AdvoCat 2009 08

Greetings Friend of Big Cat Rescue,

I just applied online for a credit card that features one of our own big cats and was approved right away!  You can give more without spending more by turning your everyday spending into meaningful donations with a customized Big Cat Rescue Capital One credit card.

Share your passion and donate to Big Cat Rescue with your everyday purchases. We’ve partnered with Capital One® Card Lab Connect to bring you our newest fundraising program, which helps us earn money doing what you do every day! Just carry one of our custom credit cards (it comes with a competitive rate and no annual fee), and 1% of purchases made with the card will be donated to Big Cat Rescue.

We’ll also receive a $25 bonus donation when you make your first purchase. And not only will you be donating to the cats with each purchase you make, you’ll be helping to spread the word when people see your wildly unique card, designed specifically for Big Cat Rescue.  Three custom cards are currently available featuring Cameron the lion, Cheetaro the leopard, and Shere Khan & China Doll the tigers!  What a great way to share the cats’ stories every time you pull out your credit card.

Sharing your passion and your support is easy and automatic. Apply today!

Tiger credit card Leopard credit card Lion credit card





  Anastasia Lynx’s Journey: Fur Farm to Freedom

Anastasia Siberian LynxI was there years ago when Anastasia lost her long time mate, Stalker. I worried, “how would she go on?” She did, she was strong, she was a survivor. But, I would never have guessed just how strong. I can’t tell you how many times I said “goodbye” to her. She became so debilitated. I thought that there was no way she’d continue on. But she still had such a will to live. Every day I’d clean Genie’s enclosure next door, I’d visit Ana and she was always interested in what I was doing.

The best memory I had was of the day we passed out evergreen boughs as enrichment. Everyone had moved on. I lingered to watch, since she was acting pretty shy with all the attention. As soon as the volunteers left, she leapt down off her den – which was pretty amazing for a lynx with very poor control of her hindquarters – and dived right into the pile of boughs, rubbing and rubbing, smelling and smelling, enthralled with the new addition to her enclosure. That taught me that you’re never too old, never too frail, never to be underestimated. She was an incredible lynx I’ll never forget…….Julie, Volunteer Senior Keeper

Read other keeper’s tributes to Anastasia and see Julie’s touching video here:


  Vote To Help Us Win $2000 at Howcast

“How to Make a Tiger Popsicle” is a fun 3 minute video we have entered into a contest at Howcast.  Help us win by viewing the clip and giving it a Thumbs Up vote. Viewer voting is from today until 11:59 pm on Aug. 24th,2009 and you can vote for us every day here:

  Fur Ball Jaguar Video and Bucs Raffle


Want to see the Bucs from luxurious, padded Club Seats, originally $590 a pair, with access to the Club Lounge during the game? We are raffling off tickets to the first four games generously donated by Jeff and Brigitte Ajluni. The games are Miami Dolphins Thursday August 27 at 8:00 pm, Houston Texans Friday September 4 at 7:00 pm, Dallas Cowboys Sunday September 13 at 1:00 pm and New York Giants Sunday September 27 at 1:00 pm. If you do not win the first game, your raffle ticket stays in the bowl for the drawing for each of the subsequent games. Raffle tickets are only $5 for one, $20 for ten (only $2 per ticket!). Drawings are three days before each game. For tickets visit:

To see some of the great auction items and Jay Leno in a racy new Jaguar video visi:


  Find Your Name in Big Cat News

At Big Cat Rescue we are always looking for better ways to do our job. Part of our weekly staff meeting includes each member telling the group what they have done to make doing their job here more efficient.  Less than 15% of your donation goes into fundraising and administrative costs here, when the norm is more than twice as much. The economy is hitting us hard and we are seeking better ways to get the cats’ message out that are earth friendly and cost effective. One new way is to bring our 12 page, full color Big Cat Times to more people in an online magazine format.  And the coolest thing is that it is searchable, so you can search for info that interests you, or search for your name to see if we remembered to thank you as a donor in the past three months.  Check it out and let us know what you think.

  New Free Flash Games & New Child Safety ID Kits

Our game pages are free and have useful tools for parents too.  LaWanna has created a lot more fun games like Solitaire, Big Cat Dress Up, Animated Matching Games, Tic-Tac-Toe and a Bubble Popping Game that both kids and adults are sure to enjoy.  Be a Game Test Pilot to let us know which games are your favorites and which ones still need work:

In America an average of 2,000 children are reported missing every day. When a child goes missing giving the police complete and accurate information QUICKLY can be a challenge! Critical minutes are often wasted gathering information. Having this information pre-printed and UP-TO-DATE saves valuable time! Getting an Amber Alert issued more quickly can greatly increase the chances of a safe return of your child.

Leanne said, “I am the board member for our Neighbor Hood Watch Programme here in Australia and also the mother of two children aged 3 and 6. I love this safety kit and would like to put them on CD-ROM and hand them out to mums and dad’s that come to our centre looking for more information on how to keep their children safe in the community.”  Get your FREE Child Safety ID Kit here:

  Big Cat Rescuers of Another Stripe

Dr. Rowena Watson Dr. Ted Mashima Barbara Frank Jen RuszczykOn Saturday, July 25 Big Cat Rescue was honored by a visit by Rowena Watson, PhD. and Ted Mashima, DVM. Dr. Watson is a Wildlife Conservation Consultant in Washington, DC. and Dr. Mashima is the Associate Executive Director for Academic and Research Affairs. They said they were quite impressed with Big Cat Rescue and the work that we do. The most wonderful compliment was heard when Dr. Mashima said he has never heard so much chuffing from captive tigers before.  Read about and see photos from their visit HERE

Nikki Benoit and Carole Baskin recently met with Senator Nelson’s Regional Director Shahra Anderson who happens to be a vegetarian and who is just a delightful person. Shahra told Regional Director Digna Alvarez about our visit and Digna brought her office staff and daughter to the sanctuary to learn more about the pervasive and problematic issue of big cats in back yards.  Senator Nelson has introduced a bill in Congress to add pythons to the list of animals that cannot be imported for trade.  This action stems from the estimated 100,000+ pythons that are sucking the native wildlife out of the Everglades like a monstrous vacuum cleaner.  The problem has already extended far north of the Everglades though, as Big Cat Rescue has been called upon to remove pythons from Tampa playgrounds and walking trails. Pythons as long as 15 feet have been found in the Tampa area running loose.  The problem is that in FL the wildlife rules have been made by the Florida Wildlife Commission and they don’t want to ban the private possession of dangerous wild animals.  Help ban these cruel and reckless practices at a federal level so that states like FL, OH, TX, SC & MO no longer provide havens for animal abusers.

  New Movies and Taking Action for Animals

Big Cat Rescue sponsored the showing of “The Tiger Next Door” to attendees of the Taking Action for Animals Conference. The documentary’s creator, Camilla Calamandrei had so many people interested in knowing more about the film that after the Q&A session ended in the theater, it spilled out into the lobby where she continued to share her experiences with the crowd who gathered around her. The movie is not available for sale over the Internet yet, but to ask about how you can get a pre-release copy email  See the trailer here:

The Cove is another excellent documentary that exposes the trade in dolphins here:

Lots of great things are happening around the globe to help save the tiger and the other top cats of the forests.  Please use the form at the link below to write a letter to our CITES representatives, and let them know that you support strong tiger conservation, but you insist that they protect the bobcat from being trapped and shipped to Russia to be made into coats.

  Big Cat Card Store

Cat CardThanks to the combined efforts of Big Cat Rescuer’s LaWanna Jones and Jamie Veronica and Angela Medlar at we can now offer you a wide array of greeting cards that you can select and purrr-sonalize online. With just a click Enthusem will print and mail to your recipient for just $3.95 including postage!  No more paying high prices and being shoved aside in the store while you try to find that perfect card that says “you love cats.”  Now you can browse from your computer and find photo cards of our big cats that are breathtakingly beautiful, roaringly funny, or that have just the right message.


  IDS Cool Cats

BCR was privileged to again host the Independent Day School’s “Cool Cats” on tour on Friday May 22nd. The first and second grade students came out to present Big Cat Rescue with a remarkable donation they raised of over $1,000 dollars! This is probably the 8th to 10th year that IDS has donated to Big Cat Rescue. It used to be Wildlife on Easy Street when they started. Back then $350.00 was a lot of money to donate – now they routinely raise over $1,000.00!

This project started as a community service. Almost every class at IDS takes part in giving back to the community. This project is also a hands on education in economics and beginning a business. First students secure a loan from the “bank of IDS” (the school), complete with collateral. The children then set up a “Safari” store where safari type items are sold to the whole school. The children also produce and package a trail mix called “Meow Chow” to sell at the store. The students decide what to sell based on items that were popular in the past. They advertise the store with posters, commercials and ads in the school newsletter. The children act as sales people, cashiers and accountants throughout the process. All of these efforts culminate in a wonderful field trip to Big Cat Rescue where the children get to see firsthand how all their work has paid off!

The teachers involved this year were Debi Brockmeyer and Andria Petty. It just goes to show that at any age people can make a difference. We extend our sincere thanks to the students and teachers of the Independent Day School who really are “The Cool Cats that Care.”

by: Dr. Beth Kamhi, Education Director  Cool Cats

  Sweet 16 Kiss Zza Zza the Ocelot


Zza Zza the OcelotBig Cat Rescue was founded sixteen years ago in 1992 and to celebrate our anniversary we are going to celebrate the sixteen species of wild cat that reside at the sanctuary.

This month you can “kiss” Zza Zza the Ocelot.

November honored Windsong the Bobcat who started Big Cat Rescue and December’s cat – Hercules the Snow Leopard. February’s cat – Genie the Sandcat.  March’s cat – Nik the Tiger, April’s cat – Rambo the Jungle Cat, May’s cat – Aspen Echo the Cougar & June’s cat – Esmerelda the Serval. Last month you could “kiss” Sabre the Leopard.

“Kiss” Zza Zza the Ocelot today or “Kiss” them all:

  Two Events This Week for Cats Large and Small


Saturday August 15 Noon till 5 PM Wine and Cats Event

For $25.00 you can eat and drink 30 different kinds of wines at this wine tasting party hosted by PRP Wines.  RSVP to Rosie Joseph at 813.361.1241 or  Come to the back entrance of Big Cat Rescue at 8013 N. Meadowview Circle Tampa, FL 33625 (do not come to the front gate as you will not be able to get to the party from there).

August 15 at 8 PM Tropical Nights;

An Event Offered To All Animal Based Charities

Think your organization is too small to host a big fundraiser? Jack Talman and Rick Medina want to make it easy for you.

Animal Based Charities’ allows smaller animal charities to sell tickets to the event and submit items to the auction in exchange for half the proceeds. With more than 40 rescue groups in the Tampabay area alone, this event will combine the efforts of many animal based charities to have an fundraiser that will have people talking about it for a long time to come.

Big Cat Rescue will donate one limited admission ticket to tour their sanctuary to everyone who purchases a ticket to”Tropical Nights.” That is a $25.00 value included in their Tropical Nights ticket purchase for free. (limited to use M-F at 9am or 3pm only. No kids under 10 yrs.)

When: August 15, 2009

Where: Crowne Plaza Hotel 5303 West Kennedy Blvd. Tampa 33609 (capactiy 450 guests, great parking and atmosphere)

Download the Invitation HERE

Download the RSVP cards HERE

Who: Contact Rick Medina to apply as an animal based charity who would like to benefit from this magical night of giving. 813-380-5674 or


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