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Carolina Tiger Rescue is a 501(c)3 nonprofit wildlife sanctuary whose mission is saving and protecting wild cats in captivity and in the wild.

 

It started with a dull coat.

Then came sores, weight loss and odd behavior.

Kaela Tiger had to eventually be separated from her brother Rajah upon Carolina Tiger Rescue keepers realizing that the 13-year-old tiger was sick.

In May 2015, Kaela was diagnosed with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, which meant she wasn’t producing the enzymes required to digest food. In addition to the folic acid and B-12 supplements Kaela was already on, the staff began giving her beef pancreas to break down the food and absorb the nutrients.

Still, they needed answers.

Kaela on Aug. 16 underwent exploratory surgery to collect biopsies of her gastrointestinal tract for a closer look, and Carolina Tiger vet Dr. Angela Lassiter performed the procedure. From the first sedation to the time Kaela woke up took about five hours. The tiger had blood work done earlier this year, leading the staff to adjust her supplements.  

Carolina Tiger keepers expected GI lymphoma, but the results will take a couple of weeks. The surgery, however, did reveal some irregular discoloration on areas of her intestines. EPI is an illness they’d seen before.

Kaela is smart tiger who is very food-motivated. She is beloved around the sanctuary because her rescue reversed an eight-year drought.

She arrived in January 2005 after being found on the side of a rural road near Charlotte; she was 6 months old. Though Kaela’s roots are unknown, Kaela’s story is a direct result of the lack of legislation: North Carolina is one of five states where it is legal to own non-native species.

In North Carolina, it is legal to own a lion, tiger or other wild cats, making them too easily-obtainable. People who get them as pets later realize it isn’t a good idea.  

Kaela is currently about 400 pounds. She and Rajah were known as “The Cubs.”

The staff, volunteers and other members of the Carolina Tiger community hope the procedure will offer the answers they’ve sought for months and wishes Kaela a speedy recovery!

About Carolina Tiger Rescue

Carolina Tiger Rescue is a 501(c)3 nonprofit wildlife sanctuary whose mission is saving and protecting wild cats in captivity and in the wild.

Carolina Tiger Rescue

1940 Hanks Chapel Rd.
Pittsboro, NC 27312
(919) 542-4684
(919) 542-4454
info@carolinatigerrescue.org

Wildlife should be in the Wild

Rescue

Education

  • We believe the ideal home for wildlife is in the wild.
  • We believe it is critical to conserve their native habitats.
  • We believe wild animals should not be kept as pets.
  • We believe captive breeding should ONLY be done in accordance with Species Survival plans.
  • We believe all wild animals, both captive and in their native habitats, deserve to be treated with respect and not exploited for entertainment and commercial purposes.

Visit Carolina Tiger Rescue

Tiger at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Public Tours

Twilight Tours

Coming out for a tour is a great way to learn more about the animals that call Carolina Tiger Recue home. We offer many different types of tours.  Public tours are great for adults and families. Twilight tours are for adults only (18 years of age and older). Tiger Tales are a perfect option if you want to bring out really young children. Find the tour that is right for you and enjoy a walk through the sanctuary. 

For all tours, tickets must be purchased in advance.

Have Fun Learning at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Field Trips

Field Trips

Virtual Field Trips link

Virtual Field Trips

Education is key to our mission.  We enjoy teaching “kids” of all ages!  Our field trips, both virtual and onsite, are ideal for groups of kids.  Our “Kid for a Day” Adult Camp provides a unique learning opportunity while allowing adults to channel their inner child.  While all of these opportunities are structured differently, in the end we want everyone to walk away knowing more about the animals we care for and what they can do to help protect them.

Our Rescues
Bobcat at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
BOBCATS

Caracal at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
CARACALS

Coatimundi at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
COATIMUNDIS

Cougar at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
COUGARS

Kinkajou at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
KINKAJOUS

In Memoriam
Leopard at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
LEOPARDS

Lion at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
LIONS

Ocelot at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
OCELOTS

Serval at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
SERVALS

Tiger at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Learn about
TIGERS

Animals
Games
Activities
Keeper Stripes

Get involved at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Individual volunteering at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Individual Volunteering

Group volunteering at Carolina Tiger Rescue

Group Volunteering

There are so many ways to be a part of Carolina  Tiger Rescue.  Individual volunteers are able to help in many aspects of our work, including animal care, tour guides, construction, and gift shop assistance.  Work groups come from community groups, colleges, work places, and more!  It’s a great way to spend a day and it helps care for the cats.

Ways to Support Carolina Tiger Rescue

Donate to Carolina Tiger Rescue

Donate

Big Cat Dinner Club Information

Big Cat Dinner Club

Whether it’s a monthly donation or a one-time gift, a symbolic animal adoption, a gift to the Big Cat Dinner Club, or any other kind of donation, your contribution to Carolina Tiger Rescue goes straight to work helping to save wild cats in need.  Don’t see what you are looking for, our development staff can help you find a meaningful way to support the cats!