Big Cat Rescue provides an awesome service for big cats that, sadly, is more necessary now than ever. Big cats deserve to live in the wild, but there are so many in the hands of private citizens that are abused and neglected. BCR helps these animals and gives them a home for the rest of their lives, complete with plenty of food, enrichment, vet care, and love. BCR also plays an important role in advocacy for big cats, trying to help them in all areas. The world would be a much worse place without the staff and volunteers at Big Cat Rescue. I visited them in November 2014, and I wish I lived closer so I could visit over and over. To see these amazing animals is a rare treat, and to see them healthy and happy after what many of them have been through is nothing short of a miracle.
As much as I have loved Big Cat Rescue ever since I first came across them on YouTube, I promised myself I would not write a review before actually visiting there. Now I finally have and it was a real dream come true.
I took part to Wildcat Walkabout on 1st of October in 2016 as a volunteer. I handed out tickets for the visitors, welcomed them and explained how they could support different projects with their ”conservation bucks”. Before that, on the previous day, I got the pleasure to have a look at the sanctuary itself. I got to meet the cats and all the hard-working interns, volunteers and staff members. Those are the nicest people you’ll ever meet, I can assure you. They work tirelessly to make sure the cats are doing well and everything is how it should be. I had long chats with Mrs. Baskin as well and she answered any questions I might have had.
It was amazing to see the Vacation Rotation Enclosure and Small Cat Funcation. Never have I seen such huge enclosures in zoos or animal parks. Their normal enclosures are filled with platforms, dens, pools, trees and grass; all the natural elements to make the cats feel at home. No concrete or pebbles, but pure soil under their paws.
I got to see the food preparation, which greatly impressed me. I already knew each cat has their unique diet, but to see it in person and follow the interns filling the food buckets with such care only enforced my respect for them and their work. I was also impressed by how carefully BCR was planning their event. There were 90 people helping on that day, mostly to make sure no one disturbed the cats or go beyond safety wire. Cats always come first there, no matter which day or event is underway.
I was introduced to intern housing, too. Big Cat Rescue does such fantastic work with how they’re doing their very best to be environmentally friendly. They use solar energy, they recycle their waste and they have specific instructions of their recycling policy in each of the trailers. If only every facility/company/business/organization chose to support green values as strongly as Big Cat Rescue does. After studying sustainable development I was prepared to make notes and request things to improve, but I quickly realized there was nothing I could have suggested to be done better. It was already beyond my expectations.
Big Cat Rescue has always been a huge inspiration for me. They’ve taught me that even one person can make a BIG difference and that one should never be afraid to speaking up for someone who has no voice to speak for themselves. It’s thanks to people at Big Cat Rescue I volunteered in South Africa, took part to Global March Against Canned Hunting and became a vegetarian. Without them I probably still wouldn’t have a clue how abusive cub petting is, what tiger farms are and that there are such awful places for animals in the world. They have opened my eyes in every possible way and for that I will always support them and their cause.
I have seen with my very own eyes how things at their facility work and how tirelessly they are all working for a better future for both people and animals. Thank you. I hope to return with my spouse one day in the future. He was greatly disappointed he had to stay at work while I got to experience this piece of heaven.
Big Cat Rescue in Tampa Florida is a must visit if you enjoy seein the cats being treated so beautifully. Most of the tour I felt like I was in the cage and the cats were roaming from. Great attention to detail regarding their well being, attentive trainers and beautiful enclosures so the cats are comfortable. Great learning experience too.
Highly recommend visiting this place. I have bee twice and intend to visit again. Definitely want to be a Trainer for a Day.
I visited Big Cat Rescue a few years ago and saw the amazing way they care for these beautiful animals and have been a supporter ever since! It's clear to see that they TRULY love doing what they do.
I have been going to BCR every year since 2002. On the tour, they give a history of a lot of the cats and why big cats should NEVER be a pet. My favourite thing is hearing about the cats' likes and dislikes. I work in a high stress customer service job and when I can't take it anymore I pull up you tube and watch the cats be cats. The stress melts away. It is a place that should be on everyone's list.
I have visited big cat rescue twice, and I will say, hands down this was the best experience! I've learned so much. I used to wish I would come across a cub petting event because of my love for tigers I just wanted to be able to pet one, now you couldn't pay me enough to do it. BCR is so for giving these awesome animals a great life that come from horrible people. I hope that everyone that visits, gets the same passion for saving these precious animals from private homes and zoo's. Thank you BCR for all you do.
I had the most wonderful time with staff, and learned so much
Thank you for taking such good care and giving an environment adapted to all of your friends at Big Cat Rescue.
actually, i am a former volunteer, only left because of distance of commute. I volunteered for 2+ years. Big Cat Rescue does an amazing job not only rescuing big cats but providing education to the public on what a true sanctuary is and how they can support and protect cats. They also provide support to other non-profits and all in all this is one of the most effective organizations i have ever been a part of.
My husband and I toured and volunteered at Big Cat Rescue on our honeymoon trip. It was magical and inspiring. They do great work there and we hope to bring or kids there so they can experience it too.
We have done both the Keeper's Tour and the Feeding Tour, and both were wonderful! Highly recommend visiting BCR.