Sebastian is the second largest animal at Carolina Tiger Rescue.  He weighs 475 pounds!  Though Sebastian is the largest lion in the sanctuary and was the largest in his pride, he would let Sheba, his old enclosure-mate, boss him around.  Sheba passed on July 19, 2019.  Sebastian is a pretty laid-back lion who enjoys napping in the sun and sometimes is too lazy to even get up and eat.  Sebastian loves to destroy boxes and will often lounge on them to flatten them down as far as they will go!

Born January 1, 2002
Rescued November 12, 2010

How Sebastian Came to the Sanctuary

Sebastian was originally used in a haunted house in Texas. He, along with tigers, bears, and wolves, was used as part of the décor in the haunted house. His owner died prematurely and left his animals in his parents' care and they decided not to keep the big cats and bears and sent the animals to the Wild Animal Orphanage (WAO) in Texas. WAO shut down in 2010 and over 300 animals had to be rehomed. Carolina Tiger Rescue rescued ten animals, including three lions and seven tigers.


Sebastian is typically a laid-back lion who loves to spend his days sleeping. He loved to let Sheba, his old enclosure-mate, run the show and would just follow her lead. Typically, the male lion is the dominant one in a pride. However, due to him being neutered, Sebastian was second in command to Sheba.


Sebastian is known for his large size. He is the largest of all our lions at Carolina Tiger Rescue, weighing in at almost 500 pounds. He does not have his mane because he is neutered. When a male lion is neutered, they lose their mane because they lose their ability to make testosterone.

Where in Sanctuary

Sebastian lives on tour on Oak Hill and is flanked on one side by Roman and Reina Lion and on the other side by India, Carolina, and Caprichio Tiger.

Wild Animals in Entertainment

Wild animals, like Sebastian, that end up in entertainment rarely lead a life of luxury. Sebastian was used in a haunted house in Texas for the first part of his life. We are unsure of what his role in the haunted house was, but we can be certain it was not a safe environment for Sebastian. Wild animals in entertainment are often mistreated, underfed, and overworked. These are animals that are meant to be living in natural habitats, like on the savannas of Africa, rather than on a sound stage surrounded by loud noises, bright lights, and lots of people.

Carolina Tiger Rescue is against all forms of wild animals in entertainment. With the technology that is around today, it is difficult for us to see why real wild animals need to be used when the computer generated images of them are so life-like and do not provide a dangerous environment for the animal or the people around them. In the movie Life of Pi, a real tiger was used for several scenes. This tiger almost drowned on set. These animals are unpredictable and deserve to be respected as wild animals.

Panthera leo

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

Wildlife should be in the Wild



  • 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.

Bobcat at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Caracal at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Coatimundi at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Cougar at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Kinkajou at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Lion at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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NGSD at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Porcupine at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Raccoon at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Red Wolf at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Red Wolves
Serval at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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Tiger at Carolina Tiger Rescue
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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.