Today, I went on a tour of Big Cat Rescue, a sanctuary for abused or abandoned exotic cats in Tampa, FL. I’ve been there before, but each time you go you have a different experience. They have 132 cats that come from all different situations – drug dealers who used them for protection, fur farms, circuses, so-called “educational” facilities that keep them in small cages and use them for profit, etc.. The cats are well taken care of in “cat-a-tats” that resemble their natural environment as much as possible. They can’t be released into the wild because they would not be able to survive. You can get pretty close to them, but not close enough to be harmed; in fact, no one there touches them for safety reasons.
It’s amazing to learn how some people actually think trying to domesticate a wild animal is a good idea. They will always be wild animals, no matter how tame they may seem (just look at Siegfried and Roy). They don’t belong in cages or in your home.
You should check it out. You can learn about them and watch videos on their web site: www.bigcatrescue.org. You can also sign up for their alert system to be notified of how you can make a difference in legislation to protect the cats.