The Keeper Tour

Big Cat Rescue

Zerve Seller: BigCatRescue
Activity #4200
  • Take a tour of Big Cat Rescue & see the home of more than 100 panthers, lions & other cats that have been saved from abandonment!

  • Dinner at Big Cat Rescue is a bone crunching wild time you will never forget! Watch big cat keepers feed tigers, leopards & more!

  • A walking tour after dark... come experience the big cats at night! An experience to remember - an adrenaline rush to turn the tables!

  • Complete guided tour where children of ALL AGES can get up-close and learn about exotic cats and other animals!

Available Dates & Times Price Duration
All times listed are Eastern time zone
Gift Certificates:


Big Cat Rescue of Tampa, FL is excited to tell you about an opportunity that is sure to feed your beastly appetite for adventure. Our Big Cat Keeper Tour is the most exclusive behind the scenes experience you can find in the animal world that is respectful to the animals and safe for the guests. If you are an animal lover and want to see the inner workings of a real animal sanctuary, then this 2-hour experience is what you have been searching for.

No where else can you get this close, interact with such a wide variety of wild cats, and support a great cause at the same time.
The Keeper Tour includes:
  • Enrichment: You'll make toys and treats for the cats to stimulate an animals’ activity level and watch as keeper hands out what you’ve made. Observe the animals’ reactions as they investigate their enrichment that you helped create for them.
  • Operant conditioning: You'll witness a training session between the cats & keepers. During this activity you will accompany our keepers who will teach critical behaviors to one of our feline residents, such as go into lock out, stand up so we can observe the paws and underside, and much more!
  • History: You'll learn the history behind our furry friends and how they came to call Big Cat Rescue home. In addition, you'll also hear the story of why Big Cat Rescue was founded, as you take a guided mini tour of the 55 acre sanctuary.
On your exploration you will see many of our approximately 100 exotic cats, including more than a dozen different species and sub species of exotic cats! Learn about where these great cats come from in the wild and what you can do to help their plight. You will join an exclusive group of adventure seekers and a few of our highly trained staff for an orientation that will prepare you for an afternoon of Behind the Scenes excitement!
Each Behind the Big Cat Scenes Adventure is unique and different, so you never know fully what to expect, besides a roaring good time!

Keeper Tours are available on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays ONLY at 10 AM.  Participants in the Big Cat Keeper Tours  must be 10 years of age or older.

Meeting Location

Big Cat Rescue in Citrus Park (NW Tampa, FL) (Exact meeting location details will be provided immediately upon purchase of tickets.)
142 Reviews Rating: 4.8 4.8 out of 5.0
Verified Customer Reviews
Always from real, paying customers
# of Reviews Positive
= Overall
% Positive Average
Last 3 months 23 60 1 = 59 96% 4.7
Last 6 months 42 113 1 = 112 98% 4.8
Last 12 months 74 193 1 = 192 99% 4.8
All 142 366 3 = 363 98% 4.7
142 Reviews
Displaying 1 - 10
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Rating: 4
Something different to do in Orlando
Sun, Sep 20  10:00 AM Female 20-29 Unspecified Unspecified
Good experience, enjoyed hearing about the different stories all the cats came from. Staff was very friendly, informative, and knowledgable.
Rating: 5
A Totally Awesome Experience
Sat, Sep 12  10:00 AM Male 30-39 International Tourist(s) Family Without Children
It was really good to hear all about all the individual care that is put into these rescued animals.

Our guide was excellent - not only knowledgeable and enthusiastic but her love for all the animals shines through without a doubt. She knew there preferences and individual personalities and one could see how warmly the animals responded to her.

It was fun learning about and making the enrichments and even better seeing the cats enjoying them.

I would definitely recommend this tour to everyone who loves animals and wants to see how a true rescue centre has given them the best chance in life. Will definitely go back and take other people there.
Rating: 5
Keeper Tour wows 2 Florida ladies on a hot day
Fri, Sep 11  10:00 AM Female 60-69 Local Other
Our guide was Jo, a delightful British accented lady who showed us how to make some big cat enrichment items to be given to the cats on our visit list. Jo was very good at explaining the story of each big cat, like where it came from, it's estimated age, and information on the species in general. The respect and care for each animal we got to see was apparent from our guide as well as other volunteers along our path. The vacation spaces are such a marvelous idea for a bit of individual peace & quiet or rowdy fun for each cat's preference.

Your organization is doing a great job in a world where there are too many more people who need to be aware that big cats are charismatic but they are wild animals - first and foremost.

I would recommend this tour to folks having the funds for this gig. But I also plan on coming back frequently with other friends and two granddaughters who are old enough for the regular tour, and can't wait now that they have seen my photos. Thanks for sharing.
Rating: 5
Loved the visit!
Sun, Sep 6  10:00 AM Unspecified Unspecified Unspecified Unspecified
Amazing experience, plan on coming back during winter months!
Rating: 5
Sun, Sep 6  10:00 AM Male 50-59 Local Couple on a Date
I would. Recommend this for any all age groups are guide was extremely knowledgeable on all big cats my personal favorite was the lions will come back to visit this place many more times
Rating: 5
A fantastic, informative and educational day!
Sat, Sep 5  10:00 AM Female 30-39 International Tourist(s) Group of Friends
This was my second visit and once again it didn't fail to impress and leave me wanting to support a great charity further. It was an informative and educational visit and it was good to see the development of the centre since my last visit 2 years ago. Working in an animal welfare background in the UK it was comforting that the keepers were so experienced and that enrichment and natural behaviour was so important to all staff and volunteers. Thank you again for a great day and all your hard work and I'm looking forward to returning again in the future.
Rating: 5
Amazing Experience
Fri, Sep 4  10:00 AM Male 20-29 Local Group of Friends
The tour guide did a fantastic job. She was very polite and knowledgeable. She did a fantastic job with explaining the areas and different cat species, along with answering any of our questions. She seemed well prepared.

The sanctuary looked well maintained and the animals looked cared for. I would definitely recommend it to others.
Rating: 5
Brilliant day
Sun, Aug 30  10:00 AM Female 40-49 International Tourist(s) Family With Children
Brilliant day, Jo the keeper who took us round for the keeper tour was great and very informative.

We will be backing we are I the Tampa area I the future
Rating: 5
Great keeper tour at BCR!
Sun, Aug 23  10:00 AM Female 60-69 Local Individual
Rebecca, a senior volunteer keeper, did an excellent tour. It was exciting to see the big cats receive their enrichment and their operant conditioning. The small number of people on this tour allowed each of us to have their questions answered. I've done the day tour already, and now looking forward to the feeding tours and the night tours.

Making enrichments for the cats was fun---now I know how to make some enrichments for my pocket cougars (domestic kitties) at home.

I would strongly encourage everyone who loves animals to come see these big cats, hear their stories, and think about whether pay-to-pet exhibits, backyard tigers, etc. should be legal in this country.
Rating: 5
Amazing experience
Sat, Aug 22  10:00 AM Female 50-59 Domestic Tourist(s) Family Without Children
I highly recommend this tour to learn about and see these beautiful cats. Our tour guide Barb was fantastic, her love for the cats was evident. This tour is well worth the extra money and since the proceeds go to the cats it is a win win!!! I loved it.
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Displaying 1 - 10 of 142
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Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?
Advance purchase is required, and tours do sell out quickly. To maximize your chances of getting the day that you prefer, please book well in advance! Tickets can be purchased online or over the phone with a Visa, Mastercard, or American Express.
Is there an age limit?
Children under 10 years old are not permitted due to the dangerous nature of this tour. Kids 10 years of age or older are welcome to attend as long as they are accompanied by a parent or guardian. We do not make exceptions, no matter how well behaved you think your child is; only ages 10 and over on this tour. All attendees must purchase a full-price ticket.
Can I bring food or toys for the cats?
No, our diet is specific to their needs and we do not allow foods to be given to the cats that have not been approved by our vet and maintained under the most stringent quality controls. We do not give our cats toys that could cause harm if ingested so we do not permit toys from outside our own preselected vendors.
Do you sell food or drinks at the sanctuary? Is there a place to have lunch before the tour?
Yes, we offer drinks and snacks on site, but you are welcome to bring your own, for your consumption only. You will not be allowed to provide the cats food, treats or toys.
Can I take pictures during my tour?
YES! You are welcome to take photos and / or videos during your tour.
Do I have to stay with the group, or can I wander?
The only way to see the cats is on a guided tour, so you will not be able to wander away from the group.
Are there restrooms?
Yes, but we strongly suggest that you go before you get here because we have limited facilities and are on septic systems which cannot handle a lot of volume if there has been recent rain. There is a McDonald's right at the corner of Easy Street, and you could use the restrooms there before the tour.
What if it rains?
The Keeper Tour will still go out in a light rain as long as there is no lightning. If it is thundering or pouring rain, we may try to wait it out, or will offer a refund, or rescheduling.
Can I bring my pet?
Is there a charge for parking?
Parking is always free and there is plenty of it except for our busiest times in Nov, Dec and March. During these busy times it is tight, but we will help you park at no additional fee.
Are you ADA compliant?
If you are unable to walk for two hours, we have golf carts available for $10 extra, per person riding. Our paths are dirt, so wheel chairs are hard to push, but scooters do well. There are no seats along the tour paths.
How do the golf carts work? Are they offered on every tour?
On some tours (but not all), we offer seats on a golf cart for guests who have difficulty with mobility. Each cart can hold 3 guests plus the driver. The cart will follow the tour guide closely so that guests can hear the narration. Depending on different circumstances, these seats can sometimes be booked in advance, but otherwise they are first come-first serve.
Do you have a gift shop?
Yes we do! The Trading Post Gift Shop is right here at our location.
Do you offer gift certificates?
Yes! Gift certificates are available and they make perfect gifts for holidays, birthdays or any other occasion! To purchase a gift certificate please click on the "Gift Certificates: Purchase" link in the box above.
Do you offer private tours?
Yes! Please see the list of all activities to get more information about our private tours.
What does the Big Cat Rescue Release and Hold Harmless Agreement state?
The Big Cat Rescue Release and Hold Harmless Agreement states that all buyers understand and agree to 1.) the potential dangers associated with attending Big Cat Rescue and the rules in place to prevent such dangers from occurring and 2.) the Release and Hold Harmless Agreement, which states that Big Cat Rescue cannot be held responsible for any harm, injury or damage taking place at Big Cat Rescue. Please visit to view the agreement in its entirety.


Refund/Rescheduling Policy

Non-refundable, can be rescheduled with 24 hours notice.
Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded. You may reschedule your tickets (subject to availability) only if you do so at least 24 hours in advance.

Weather Policy

Activity may be cancelled due to severe weather.
The activity usually runs in light rain and other moderate weather conditions, but the seller may cancel the activity up to an hour before the start time in the event of severe or unsafe weather conditions. If the seller cancels the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit for a future event.

Other Policies

All participants must be 10 years of age or older.
Children under 10 years old are not permitted due to the dangerous nature of this tour. Children 10-17 years old are welcome to attend as long as they are accompanied by a parent or guardian.
No Smoking
No Smoking is allowed at Big Cat Rescue, except in the parking lot.
All participants must agree to the Big Cat Rescue Release and Hold Harmless Agreement.
By purchasing tickets you are agreeing to the Big Cat Rescue Release and Hold Harmless Agreement, which appears in its entirety at The waiver web address also appears on your e-ticket if you would like to review the waiver later.
If you purchased a donation Extra, please take note of the following:
Big Cat Rescue is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, FEID 59-3330495. Note that we do not utilize professional solicitors, so 100% of your donation goes to Big Cat Rescue and supporting the cats and stopping the abuse. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION FOR BIG CAT RESCUE, A FL-BASED NONPROFIT CORPORATION (REGISTRATION NO. CH 11409), MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE 1-800-435-7352 WITHIN THE STATE OR BY VISITING REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.

Big Cat Rescue

Big Cat Rescue is the largest accredited sanctuary in the world dedicated entirely to abused and abandoned big cats. We are home to about 100 lions, tigers, bobcats, cougars and other species most of whom have been abandoned, abused, orphaned, saved from being turned into fur coats, or retired from performing acts. Our dual mission is to provide the best home we can for the cats in our care and educate the public about the plight of these majestic animals, both in captivity and in the wild, to end abuse and avoid extinction.

Big Cat Rescue has a dozen species of cats, many of whom are threatened, endangered or extinct now in the wild, including: Tigers, Lions, Leopards, Cougars, Bobcats, Lynx, Servals, Ocelots, Caracals, Geoffroy Cat and exotic cat hybrids!

The non-profit organization is:
  • Accredited by the Global Federation of Sanctuaries
  • Certified by Independent Charities of America as a “Best in America Charity
  • Member of the World Society for Protection of Animals
  • Rated 4 Stars by Charity Navigator (their highest rating) and has the one of the highest scores of any animal based charity
The sanctuary is sithuated on 70 acres in the Citrus Park area of north Tampa.
Please call Zerve at
1 (800) 979-3370
to get more information or
book this activity now
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