Rocky Bobcat

Male Bobcat

DOB 4/22/97 – 11/2/09

Arrived 11/30/01

Rocky, Andi, & Sierra were bred for display at the Tennessee National Zoo, but were never used because the were very shy and hid from the public. The three bobcats grew up together in a holding facility at the zoo and when we rescued Nikita the lioness, the zoo asked Big Cat Rescue to take the three bobcats as well. Rocky was neutered and sent on his way with his bobcat buddies. The now have a very large enclosure with a rock cave to hide in. At dinner time many other cage mates will snarl at each other if one dares go into another’s feeding lockout. These three can often be seen all waiting patiently each in their own lockout for dinner.

11/2/09  Rocky the bobcat was taken in to the vet because he had been refusing to eat for the past 3 days. He had a broken canine tooth and several other bad teeth that had to come out. He did great through the surgery but at the very end as they were getting ready to reverse the anesthesia his heart rate and breathing dropped dramatically. Emergency measures were performed to revive him but he never woke back up and died in his sleep late last night on 11/2/2009. Rocky was 12 years old.

This is why learning Operant Conditioning and teaching it to the cats is so important. Rocky’s death was not preventable because he had to be anesthetized for the tooth extraction, but all too often big cats die from anesthesia just for routine examinations in other places.


Rocky was one of the most handsome bobcats we had at BCR. He was always full of beans, following me and hissing whenever I was cleaning his cage. He used to pounce on the pole when I put it in the cage and stand on it so I couldn’t move. Then, of course, he would come into lockout while I was cleaning his plate and walk all over it with his dirty feet. He was a big help. 🙂 I always enjoyed seeing him and will miss him now….Willow, volunteer keeper

Since I live part time in the Rocky Mountains, Rocky always meant something special to me. A handsome one of our “mountain bobs.” Not that I could ever forget any of our cats, but having him pass away on my birthday really reinforced that he would never be forgotten. R.I.P. little man…..Julie, Volunteer Senior Keeper
Rocky, what can I say… I want to say he was the sweetest bobcat in the world but anyone who met this feisty boy would know differently! Regardless, my several years of getting to know Rocky through cleaning, feeding, enriching and providing operant conditioning brought me to love him regardless of his disposition. He was always the ‘Big Boy’ amongst the tiny girls, Andi & Sierra, though I suspect that the girls ran the ‘household.’ His grace, tawny beauty and cat machismo was always evident. My time with him during operant was lightening fast but is now a bittersweet memory, he had gone through his share of operant sticks! The last time I saw him was on Sunday and he was lying under the palm fronds, dappled by sunlight with Sierra sitting close by watching over him as if to protect him. I will miss his fierceness and commanding attitude. He was aptly named after the Rocky Mountains as I can picture him living in those magnificent mountains personifying what a wild bobcat is meant to be. Lisa – Keeper….Lisa, Volunteer Senior Keeper

More Memorials at

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *