Tsavo – In Memory


The Wildcat Sanctuary has accepted nine cats as part of a big cat rescue from the Wild Animal Orphanage (WAO) in Texas after they closed down.

Kita, a tiger, and Tsavo, a lion, were originally rescued from a garage in Michigan. They both have had issues with ataxic hind quarters due to nutritional deficiencies but are very happy cats.

Thank you to Karen Berg who donated frequent flyer miles for Director Tammy Thies to fly to WAO and The Mahley Family Foundation and The Binky Foundation who each contributed $2,000 towards the placement of the nine WAO cats.

We still have work to do to find homes for all the the WAO animals, but I’m extremely grateful for everyone who has set aside their differences to ensure so many of these animals have another chance at life.

The WAO keepers and interim board have been amazing providing day-to-day care to all the animals with such little resources. They selflessly voted to close and place the animals when they knew it was in their best interest. Even the USDA, IFAW, ASA and GFAS are all working together to help as many animals as possible.


In Memory ~ November 2010

Tsavo, such a beautiful lioness had one of the greatest feline personalities TWS has ever seen. It is because of her love for life that made her passing so traumatic for the staff, vets and all of those who had the fortune of meeting her.

At The Wildcat Sanctuary, we spay and neuter our residents to prevent breeding, furthering our goal in ending the captive wildlife crisis. In addition, we spay and neuter to reduce the chances the cats will develop reproductive system cancers. We hope by doing this it will lengthen the life of the animal.

Tsavo was spayed 8 days prior to her passing. She was recovering well, until staff found that she had opened a small section of her sutures and damaged a portion of her intestine. The staff and vets immediately tended to Tsavo, performing surgery and providing intensive care.

While trying to stay optimistic, watching Tsavo’s condition was heart wrenching. We tried absolutely everything we could do for this poor girl, unfortunately it was not enough.

This tragedy has been one of the hardest things the staff and vets have had to cope with. It is hard to comprehend that this time our efforts to lengthen an animals’ life has actually contributed to her leaving us too soon. She may have only been with us for a couple of weeks, but seeing her silly expressions and goofy antics made us feel as though she’d been apart of our family for years.

We’ll always reminisce her running across her habitat to greet us as fast as she could, playing with her roommate Kita and making her funny noises. Remembering her joyful personality will help our tears slow and our hearts grow stronger.

Everyone that met this amazing girl fell in love immediately. Tsavo was a one-of-a-kind cat and will be missed dearly. She was a great reminder that the best things in life are often the simplest. It is for this we will be forever thankful for meeting Tsavo, even if we only knew her for such a short time.

“There is no pain so great as the memory of joy in present grief.” – Aeschylus