Be The Voice for Animals and Stop the Abuse of Captive Wildlife

Take a stand by advocating for legislation that protects captive wildlife, and help to end the cruelty that has been going on for far too long. You have the power to save the lives of animals who have been abused and neglected and ensure public safety. Become an animal advocate and make your voice heard.
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The Big Cat Public Safety Act - H.R. 263/S.1210
(December 6, 2022) - Breaking News! The U.S. Senate just passed The Big Cat Public Safety Act (H.R. 263/S.1210)! This has been a long time coming and is a BIG win for the animals, as we have championed this type of legislation for more than a decade. Before now, no federal legislation existed to protect big cats from the cruelty of private ownership, cub petting and exploitation. The Big Cat Public Safety Act, once signed into law by the president, will ban keeping big cats as pets and ban public contact with big cats.
advocate for vital legislation
The Big Cat Public Safety Act - H.R. 263/S.1210
The Big Cat Public Safety Act would end the private possession of big cats as pets, end cub petting, and limit exhibitors to those who do not repeatedly violate the law. It bans private ownership and breeding of big cats with limited exemptions. This federal bill passed in the U.S. House of Representatives during the tail end of the 116th session of Congress (December 2020) with bipartisan majority. However, that session of Congress is now over, and that means we need to start again in this new Congressional session (117th) to get momentum going once again.

The Big Cat Public Safety Act (H.R. 263) was reintroduced in the 117th session of Congress on January 11, 2021 by Representatives Mike Quigley (D-IL) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA). If passed, it would prohibit private ownership of big cats and restrict direct physical contact between the public and big cats, putting an end to "cub petting" and the cruel breeding cycles on which these operations depend.
Call and email your U.S. representative now and urge them to push for the passage of this crucial piece of legislation. Click here for a sample letter you can use or customize.
H.R. 2863/S.2121 - The Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Acts
On Tuesday, May 21, H.R. 2863 - The Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA) was reintroduced in Congress by Representatives Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) and David Schweikert (R-AZ), and championed by our friends at Animal Defenders International (ADI), the bipartisan bill has been signed by 16 cosponsors so far. With the passage of TEAPSPA, Congress aims to amend the Animal Welfare Act to restrict the use of exotic and wild animals in traveling circuses and other traveling acts.

On July 15, 2019 the companion bill was introduced in the Senate - S.2121 - The Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection ACT (TEAPSPA) by Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and referred to the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry.


Due to severe confinement, lack of free exercise, and the restriction of natural behaviors, animals used in traveling circuses suffer and are prone to health, behavioral, and psychological problems. Studies show that traveling circuses compromise the welfare of wild animals, who are confined in small spaces, deprived of their physical and social needs, and spend excessive amounts of time shut in trailers and train cars. Circus animals are often seen behaving abnormally under a high state of anxiety - rocking, swaying, and pacing, all indicating that they are in distress and not coping with their environment. Ultimately, these conditions present a public safety risk and deny these animals the right to live without suffering.

The mobile and transitory nature of traveling circuses makes it difficult for authorities to enforce federal animal health, safety, and welfare laws and violations. Congress has a responsibility to protect the welfare of animals and ensure public safety. A prohibition on the use of exotic and wild animals in traveling circuses is proportionate, responsible, and the least expensive solution to this problem. Supporting the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act will ensure:
  • Wild and exotic animals are protected
  • Public safety hazards are prevented
  • Taxpayer money is saved
In the US, over 90 jurisdictions have full/partial bans on wild/exotic animal circus acts, and in December 2018 New Jersey and Hawaii both passed statewide bans. A number of other states are also considering bans. Now we have a chance to stop circus suffering nationwide, but we need you to speak out for the animals.

Click here for a sample letter and instructions on how to look up your legislator to urge them to support this important bill!

Click here for a sample letter and instructions on how to look up your Senators to urge them to support this important bill!
Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance
Newly formed in 2017, the Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance was created to strengthen the big cat sanctuary community by offering an annual workshop for sanctuaries to come together to learn new methods in animal care, discuss veterinary issues and treatment, and cover financial topics such as fundraising strategies and sustainability. In addition, its offers support to member sanctuaries, as well as sanctuaries interested in obtaining BCSA membership, on ways to overall improve their standards of care.

The BCSA will speak as one unified voice on the issues of the exotic pet trade, big cats used in entertainment and other areas of abuse. The BCSA works towards the day when sanctuaries are no longer needed because the ownership and commercial exploitation of wild cats has been eliminated.
Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries
Lions Tigers & Bears holds the highest accreditation possible from the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS), a non-profit group which provides certification for animal sanctuaries, rescue centers, and rehabilitation centers across the world.

The sole purpose of GFAS is to ensure that these animals receive the highest standards of care during rescue, rehabilitation, and for the rest of their lives.

GFAS is the only globally recognized organization for certifying that a facility meets specific Standards of Excellence and recognizes those as a true "sanctuary." As such, Lions Tigers & Bears is proud to be certified by GFAS as we exceed their standards of care and excellence.

In addition, Bobbi Brink has been honored with the prestigious Carole Noon Award for Sanctuary Excellence, which is awarded annually to an individual who "embodies and puts into practice the GFAS philosophy of vision, dedication, and excellence in animal care at sanctuaries."

To learn more about the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries Standards of Excellence visit their website.
American Sanctuary Association
Lions Tigers & Bears is an active member of the American Sanctuary Association. We are accredited by the Association, which requires member animal sanctuaries to comply with a variety of high quality animal care standards and housing requirements. Besides a detailed application process, in which organizational qualifications such as financial stability, fundraising procedures, board oversight, permits and licenses, organizational bylaws, educational materials and veterinary references are reviewed, the Association also visits all applicant animal sanctuaries to assure that their facilities and animal care merit the American Sanctuary Association endorsement. In addition, ASA member sanctuaries are not allowed to breed, sell or trade animals, or use them for commercial purposes.
Bear Care Group
Lions Tigers & Bears is a proud member of the Bear Care Group. The Bear Care Group is committed to creating and enhancing communication, cooperation and education among international bear care professionals by organizing bear care programs, publications and resources focused on advancing and sharing information on bear behavior, husbandry, enrichment, training, veterinary care and other topics to further global bear welfare and conservation efforts.
Captive Bear Summit 2017
Lions Tigers & Bears' Founder and Director, Bobbi Brink, traveled to Washington, D.C. in November 2017 to meet with fellow animal sanctuary leaders and professionals from across the country for the Captive Bear Summit.

The focus of this summit was to identify the most severe conditions suffered by captive bears in the United States today, including:
  • Sensory-deprived confinement of bear pits
  • Substandard enclosures with concrete-only substrates and inadequate space
  • Lack of environmental enrichment to allow for natural behaviors such as denning, submerging in water, and rubbing against logs or boulders
  • Traveling bear shows and roadside zoos
  • Exploitative activities such as cub petting and photo opportunities
  • Unnecessary and indiscriminant breeding

The summit also served as a discussion forum on ways to enact positive change by:

  • Urging the USDA and state and local authorities to adhere to strict permitting requirements for facilities that have multiple, ongoing violations.
  • Strengthening and expanding the network of sanctuaries accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries and Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
  • Promoting a broad call to action by engaging the public's compassion for the plight of these animals.
Annual Big Cat Conference
Established in 2013, this conference is an annual gathering of reputable sanctuaries dedicated to ending the captive wildlife crisis in the United States.

The most recent conference in 2017 included 35 leaders from 16 U.S. sanctuaries and representatives from International Fund for Animal Welfare, Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries, and the Humane Society of the United States came together to network and share best practices. Topics included habitat design, veterinary care, sustainability, crisis management, and advocacy to benefit captive wild cats.
Take Action for Lila the Tiger
Lila the tiger has been living a dismal life at the Waccatee Zoological Farm in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina for years. She is frequently seen pacing back and forth in her small enclosure, and now she's suffering from an apparent medical condition that has left her almost completely bald. Urge the owner of Waccatee Zoological Farm in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to accept the support of accredited sanctuaries willing to provide lifetime care to their ailing animals.
Animals at G.W. Zoo NEED HELP
Lions Tigers & Bears has reached out to the USDA and the Garvin County Sheriff's Department in Oklahoma to offer support to help the animals at G.W. Zoo (yes - that G.W. Zoo...from Tiger King). We are urging officials to investigate and take action, after photos and videos by zoo visitors show animals is grave condition, members of the public (including a child) breaching safety barriers and coming into direct contact with a tiger and a cougar, and a young lion scaling a fence and attempting to escape. These incidences raise serious concern for public safety. Multiple violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and animals in dire need of medical attention are also evident.
TAKE ACTION - File a complaint with USDA APHIS & Sign our petition!
What You Need to Know About Tiger King
The Netflix docuseries, Tiger King, has taken the internet by storm, sending shockwaves and loads of memes across the interweb, all while rising to the ranks of the #1 series on the streaming service. However, the docuseries fell short in its depiction of the reality that captive big cats endure when exploited for profit in the U.S.
Stop Bear Exhibition at New York State Fair
Bears are being exhibited and used for entertainment at the New York State Fair now through Monday, September 2nd. Will you join us in contacting the organizer of this event to raise your voice for these animals? Instituting a policy against hosting exotic animal performances and exhibitions is a matter of public safety and animal welfare. Reaching out to organizers, can help prevent animal exhibitions from attending the fair in future years. Please take a few minutes to contact Troy Waffner, Director of the New York State Fair and Governor Andrew Cuomo to let them know that allowing wild and exotic animal exhibitors is NOT OK.
Stop Animal Exhibitor at Antelope Valley Fair
(August 18, 2019) A tiger, serval cub, wallaby, and other exotic animals are currently being exhibited and exploited at the Antelope Valley Fair in Lancaster, CA through August 25th. Take action and urge fair management to enact a policy against hosting big cat and exotic animal displays to protect public safety and animal welfare. Exhibition of tigers, an endangered species, and other exotic animals such as servals, lynx and wallabies is irresponsible, inappropriate and an urgent matter of public safety and animal welfare.

Please take a few minutes to either CALL or EMAIL the General Manager of Antelope Valley Fair and Events Center to let them know that allowing wild and exotic animal exhibitors is NOT OK.

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