5 Star Reviews for Big Cat Rescue
Big Cat Rescue is an amazing non profit animal sanctuary that is a must see if visiting the Tampa area. While visiting, I participated in the daily tour as well as the feeding tour. Both tours are very worth while as you get to see most of the cats up close (you will not get to see the Liger- and rightfully so after you hear the story) and learn each of their stories. The tour guides truly know their stuff and seem very genuine in their love for these animals. The stories behind the cats are often very sad but you get a sense that these animals are now much better off. While it would be wonderful if all of these animals could have remained in the wild, the sanctuary is the next best place. « show less
This rescue learned the hard way what was the right path to helping animals, and has provided a safe and engaging environment for big wild cats now for many years. Victims of ignorant breeders, idiots that chose the wrong pet, drug-dealers, and horrifying roadside attractions…. these animals deserve a place they can live their lives out happily, with proper health care and stimuli. Our tour guide, an adorable British intern, really gave valuable facts regarding the animals, as well as their personal stories of inhumane captivity and the growth they have made since their rescue. I definitely support this organization. A very responsible solution to a dangerous problem, of which most animal lovers may not be aware. « show less
I took my husband to Big Cat Rescue as a surprise-(it was my first time as well) and we both LOVED it! This place blows the zoo away. Not only do you get a tour guide teaching you about the cats, but you get to see them as such close range. The cats are accustomed to human interactions, so they tend to be more interested in you, not shying away and hiding. The male lion that is housed with the white female Bengal tiger was the best part. You can hear, as well as feel the vibrations when he lets out his growl…simply amazing!
The fee to enter goes toward their foundation in providing the necessities that the animals need. Can’t wait to go back. « show less
I would give Big Cat Rescue ten stars if I could. Calling Big Cat Rescue a “zoo” is a disservice. It’s a sanctuary that rescues wild cats, whether in the wild (native Florida bobcats and panthers injured are lucky to make it here), or previously captive big cats. I get their quarterly newsletter and every issue has a heartbreaking, but ultimately uplifting, story about an exotic cat they rescued from a carnival, circus group, fur farm, drug dealer, “mall photo” operation, etc. I’ve donated to this group several times and it’s great to see so many donors listed on their newsletter.
And the tour is wonderful. $25 is pricey? Really? Knowing full well that this is a non profit organization and the tour prices go to feed and shelter these incredible creatures? Anyone complaining about the tour price here should visit the Baltimore Aquarium. Then we’ll talk.
I love cats of all shapes and sizes but anyone with an interest in animals should visit Big Cat Rescue. It’s worth the trip to Tampa just to visit this place. You’ll get closer to big cats than you would in any zoo–and the cats are clearly treated with tender loving care. The bobcat and lynx area allows you to actually touch and pet those smaller wild cats. Their behavior will remind you of your own pet cat.
Why anyone would give Big Cat Resue less than five stars is beyond me. Yes, the animals are in cages, but what do you expect? For them to run wild? These are animals that were rescued from utterly dire situations. Any cat that makes it to Big Cat Resue is a lucky cat. « show less
Big Cat Rescue is another must see if you are visiting the Tampa area. Where else can you get a really close up view of a wide variety of wild cats. It’s awesome. Ok, I will admit, I may be a litle biased towards my feline friends, but you should check it out for yourself.
This sanctuary is run by deadicated people who take care of wild cats that have mostly been abandond by people who thought these cats could actually be pets. Other big cats have been rescued from abusive situations. While they were all really cool, a few stand out because of their stories. One cool little desert/sand cat was rescued in Iraq. This little guy is like Napoleon on speed. Then there was one of the largest lionesses I have ever seen. She was used by drug dealers to protect their crap. Unfortunately, because she was chained up for so long, this beautiful cat can’t fully enjoy the use of those extra long legs. Also, unforgetable was a massive male tiger who was kept in small confines while he was growing up, which left his legs shorter than normal. Now he looks like solid little/big tank with those short legs on a huge body. He apparently was depressed for a very long time, but his female tigress he was paired with finally brought him out of depression.
There is quite a lot to see, and our guide was great. Recommend you go when the weather in Florida is nicest…from November through April.