Timeline: IFAW’s Rescue Efforts to Save U.S. Big Cats in Crisis

To date, IFAW has been involved in the rescue and relocation of over 150 big cats, among many other wild animals in captivity such as bears and wolves. Most sanctuaries for mistreated or unwanted big cats are at, or near, capacity and many lack financial reserves for more than 1-3 months operating expenses. The reoccurring situation of failing and closing facilities continue to make matters worse; as the burden falls on surviving sanctuaries which are often not equipped to keep taking on more animals as the U.S. big cat population grows. IFAW’s rescue team works closely with many bona fide facilities by collaborating on rescues, animal care standards, and sanctuary sustainability and stewardship.

Unwanted big cats who cannot go to true sanctuaries from owners, breeders, and exhibitors often end up warehoused, sent to other exhibitors, or sold to other individuals, further exacerbating the animal welfare crisis and threat to human health and safety. There is a vital need for federal legislation, such as the Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act, to finally put an end to this cruel and burdensome practice by ending the private breeding and ownership of big cats in the U.S. To learn more about this legislation, click here.

How you can help:

Get InvolvedSend an email to your U.S. Representative using our web form and say you support the passage of the “Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act.”

Donate: Your gift will help support initiatives that protect animals and people. Donate online or call 1 (800) 932-4329.