Vacation Rotation & FunCation
The 2.5 acre Vacation Rotation enclosure was open for business on July 30, 2013. It took 11 months to raise the $200,000 needed and to build this huge open space where our big cats can take 2 week vacations from their home cat-a-tats.
Vacation Rotation audio on the Big Cat Tour app and automated tour.
See who is on vacation and watch them LIVE here: http://explore.org/live-cams/player/big-cat-rescue-vacation-rotation
In the wild big cats would roam hundreds of miles. They are intelligent, active creatures who prefer to hunt at dusk and dawn, but who can see very well at night. They spend their days sleeping and getting ready for the darker hours when they reign supreme over all their domain.
Unfortunately, most captive situations, provide far too small a space for these big cats and even worse, they are usually locked into tiny, concrete, windowless cells called night houses, during the time of day when they would most like to be out roaming. The reason they are locked up at night is because zoos aren’t open at night and they want the cats to be active when paying guests are there. In most cases there will be one large enclosure that the public sees and then tiny jail cells where the cats spend days at a time, so that if it is their only day to be outside, they will be active for the paying public.
At Big Cat Rescue the cats have far more space, per cat, than most other facilities, but even still it is far too small, in our opinion. That’s why we built the two and a half acre Vacation Rotation enclosure.
Each of our lions and tigers can enjoy a two week vacation in this open air space that has a pond, a fountain, lots of dens, tunnels, platforms and trees to enjoy. Big cats are solitary by nature and most of our cats prefer to live alone and vacation alone. We do not force our cats to share space or fight over food. They each have well over 1,200 square feet of space to themselves in their own Cat-a-Tats, but then twice a year they get 2 week vacations into this huge space.
We move the cats to and from vacation via above ground tunnels around the sanctuary.
The only time there are multiple cats in cages or on vacation together is if they have been raised together and truly enjoy the company. Anywhere that you see cats living together they are neutered or spayed to ensure that we do not breed cats for life in cages.
Even this huge vacation area is still a cage and we do not believe that wild cats belong in captivity. We do the best we can for the cats we rescue, but the best thing all of us can do is to end the trade in exotic cats by never paying to see or touch cubs.
FunCation is the Small Cat Fun Space
The FunCation is the Small Cat Fun Space that opened in April 2016 after two years of fundraising for over $100,000 and two years of construction to enclose more than 22,000 square feet under a single roof.
Smaller cats, like leopards, cougars, servals, bobcats, caracals and others get a one week vacation from their typical 1200 + square foot enclosures in this huge play yard full of trees, dens, platforms and things for busy cats to do.
We are still building above ground tunnels to move the larger cats to and from FunCation, but the smaller cats still have to be crated to move.
The good news is that doing so helps them feel more comfortable going into the transport crates so they don’t always think it means a trip to the vet!