It’s no secret that humans are fascinated with lions, tigers, and various big cats. They’re magnificent creatures. However, just because these animals look sweet and cuddly doesn’t mean that they make for good pets. They are wild animals and will act as so.
While that might be easy for most of us to understand, it doesn’t change that the exotic pet industry is worth $15 billion a year. In the United States alone, the big cat population is estimated to be up to 10,000 animals – 7,000 of those are tigers, meaning that more tigers are in captivity than in the wild. If that isn’t alarming enough, only 6% of the big cats in the US are in reputable facilities like a zoo or sanctuary/refuge.
Why This Is A Problem
Wild animals are, well, meant to live in the wild. And despite this common knowledge, it doesn’t change that people will still find a way to own a big cat and engage in irresponsible breeding and inbreeding. As a result, numerous unwanted and unhealthy big cats have been produced and suffer from shrunken hearts, shortened tendons, club feet, kidney ailments, deformed faces, and contorted necks.
Taking care of a healthy big cat takes thousands of dollars a month to feed and take care of regular vet maintenance. Imagine the costs associated for animals born with the above ailments. It’s no surprise that these animals are neglected and abused.
How To Help Stop The Exotic Pet Crisis
So, how can you help? Be part of the solution.
1. Don’t buy exotic animals
If a wild animal can’t survive in the wild due to health issues or being born in captivity, let a reputable facility equipped to take care of the animal step in to help.
2. Educate Your Community
If you do know someone who owns an exotic pet, let them know of the dangers to not only the animal, but to themselves. According to Born Free USA, between 1990–2021, more than 1,300 exotic pets escaped in the United States, leading to 523 incidents and 91 deaths.
3. Don’t Go To Live Animal Shows
The sweet animals you see in these shows don’t always live a life of tranquility that they deserve because they are used for pure entertainment. In some cases, they are abused from the minute that they are made “safe” for the public by being declawed and defanged.
4. Donate to ethical and regulated animal refuges such as PrideRock.
At PrideRock, we provide permanent sanctuary for mistreated and unwanted wild animals, and a majority of our animals have come from circuses, people’s pets, and other facilities. We’re able to keep giving these animals the life they so well deserve by donations, public support and volunteers.
Help Us Continue Our Mission on 9.22.22
This year, PrideRock officially turns 30, and in 30 years we have conducted rescues from California to West Virginia and have housed more than 70 animals. Donors like you have helped us with our mission and we so value your support.
That said, we need your help! Our biggest fundraiser of the year, North Texas Giving Day, is approaching and we need your support to help us continue our mission to aid in the prevention of animal cruelty. To keep our refuge running smoothly, we need to make sure our facility stays updated and maintained.
This year for NTGD, we are looking to raise funds for a new asphalt road into our facility, a new meat haul trailer and the repair of various pens and our wolf barn.
It’s our goal to raise $30,000 to celebrate 30 years of forever changing the lives of animals that have called PrideRock home! To help us do that, please donate here.