdoor rehab cage, we will be relying on security cameras for most of her monitoring.  These cameras watch over her 24 hours per day so that we can know that she is progressing as she should without her becoming accustomed to people.  They cost us $5,664.00 but are worth their weight in gold.  Please consider making a donation so that you can tell others how you sponsor a full time “overseer” for the baby bobcat.

Windstar moved into the waterfall cage next to Aquarius the Fishing Cat.  Of all of our bobcats, Windstar loves pools the most, so while his cat-a-tat is getting some upgrades, he is vacationing with a lake side view and a fish filled private pond.

Nyla leopard has been on the list to get an 8 x 12 concrete den, cleverly disguised as a fern covered hill, with a huge room addition since August of last year.  Her project kept getting pushed back due to the rescue of four tigers from a facility that was shut down by USDA in FL and 2 lions and 2 tigers who were rescued from Ohio.  Now Nyla has a hurricane shelter like all of the other cats and she is really loving it.

We want to say a special thank you to four of our staff & volunteers who have just completed their 10th year of service to the cats:  Bill Lewis, Mary Lou Geis, Cathy Neumann and Scott Lope.  You can read about them and their achievements on our Hero pages:


  Shop for (Museum) Cats

Raise Funds for Big Cat Rescue at No Extra Cost to You!

Big Cat Rescue is excited to announce its involvement as a Museum Partner with As a Museum Partner, anyone shopping online with their favorite national retailers can have a portion of their purchase directed to Big Cat Rescue at no additional cost.

Whether you are in the market for books, office supplies, apparel, gifts, travel reservations, home improvement, school supplies, toys, electronics, flowers or gourmet food…You name it, the place to start is at! To designate a portion of your next online purchase to Big Cat Rescue, simply:

• Go to
• Click on Shop Now!
• Click on Big Cat Rescue
• Then just click on the link of the store you want to visit and go about your shopping. Stores are organized by categories.

The percentage of your purchase will help feed the cats as long as you begin each time at The percentage Big Cat Rescue will earn is listed next to each store. Click on more information listed by each store to confirm which purchases are covered by the store, and to view sales and coupons for that store. You can also create a login where you can track your donations and allow Big Cat Rescue to thank you personally for your contributions.

Please use each time you shop online and spread the word to friends and family. Big Cat Rescue appreciates your support.

  A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words


President Jamie VeronicaBig Cat Rescue President Jamie Veronica is known for being a woman of few words, but her photos are speaking volumes around the globe.  Her photography has won many contests and been used on Animal Planet, Discovery Channel and in Encyclopedia Britannica to name a few.

This month she celebrates her 28th birthday, but has already racked up 16 years in big cat care.  Her contributions to the sanctuary include initiating the gift shop, the newsletter, the intern and volunteer programs, the Adopt a Cat and Membership programs, the Fur Ball and in 1999 she took over the rehabilitation and release programs.  If you have enjoyed our videos, you can thank Jamie for initiating that as well.

You can read more about these accomplishments here:

Jamie’s mission goes beyond the gates of Big Cat Rescue.  Her desire is to see cats living free and she has been concentrating her efforts on saving the cats and their habitats in Florida and South America.  She needs larger capacity memory cards for the camera traps that she uses to monitor activity in critical habitats.  You can help by sponsoring a 1GB camera trap memory card for 25.00 each.  Sponsor all four and get a complete set of wildlife images to date.

Make a donation here: and drop us a line at telling us to spend it on a camera traps.


  Trip Advisor Testimonials Needed

Clouded LeopardShare your experience visiting Big Cat Rescue at so that others who are thinking about visiting will make their plans to come see what you saw.  This page is ranked very high in the search engines, so you can reach millions of people with your adventures in saving big cats at Big Cat Rescue. Be sure to copy the entire URL.


  Give a Kid A Field Trip They Will Never Forget

Remember when you were a kid?   If you think back on the moments of your school experience that made the biggest impact on you, they probably include field trips, show and tell or other learning experiences where your senses were completely immersed in the subject matter.  Almost every person who calls us for an outreach program asks that we bring a cat to them and this shows us the huge need for educating the educators. One of the biggest problems that we face as a sanctuary is the never ending flood of animals in need of a place to live out their lives. The single largest cause of all of these unwanted animals are people who use them for “education” and “edutainment” until they won’t work any longer, which is usually by the time they are 1 to 5 years old. The people who make their living by bringing big cats to schools and events will dump the cats when they refuse to work. Then they buy or breed a new cub that will work for a few years more. These cats live to be in excess of 20 years and there is no where for them to go. It is demeaning to the cat and is not the message of respect that we should be teaching our children.

Kids at Big Cat RescueZoos are in the business of making sure they always have animals in cages, but Big Cat Rescue does not believe that exotic cats should be bred or traded for that purpose.  Our guided tours and field trips are intended to spark compassion for animals in our visitors so that the abuses that cause a need for rescue work will become a thing of the past.  With the cost of gas and budget cuts to the schools, we are seeing a slow down in field trips and a huge increase in requests for our free school tours.

We offer about 100 field trips per year and have committed to offering 12 of them for free each year to lower income schools, but have already given 30 such free tours this year and expect that demand will continue to rise with the cost of transportation.  Even when we offer the tours for free, many schools cannot come because they cannot afford the $200.00 fee for their busses.  You can help 60 children have the experience of a lifetime by sponsoring a bus ride for $200.00.  Anything you donate to our Education Program provides some of life’s most valuable lessons:  Learning to care about others.

Make a donation here: and drop us a line at telling us to spend it on a child’s education.

  Last Days for Fur Ball Early Cat Special

How does this gourmet meal sound to you? A first course of Baby Spinach Salad with Tomatoes, Mandarin Oranges, Gorgonzola and White Balsamic Vinaigrette, A La Carte Homemade Rolls to Include Crisp Lavash, a Second Course of either: Nitter Kibbeh CaracalPoached Cod, atop an Exotic Pilaf of Couscous with a Cardimum Coconut Cream Sauce, with Honey Roasted Carrots and Fresh Lime, Garnished with Sweet Potato Strings or a Vegetarian Option of Tabbouleh served with Honey Roasted Carrots, Fried Hummus Cakes (too good to even describe) with Fresh Cucumber Raita, and Pilaf of Couscous Garnished with Pickled Red Onion. And for desert “An African Huis Toe (hut)” Chocolate Tuille filled with Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse, “A Soetkoekie Roof” Sweet Wine and Spiced Cookie, Whip Cream, and Toasted Coconut with Fresh Slices of Star Fruit (a popular choice in Africa).

Can you taste the Fur Ball Fare already?  Oh, and don’t forget the awesome King of Feasts dessert contest where expert chefs compete to be the 2008 King of Feasts based upon YOUR votes cast for presentation and, best of all, taste!

We are searching out African themed dancers and performers.  If you know of a great performer who is willing to help save the big cats contact Jamie Veronica 813.323.3263 or

You can still get your Early Cat Special if you buy your tickets before July 31, 2008.  This special entitles you to a free raffle ticket (valued at $20.00) to win two Rolex watches.  Check out the trips and get your tickets at:


  Sell or Buy on eBay to Benefit the Cats

Got unwanted items you would sell in a garage sale, or do you operate a business selling on eBay and would like to donate a portion of your sales to the cats? You can do it with eBay’s easy Giving Works feature. When you list items through Giving Works, you designate what portion of your final sale price is to come to Big Cat Rescue. You can choose anywhere from 10% to 100%.

Your listing will benefit from several unique program features that have been proven to attract more buyers and raise awareness of our cause such as the eBay Giving Works ribbon and enhanced searchability.

Plus your listings will automatically qualify for the eBay Giving Works Fee Credit Benefit External Link and you’ll receive a tax-receipt for your donation.

How to Get Started:

1. Click “Customize your listing”
2. Look for the “eBay Giving Works” field (Click “Add or Remove Options” if you don’t see it) in the Sell Your Item form in the “Choose how you’d like to sell your item” area
3. Choose “Select a new nonprofit”
4. In the pop-up window that appears, type “Big Cat Rescue” in the “Nonprofit Name or Keyword” field
5. Select Big Cat Rescue and a percentage (10-100%) you wish to donate to us (please note: there is a $5 minimum donation if your item sells)

And what about supporting the cats by buying on eBay? You can see which sellers donate a portion of the sale price to Big Cat Rescue by visiting our MissionFish page at the URL below. The listings change constantly so visit often to grab bargains while turning your purchasing dollars into donations!

  Kidnapping & Death Threats

Circus Lion CubKidnapping attempts and death threats are just a few of the hardships faced by these big cat heroes as they work to save tigers, lions, jaguars and other exotic animals from the torture of circus life.

Some of us at Big Cat Rescue who speak out publicly for the cats know what it is like to be threatened by the evil people who use and abuse wild animals, but Pilar’s story is even more chilling and makes her an even greater hero in our book.

Read the letter she sent us last week about her ordeal to save a jaguar:

Former staff member Brian Czarnik is still saving tigers after his move to Chicago.  See the video he filmed at Big Cat Rescue that ran on CNN last week.  This video has been viewed more than 10,000 times already:


  Kids 4 Cats

Erin and Parker

The Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School of Palo Alto, California has an inspiring program and some amazing students. Seventh graders presented $57,000 to 46 charities.

Parker and her mom visited us on a whirlwind overnight trip from California as part of her research. Parker’s extensive efforts resulted in a gift of $1,116.46 to Big Cat Rescue.

In addition to her school project, this remarkable 13 year old asked friends and family to donate to Big Cat Rescue in lieu of personal gifts for her Bat Mitzvah. She and her mom again made the trip to Florida for Parker to attend Camp Big Cat 2008 for the week of June 23-26.  She is seen here delivering her school donation in person.

Thank you to Parker Levinson and family and the Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School for this impressive gift to benefit Big Cat Rescue. We have been fortunate to receive not only a monetary gift, but the gift of a friendship with Parker and her community.

Read more about her here:

Friends for Florida Favors Big Cat Rescue
Friends of FloridaEmily, Nick, Jordan, Jeremy & Cameron requested a tour to see our cats, and present a donation. Todd Mark, the group advisor said that this group started when his son was asking important questions about the wrongs he would see around him and what he could do to help.  After the tour they presented us with a $200.00 donation, thank you very much!
Mr. Mark later reported that “The Friends for Florida members mentioned it as one of their favorite places to visit for this past school year.”  The feeling was certainly mutual as it was truly our pleasure to have the Friends for Florida visit with us, and choose us a beneficiary of their efforts.


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