Jaguars of Big Cat Rescue

Bagheera Black Leopard

Hunted to extinction in the U.S. by 1940, the Jaguar is in trouble world wide, and two in particular are barely escaping death due to the rescue efforts of Big Cat Rescue.  There are only 300 such cats registered with the International species Information Service and only 22 of those are considered sufficiently pedigreed to be bred for conservation efforts.

When a road side zoo owner died recently, leaving behind Jaguars and Leopards, his wife called upon a family friend to help her find a home for the aging great cats.  Because their pedigrees are unknown, they are not valuable for conservation breeding.  Big Cat Rescue is the only big cat rescue facility in the East that is accredited by The Global Federation of Sanctuaries, so the two jaguars and a male leopard have finally made their way to our gate.

The Jaguars have been reportedly kept in a basement at the zoo for more than a year and haven’t seen sunlight in all that time.¬† The younger ones were on display and as is often the case, the surplus older cats were stored with no concern for their needs.¬† The black female is bloated and has calluses onher hips and elbows from being confined to a cement floored cage. The spotted male is grossly underweight and arthritic.¬† (In this photo you can count every rib and see the way his sides are caved inand his back legs wasted away.¬† He is rolling in the sun as if to try and soak up every possible ray.)¬† Both cats suffer from a bad infestation of worms and pneumonia.¬†Now they are here in sunny Florida at their lake side home that will be their safe haven from the abuse of man.¬† Here they will get the medical treatment they have been denied and a healthy diet.

The 20 year old female requires very expensive medication.  We need your help to be able to provide a permanent home.  Please click the button at top to make a contribution under the category called Donate.  Thank you from the Jaguar.  See update below first.

You can see the wasting away in the spotted male’s thighs and the sores on the black female’s elbows from not being fed and being kept on concrete until rescued.

UPDATE

Sadly the male Jaguar died three days after heroic efforts were made to save his life through emergency surgery to repair his mangled intestines.  He was 24 years old.  The necropsy showed that he had suffered a birth defect that had impaired all of his vital organs and it appeared that he had either not received treatment for a previous obstruction, or perhaps it had healed badly.  In either event he was starving to death despite eating massive amounts of food.  Unfortunately we had not been able to rescue him soon enough to save his life.

The story of this cat is just one of thousands who are kept for exhibition or as “pets” in backyards, basements, or even apartments in Harlem as we recently learned.¬† So that this noble animal, who truly was a “survivor” of such injustice for many years, will not have died in vain, I hope you will help make his story known.¬† The only way we can reduce the amount of this kind of abuse is by making people aware that they should not support those who display these animals in unaccredited zoos and should not purchase them as pets.¬† Please speak out for him now.¬† You are the only voice he has.

We are so grateful to everyone who helped make his last month a warm and pleasant one where he could sleep away the day in the soft grass next to his mate.

Black Mamba, the 22 year old female had arrived with teeth so rotten that she was spewing blood and mucous and coughing constantly on her own purulent fluids. We tried to extract the teeth, but she was in such horrible condition that she died on the operating table. Through heroic efforts she was revived by Dr. Stacie Wadsworth, DVM, but the tooth extraction had to be halted.

We spent the next six months getting her stronger through a good diet and the gentle exercise of having her huge Cat-A-Tat to walk about, with it’s logs and hills for climbing and pool for swimming. In April we attempted the surgery again to remove the cause of the infection. She survived the surgery and is recovering very nicely, but a biopsy done on her jaw bone indicates bone cancer. At her advanced age there is not much that can be done for her, other than to keep her comfortable and make her story known so that others like her don’t have to suffer. The photo at right is August 2004. Black Mamba died in her sleep at the age of 23 in December of 2004.

The Jaguars Speak

These Jaguars speak to us from the Other Side now and say that the Secret is the answer to all that has been, all that is and all that will ever be.  The Secret is the Law of Attraction.  Just like other laws of Nature, such as gravity, the Law of Attraction is unchangeable.  This law is that Like attracts Like.  We are all like magnets and we attract to ourselves the things we think about.  Whatever the mind can conceive it can achieve.  If we are loving, peaceful, caring, giving and kind we can only attract those qualities in others and will find ourselves surrounded people with those qualities and experiences of the best kind.

DONATIONS FROM JAGUAR OF TAMPA SAVE ABUSED JAGUARS

Below is the article that appeared recently in our newsletter about the wonderful donations we are receiving from Jaguar of Tampa to help support the sick, abused jaguars we rescued with the help of their funding.  Sadly, the male spotted jaguar did not survive the required surgery.  But Jaguar of Tampa has continued the full support they had promised in order to help us save the female black jaguar.  She is currently undergoing treatment and not out of danger, but we are hopeful.

Jaguar of Tampa is our first major corporate sponsor coming to the aid of cats they were not directly responsible for.  (The circus provides support for the cats they retire at our facility, which we appreciate very much.)  We hope to develop a broader program of corporate support.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Send an email of thanks.  We all like to know our efforts are appreciated, and this is particularly true of corporate sponsors.  There is only so much we can say ourselves to thank Rob Elder of Jaguar of Tampa for his support.   The rest has to come from those who value the work we do for the cats.  You can help by sending a short email to SaveTheJaguars@bigcatrescue.org thanking Mr. Elder for what he has done to support Big Cat Rescue and the jaguar we are trying to nurse back to health.  And we thank you for taking the time to do this!

JAGUAR OF TAMPA
AND BCR RESCUE TWO ABUSED JAGUAR CATS

THE CATS’ STORY

The two Jaguars, a spotted 24 year old male and black 20 year old female, were owned by a small road side zoo in New Hampshire. They had been kept in tiny cages in the basement at the zoo for more than a year and haven’t seen sunlight in all that time. As is often the case because people want to see younger cats, these surplus older cats were stored with no concern for their needs. The black female is bloated and has calluses on her hips and elbows from being confined to a cement floored cage. When the owner died, his wife sold the cats that were marketable. But these two were in such bad shape they could not be sold. The female was blowing massive amounts of mucous discharge. This was caused by rotten teeth that were so bad the infection had progressed into her sinuses.

The spotted male is grossly underweight and arthritic. In this photo you can count every rib and see the way his sides are caved in and his back legs wasted away. He is rolling in the sun as if to try and soak up every possible ray. He has had radiographs, blood tests, ultra sound and exploratory surgery to fully ascertain his condition.  Both cats arrived with heavy parasite infestation that is responding to treatment.

THE PROBLEM – FUNDING TO SUPPORT THE CATS

When we got the call about the jaguars in distress, our initial reaction was that we would have to give the same painful response we had already given over 300 times this year to people trying to place unwanted cats at the sanctuary, i.e. that the sanctuary had land, but no funds to build an enclosure or pay for food and veterinary costs for additional cats. That is when we decided to try what we thought was a “long shot”. We called our local Jaguar car dealership, Jaguar of Tampa, to ask for help.

JAGUAR OF TAMPA STEPS IN

Rob Elder of Jaguar of Tampa visited Big Cat Rescue. He watched as Shere Khan, the 800 pound tiger, stealthily approached the fence of his natural “cat-a-tat” enclosure and stood staring at Rob just three feet away. He then toured the rest of the 42 acre facility visiting the many different species of cat and hearing their personal stories. He learned about the issues that lead to the widespread abuse and abandonment of these cats, and the personal story of the two unwanted jaguars, and knew he had to help.

JAGUAR CARS AND JAGUAR OF TAMPA SPONSOR THE CATS

With the help of Jaguar Cars, Jaguar of Tampa came up with a program to fund the entire cost of supporting the two Jaguars. Based on that, Big Cat Rescue has accepted the cats and is currently providing medical care to bring them back to health. An initial donation check of $4000.00 was presented to Big Cat Rescue on October 23. In addition, Jaguar of Tampa committed to make an ongoing donation for each car sold starting November 1, 2003. The dealership is also posting display materials about the jaguars and BCR in their beautiful showroom and service waiting lounges to help to acquaint customers with Big Cat Rescue and ask for their help.

UPDATE

Male Jaguar. Sadly the male Jaguar died three days after heroic efforts were made to save his life through emergency surgery to repair his mangled intestines.  The necropsy showed that he had suffered a birth defect that had impaired all of his vital organs and it appeared that he had either not received treatment for a previous obstruction, or perhaps it had healed badly.  In either event he was starving to death despite eating massive amounts of food.  Unfortunately we had not been able to rescue him soon enough to save his life.

The story of this cat is just one of thousands who are kept for exhibition or as “pets” in backyards, basements, or even apartments in Harlem as we recently learned.¬† So that this noble animal, who truly was a “survivor” of such injustice for many years, will not have died in vain, I hope you will help make his story known.¬† The only way we can reduce the amount of this kind of abuse is by making people aware that they should not support those who display these animals in unaccredited zoos and should not purchase them as pets.¬† Please¬†speak out¬†for him now.¬† You are the only voice he has.

We are so grateful to everyone who helped make his last month a warm and pleasant one where he could sleep away the day in the soft grass next to his mate.

Female Jaguar. On April 22, 2004 the female Jaguar had the two worst teeth removed and a biopsy performed on the bone tissue.  The results that came back on the lab tests confirmed our worst fear:  bone cancer.  Jaguars have very thick bones and estimating the amount of time before the cat would experience pain that would cause us to have to put her down is difficult. Dr. Wadsworth indicated that it could be as short as a few weeks, or as long as a few months. Our plan was to make however long she had left as comfortable as possible while watching for signs of discomfort.

The female jaguar recovered quickly from the surgery and returned to her normal life. During the ensuing months she continued to eat well, maintain a glistening healthy coat, and was surprisingly active for a cat of her advanced age of 23. Occasionally we detected moderate swelling on one side of her face, but there were no indications of discomfort. She passed away peacefully during the night on December 15, 2004.

Jaguar of Tampa Continued Support.

These two majestic cats suffered their entire lives at the hands of man.  Jaguar of Tampa generously gave them, in their final months, the kind of life they should have had the many years before.  Jaguar of Tampa continues to give each car purchaser a sponsor kit funded by the dealership.  Proceeds are used to fund Cheetaro, a six year old spotted leopard rescued from the same roadside zoo that the two jaguars were from.  We cannot thank Rob Elder and Jaguar of Tampa enough for their compassion and generous support of the sanctuary!

To see a movie clip of the Black Jaguar, click the play button on the Window Movie Player at right.

The jaguars are nuzzling in the grass of their new Tampa home.

J.W. Baker did the beautiful Jaguar renditions below that you can purchase in our secure online gift shop by just clicking on the pictures.  Your purchase helps save the Jaguars.

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