Shanti Deva


Shanti Deva and her pride came to the sanctuary from New York’s Catskill Game Farm in 2006. She was 11 years old at the time.  It was just before Christmas when they began auctioning off 950 animals to the highest bidders, making national news.

Many worried some of the animals would wind up in the hands of unscrupulous dealers. Or that animals, such as deer or goats, would go to people who run ‘canned shoot’ operations where hunters pay to shoot fenced-in animals.

Wildlife Watch intervened with the big cats, wanting to make sure they went to a safe place. They contacted us and we scrambled to prepare space for them in the dead of winter.

Where the Animals Went: The End of the Catskill Game Farm

Life at the Sanctuary

Shanti Deva’s pride included female lioness Asha and male lion Aslan. Yet Shanti was the alpha of their pride. She was always the most adventurous and is still the first to check out new enrichment and talk to new caretakers and interns.

She loves to kick back and relax, while chatting it up with anyone who passes by. Most mornings and evenings are filled with Shanti caroling to her neighboring tiger friends. Even with her pride gone, she’s never felt out of place with all of her tiger and caretaker buddies.

Things really changed for her in the winter of 2018, though, when seven lions arrived from Argentina. Now, Shanti’s roars were being answered and the sanctuary was filled with that beautiful sound again. And Shanti Deva was no longer the oldest lion here, but will always be our queen!

How You Can Help

Our sponsor program goes a long way in supporting geriatric care for cats like Shanti Deva. Would you like to help by becoming her sponsor parent?

Or even a one time donation to help with her care would be so helpful. It’s easy to do using the buttons at the top of this page.  Thank you for caring about her, too.




Pine County Sanctuary Bears Burden of Big Cat Boom – Star Tribune Article – 1/7/2007

Caring for the Catskill Game Farm Cats– Wildlife Watch Binocular- Spring 2007

Catskill Game Farm Cat Update – Wildlife Watch Binocular – Winter 2007