Petee Ocelot


April 13, 1999

Born at
Carolina Tiger Rescue

Passed away
April 9, 2019

Petee’s Story

Petee was born as part of Carolina Tiger Rescue’s former breeding program. Carolina Tiger Rescue, formerly Carnivore Preservation Trust, was originally founded to breed keystone species in hopes of one day releasing them into a safe environment, but that day never came. The animals who were born here will remain at Carolina Tiger Rescue for the rest of their lives. Petee was one of our more social ocelots.  He loved to come up and greet tour guests and visitors, hoping they will have a treat or two for him.  Petee was a tough ocelot who once took on a copperhead and won!  At times, he would become possessive of his water dish, reminding volunteers that it is his and no one else can have it.  Petee often just hanging out when tour groups visited; he was a tour favorite because he enjoyed checking out his visitors as they tell him how handsome was.  

Petee’s Passing

April 10, 2019

For the past few weeks we have been keeping a very close eye on Petee Ocelot. His appetite had decreased and his coat condition had deteriorated. We knew that his age had not been kind to his kidneys and did everything that we could to help support his failing system. Unfortunately, that battle came to an end this week. Overnight his condition deteriorated quickly and we knew that the only humane option was to let him go. We completed his necropsy and found that he was in multiple organ failure.

Petee has been a star of the public tours for years. He may not always come up for the guest, but he could always be found lounging on his platforms.  While some of our ocelots are more wild, Petee was a pretty laid back older gentleman and was rarely bothered by much going on around him.  Like many of the cats, he loved to create Pawcassos and enjoyed any enrichment that had fun smells!  He particularly liked to rub on smelly perfumes and cologne such as Obsession (a crowd favorite among ocelots).

It’s hard to say goodbye to animals that some of us have known their entire lives or even our entire time at Carolina Tiger Rescue. It’s strange to think of the sanctuary without Petee. But as I look around, my heart is full with knowing that there are so many animals that get to call Carolina Tiger home. I know that every life that comes through the sanctuary gates, both human and wild alike, are changed for the better.


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.