We took a field trip today with our homeschool group (North Raleigh Homeschoolers) to the Carolina Tiger Rescue center in Pittsboro, NC. It was awesome! They stressed how these are all wild animals and they are firm with everyone, including staff, that there is not to be any petting or treating these animals as if they are pets. The animals are accustomed to humans but are not pets. Below are some photos from the Center. They have cats from private owners who could not care for these animals as well as from other centers/zoos that have gone under due to economic issues. There was even also one of the lions who had been the center of a show on Animal Planet. I forget the name of the show right now unfortunately.
We gathered indoors to get a brief explanation of the rules and safety tips. We also got to touch some pelts of animals that had died of natural causes. She explained that that was all the petting of animals that would be done. So, we got to feel the difference between a tiger's fur, a caracal's fur, and a "bear cat's" or a binturong's fur (which isn't even a cat).
Now some of the animal pics!
I recommend a visit to the Carolina Tiger Rescue Center in Pittsboro, NC if you live in the area. They do private tours, field trips and have open visits on the weekends. These cats are amazing! The staff is very knowledgeable and you are fairly up close to the animals. Take good walking shoes, sunscreen and bug spray though! Go visit!