Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Special Events at Safe Haven Rescue Zoo

Photo: Matthew B. Brown

Safe Haven Rescue Zoo is a wildlife sanctuary located in Imlay. We provide rehabilitative services and permanent placement for wildlife in need. We respond to assistance requests from state and federal agencies, law enforcement, veterinarians, and concerned citizens.

Many of our wild residents are former exotic pets. Several have come to Safe Haven as the result of major rescue efforts coordinated by agencies and sanctuaries nationwide.

Why do we put so much effort into our special events? While there are many reasons, we think Max, one of our rescued cougars, speaks volumes on the importance of bringing awareness to our organization.

Max’s Story:

The feel of the sun on my face, the earth beneath my paws, the tall grass swaying along my flank—these are the simple pleasures I never knew I was missing! The first ten years of my life were spent in a cramped and filthy 10 x 12 stall in a privately owned barn warehousing many other exotic cats just like me. For ten long years I could catch only a glimpse of the outside world, a hint of a fresh breeze, sometimes, through our single grimy window. Although a cougar can live twenty years or more, I had no expectation of that as I watched my fellow inmates languish and sometimes die. Dirty water, not enough food, no veterinary care, it took its toll on us. Sometimes we even lashed out at each other. If I stood on my hind legs to look out the window, I risked injury from my neighbor, a much larger and stronger African lion. Each lonely day passed like all the others—I paced my cramped quarters, I worried about my neighbors, I faced the high stall walls surrounding me and I wondered if there would be food today.

Photo: Matthew B. Brown
But I am one of the lucky ones, one of the survivors. Rescue came in time and now my life here at Safe Haven is beyond anything I could have imagined. I have room to run and play, to chase my own boomer ball at top speed, to pounce from hiding and scare my laughing caregivers, to dance through the grass and bask in the warmth of a sun so bright I have to squint my eyes. I have a healthy diet and endless fresh drinking water. I can rest well in the clean straw of my protected den – no more nightmares of the long arm of the lion next door reaching out towards me while I sleep! Oh, I still have lions for neighbors, but it is not at all the same. A safe and secure distance away, Kovu and Ifaw are interesting neighbors to watch and listen to. The sights and smells and sounds of Safe Haven, my new family of lions, tigers, servals, coyotes, foxes, bobcats, lynxes, and yes, even another cougar or two, are becoming comforting and familiar. We trade our stories quietly at night, a low trill exchanged between enclosures, a roar at past indignities, a growl at remembered hardship, the peaceful purr of thanks. We all remember and we are all grateful for a Safe Haven future full of joy and happiness.

Max was one of nine other cougars, nine African lions, and one tiger rescued from a Texas pole barn, discovered after the owner passed away from cancer. The cats were housed in 10 x 12 horse stalls with one single window—never going outside.  

Upcoming events that will help Max and his fellow Safe Haven residents:

Month of October
Location: Rapscallions Seafood House and Bar
Eat at Rapscallions during the month of October and mention Safe Haven when paying your bill. Twenty percent of the food portion of your tab will be donated to Safe Haven at the end of the month.

October 12, 2013
Tiger Dash!
Time 11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Location: Safe Haven (Imlay, NV)
Activities: 5k race/walk, vendors, enrichment demonstrations, guided tours of facility, lunch, and silent auction
Cost: varies from $10-25 per person for race; Vendors-$50
Must complete registration form: www.safehavenwildlife.com

November 2, 2013
Open House
Time:  2:00-6:00 p.m.
Location: Safe Haven (Imlay, NV)
Activities:  guided tours, enrichment demonstrations, hors d'oeurves and beverages.
Cost: FREE

November 17, 2013
Full Moon Tour
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Safe Haven (Imlay, NV)
Activity: Tour of facility and enrichment demonstrations
Cost: $15 for adults, $5 for kids 12 and younger (Advanced registration is required)

Safe Haven is a Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS) verified wildlife rescue sanctuary. GFAS collaborates with other US accredited animal rescue groups when a facility is shut down or in this case, animals discovered in need of immediate placement.  Safe Haven provides these "forever home" to abandoned and illegally owned exotics to allow them to finish their lives in dignity.

E-mail: safehavenwildlife1@gmail.com
Telephone: 775-538-7093

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