Can I Pet a Tiger? – An Outside Perspective

14/05/10 0 COMMENTS

I volunteered to do some work for the Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary because I was so impressed at how amazing and selfless everyone was. They truly want what is best for their animals and any other animals they get phone calls over. To do my work I needed to learn about everything- the habitat, the people and all the animals individually.

I was like everyone else at first – the tigers are beautiful! The tigers, lions and liger all behave like my cats in some ways. They look snuggly and everyone I talk to wants to pet one…it seems so simple, but petting tigers or lions is not a safe thing.

Don’t get me wrong, these animals can be sweet and they all have their own distinct personality, but underneath the beauty and the personality they are what they have always been, predators. They are built like predators, so even if they are just playing with you their claws and their teeth can do considerable damage. It doesn’t have to be intentional. When tigers play with each other they can bite and claw their pals and nothing happens, but humans are not built the same.

Can I Pet a Tiger?

I will tell you right now that the Big Cat Habitat is not going to risk you getting hurt just to pet a tiger. There are very few staff members that go in with tigers and lions and those that do have trained tigers for a decade or more. They know tigers so well they actually think like them. More importantly, the big cats trust them. The support staff that feed and care for the tigers also have a close relationship with them, but they are not reaching their hands in and petting them. It just is not worth the risk.

Respect

Kay, her son Clayton and the entire staff are always talking about respecting the cats. As I said above, the cats know the people that  take care of them, but they don’t know visitors.  It would make them very uncomfortable to have random people touching them all time. People don’t like having people they don’t know come up and touch them; neither do the cats.

As beautiful as they are, it is important to keep in mind that they were created to be predators and that is what they are. They do not have to attack you to hurt you. Tigers are just too dangerous to play with. On the other hand, being able to look into their eyes is a rewarding experience and one I value deeply. If you have not had the chance to look a tiger, lion or liger in the eye I encourage you to visit the Big Cat Habitat or a safe and animal loving habitat in your local area.

Melissa

Summer Camps are WELCOME at the Big Cat!

13/05/10 0 COMMENTS

Summer camps, you can call us and schedule a time to have your summer camp kids come by and see the animals. If you are interested please call us at 941-371-6377. Our rates are very affordable!

See our Big Cats!

Our Tigers

Our Liger

Our Lion

Tiger Tongues

02/05/10 3 COMMENTS

Tony the Tiger Playing

29/04/10 3 COMMENTS

Learn more about Tony the Tiger.

Clayton and Handsome

29/04/10 1 COMMENTS

Here is Clayton hanging out by the cat pool with Handsome the Lion.

Mia Liger – Baby Pictures

29/04/10 8 COMMENTS

Mia is our Liger. She has been beautiful from the start and we wanted to share some of our precious memories, Mia’s baby pictures.

Cheetahs – Built to Be the Fastest Running Animal

25/04/10 0 COMMENTS

In this video you will see how they Cheetah is built and why it can run so fast.

BBC Reporter Goes Into a Lion’s Den – Video

25/04/10 0 COMMENTS

Often people see people like us touching lions and they assume they are just big, cuddly cats. They are not. They are predators, but they can build a relationship with humans. In fact, the founder of Big Cat Habitat, Kay Rosaire, was saved by a lion during a tiger attack.

That being said, you can’t just come out and touch them and assume all will go well. What happens at the end of this video is a perfect example of why all humans need to have a healthy respect for lions and keep in mind that they are predators.

What is a Siberian Tiger?

25/04/10 0 COMMENTS

Siberian tigers are considered the world’s largest cats. They are also known as the Amur, Manchurian, Altaic, Korean, North China or Ussuri tigers (Wikipedia). Siberians are considered the biggest of the eight recent tiger subspecies. They can grow up to 13 feet in length and weigh up to 900 lbs.

Wild Siberians live in Southeast corner of Russia in the Sikhote-Alin mountain range east of the Amur River and there are some living in China and North Korea.

There are 400 to 500 Siberian tigers left living in the wild. Poaching for fur and for their body parts that are used in Traditional Chinese Medicine have caused a major loss in population. Is is against the law in China to use Siberian parts for medicine, but despite the laws reports say that in 1991 alone, one-third of the Siberian tiger population was killed to meet the demand for their bones and other parts used in the practice of Chinese Medicine.

Below are some videos about the Siberian tigers. Please keep in mind the money spent to monitor these creatures. It is crucial that we save this species. Learn more at Wikipedia.

Warning on Part 5. There is a dead tiger and this is not a video for children.

Vanna and Barry White!

10/04/10 3 COMMENTS

Here you can see Clayton taking Vanna and Barry White for a walk (Clayton chose the names:-).

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