Tampa — Three cats from Ohio have a new home in Florida after the Big Cat Rescue welcomed them to its sanctuary on Tuesday morning.
The Tampa rescue organization's enclosure is now home to 6-year-old caracal cats Cyrus and Chaos and 2-year-old serval cat Zucari. The cats were owned illegally by a Ohio woman who bred hybrid felines, the rescue said. Caracal cats are wild cats native to Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia and India. Serval cats are found in Africa and resemble a leopard.
The two caracals lived in a basement but had access to a small enclosure outside, rescuers said. The serval was kept in an outdoor dog kennel among two dozen hybrid cats, the rescue said.
On Monday, the cats were sedated for a basic exam: they were vaccinated, given microchips and had their blood drawn. Then early Tuesday, they had made it on a truck to the Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, where workers were ready unload them from their cages and allow them to explore their new homes.
In total, the sanctuary has more than 80 bigs cats, such as lions, tigers bobcats and cougars. Most often the cats are abused, orphaned, rescued from being made into fur coats or retired from a performing act.
Information on how to visit the Big Cat Rescue is available at bigcatrescue.org.