Fwd: [BCRVolunteers] copy of letter regarding Rosaire’s Big Cat Encounter

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From: Julie Hanan [mailto:Jhanan1@verizon.net]

Sent: Saturday, September 27, 2008 12:25 PM
To: 'orangeburgmotoplex@gmail.com'
Subject: Attention: L. C. Kissam III – Manager


rosaire.jpgThis is a picture of one of the Rosaire’s tigers performing recently.   Cat behavioralists will confirm that the ears are down and this animal is acting out of fear. What do you think they use as training techniques?  At a USDA Big Cat Symposium in Fort Worth, Texas on March 26, 2003, Kay Rosaire made this statement on stage: "To keep a tiger off you, you just poke 'em real hard with a pitchfork a time or two and show 'em who's boss. Then they'll get the message." Having lions and tigers traveling the country "performing" is not only inhumane to the animals, but also poses a danger to citizens and could make your county and the fair organizers liable for injuries or deaths.

The Fund for Animals has condemned other venues hiring Rosaire's Big Cat Encounter. There is a huge risk promoting captive wild animal shows such as this. Only 2 months ago, there was a perfect example of the libelous conditions you are setting yourself up for by hiring this act.  At Springfield, Ohio’s fair, the Rosaires fought severe weather all night.  It ended up destroying animal cages, collapsing the tents. Clayton Rosaire even suffered broken bones trying to maintain the security and safety of the cages.  The cats had to be locked up in a trailer. When you hire dangerous acts, you expose yourself to dangerous consequences.  Is this something your fair really needs? 

Or perhaps imagine the life these cats lead being dragged around the country constantly forced to “perform.” People unfortunately trust that these exotic animals can be domesticated but, in fact, the animals often retain their wild instincts. According to the Captive Wild Animal Protection Coalition, captive wild cats exhibited to the public have been responsible for 8 deaths and over 60 injuries. Kay Rosaire has been cited for a number of infractions, including Animal Welfare Act violations. In 1999, the Big Cat Encounter was cited by the USDA for failure to provide proper veterinary care and for cages that did not meet minimal size requirements. They are not accredited. Make no mistake, this is a business for the Rosaire's.  They breed, they do not rescue. 

In this day and age, there is nothing “educational” about seeing wild animals caged, transported from venue to venue, “tamed” using abusive methods, and existing solely as a profit center for a business.  The least captive wild animals deserve is to be treated as animals, not as stage props. By including this performing act, you are teaching the public that inhumanely treating animals is something you endorse.

Please rethink your position, cancel this act now, and show that you truly care about educating the public who, by the way, flock to see Cirque du Soleil type shows that DO NOT include animal acts.

Thank you for your consideration,

Julie Hanan

Storms sidelined cats, but back now

By Emanuel Cavallaro
Staff Writer
Wednesday, July 23, 2008

SPRINGFIELD – The tigers at the Big Cat Encounter are performing
again, following the destruction caused to their cage and tent by a
fierce passing storm.

"We can't do anything," Clayton Rosaire said Tuesday afternoon, July
22, after the storm blew through Clark County "We're just letting
people get a chance to see how beautiful they are."

The 28-year-old Rosaire said he, his father and brother-in-law spent
much of early Tuesday morning in the elements fighting to save the 40-
foot tent that sheltered the tiger cage.

When the huge tent fell, it broke about six panels from the cage.
Later Tuesday, the long poles that made up the framework that held up
the tent lay broken on the ground.

"The rain was just so strong, and we were out here all night trying
to fight the weather," Rosaire said.

The five cats, Bengal and Siberian hybrids, were safe in a large
reinforced trailer during the storm. In the confusion and darkness,
Rosaire inadvertently kicked one of the tent poles on the ground and
broke two of his toes.

In the shows on Tuesday, the cats didn't perform so much as laze
around as Rosaire showed them off to spectators, partly because the
door that allowed him safe access to the tiger cage also was damaged
in the storm.



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For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org MakeADifference@BigCatRescue.org

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