Monday, February 28, 2011

Today is the last chance!

Have YOU written a review yet? Today is the last chance and we want to remind everyone how big a difference just five minutes of your time can make!

If you haven't heard, GreatNonProfits is awarding $5,000 to the non-profit organization that gets the highest number of reviews on their website during the month of February! This is an amazing opportunity for the supporters of IEAS to help make a huge difference in the lives of the animals living at the Sanctuary!

If you haven't been here, that's alright! You can get a great impression of the Sanctuary via our website ( and can certainly write a review based on that! If you HAVE been to the Sanctuary, even better! Either way, your review can help us win! We're a bit behind but we still have time if YOU help!

Visit the website below to write a review! It's fast, easy, and absolutely no cost to you!

The cats and bears at IEAS will thank you!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Irritating Garden Pests? Use Big Cat Scat!

Spring is here and we are sure that lots of you have begun working on your gardens! If you have problems with irritating pests munching and ruining all of your hard work, we have a solution! Researchers have shown that the use of tiger scat in a garden will help keep those pests away. For goats, feral pigs, kangaroos (not likely to be a problem for most of you...), and rabbits, the scat is guaranteed! It may also work for horses, cattle, and deer (and we've heard that it does). The scent of "predator" is enough to trigger the instinct in these animals to avoid the area completely!

Now, we're pretty sure that most of you don't have any extra tiger poo lying around. We, on the other hand, have more than our fair share of this natural repellant, so we can provide it! Every week we collect buckets full of tiger scat, lay it out to dry, then grind it into a powder by hand (one of the interns favorite jobs as you can imagine). This powder, when sprinkled around your garden, will save your flowers from those hungry pests!

So if garden pests are the bane of your existence or just a bit irritating, this spring, save your sapling, seedling, or garden and support a worth while cause.

1/2 Gallon Bucket: $8.00
1 Gallon Bucket: $15.00
2.5 Gallon Bucket: $35.00
5 Gallon Bucket: $50.00

ONE Gallon of Big Cat Scat should be enough to cover 100 square feet. You can call in an order at 940-433-5091 or e-mail us at Remember, ALL proceeds go directly to the cats!

Their poo helps you & your donation helps them!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A New Cave for Pecos the Bobcat!

Over the past week, we have been working to build a new cave for Pecos, one of the bobcats living here at IEAS. The cave started with an igloo designed for dogs but it was the perfect size for a bobcat! After a few layers of cement, a few more of mortar, and a coat of paint, the igloo was ready for Pecos! Here's a look at the process of building...

Come this summer, we expect to see Pecos spending lots of time in this igloo, as it is a favorite place for most of the other bobcats here at IEAS. The igloos are nice and shady, allowing the bobcats to keep cool during the hot Texas summers.

Be sure to come out to see
all of our cats and bears on a tour soon!
They love the warm weather
and will certainly be out to see you!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Tour Season!

While we provide tours year round here at IEAS, spring and summer are upon us and that means we need to get ready for tour season! We already have some very large groups lined up for the next few months and we are eager to start spreading the word about these wonderful animals.

If you've been thinking about coming out for a tour, but keep putting it off, now is the time to make the trip! Once the warm weather hits, it really is the perfect time to come out and see the residents of IEAS. Most of the cats and bears LOVE to play and lounge in the sun so you are guaranteed to see some incredible animals. The tours usually last about an hour and a half walking on gravel paths so wear comfortable walking shoes!

Our tours are full of amazing animals and great information and you'll be amazed at how much care and effort we put into supporting these magnificent creatures. It truly is an experience you will never forget and your visit will help the animals of IEAS more than you know - so head to our website for more information and come out and see us!

Here's what others have said about their visits to the Sanctuary!
"I have been coming here for years; thank you for all that you do! One of the reasons that I love to come here is that the animals are not required to perform. If we stop at an enclosure and the animal becomes agitated, the humans move-on; the animals welfare comes first! It is such a pleasure to see these animals safe and healthy; to see the tigers chuffing at the staff means that they feel secure. Some of these animals come from horrible conditions. While they're still in captivity, they are treated with care and respect. Thank-you for your commitment to the animals." - Michelle S.

"Today we visited your sanctuary. I had heard of you guys over the years but just never got a chance to come out. I didn't know what to expect. I'm a huge animal lover, especially for big cats. I found your place to be very educational. I was amazed at how clean everything was and how healthy the animals looked. They looked very comfortable and happy. Our tour guide was great at giving us information about the animals and made the whole experience fun. It's so nice to know that you give these animals a place to live out their lives where they are treated so well." - Diane M., Fort Worth, TX

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

In Loving Memory of Rani

A few days ago, we lost one of our beloved Bengal tigers, Rani. It is with very heavy hearts that we say goodbye to this amazing tiger. Rani was one of the sweetest, most loveable animals that anyone could ever have the pleasure of knowing. She was one of the most talkative tigers here at the Sanctuary, always greeting her visitors with an affectionate moan and a chuff. It was clear that nothing made Rani happier than a visit from just about anyone. She would come over and lay by the fence, just happy to have a companion.

At 23 years old, Rani was the oldest resident of IEAS and the oldest tiger in the SSP (Species Survival Plan). She was a very special girl and could touch the heart of anyone. Each of us considers ourselves blessed to have had the opportunity to spend time with and care for this incredible animal. She had quite a character and could truly brighten any mood with her quintessential sounds and loving spirit. She benefited greatly from our Emotional Enrichment Program, as she craved attention and viewed all of her caregivers as a source of comfort. She is proof that taking care of an animal's emotional well-being is just as important as providing for their basic needs such as a proper diet and veterinary care. So today we say farewell to Rani.

She will forever live on in our hearts and our memories.

Finally Some Warmer Weather!

Well, the snow and ice are gone again and the temperature has gone up! We've been taking full advantage of this here at IEAS, getting lots of outdoor work done. Interns and keepers have been painting, weeding, building, fixing, and trimming - all while leaving our sweatshirts and gloves at home!

With the 60-70+ temperatures, the cats and bears have been out and about too! The cats have been out basking in the sun. Many of them love to lay flat on their backs warming their bellies. The Triplets (Akbar, Arusha, and Kumar) have been laying together under their trees, which is their favorite spot to lay in the summer time! It's giving us the feeling that spring/summer are just around the corner! We've even seen the Grizzlies! It seems like it may be time for them to come out of their hibernation. They'll be looking forward to wrestling in their pools and playing on their see saws!

While the weather is perfect, be sure to come out for a tour!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Surviving the Winter!

Here at IEAS, we get interns from all over the country! Even those who come from up north are surprised by the unpredictable weather that Texas winters can bring. With most of the work at the Sanctuary being outdoors, each of the winter interns has their own ways of coping and surviving the sometimes harsh weather. To get some insight into how they all handle the cold, follow this link to "Surviving the Winter" in the Intern Program section of our website...

Here is a little preview of what you'll read!

"Everything feels heavier, including yourself, considering you are wearing about 15 extra pounds of clothing. All the hoses are frozen, as well as the water troughs. This is when you grab a long steel pipe and proceed to beat it against the ice until it breaks a hole through so the animals can reach the water underneath. And trust me, this could definitely take some time, not to mention energy and some strong arm muscles." - Emily
"All the challenges that I faced while working in the winter didn't bother me, but made it more satisfying and exciting that I was working this hard to help give these animals the best care I could give while they are out in the elements as well." - Mackenzie

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

$5,000 for the Animals of IEAS!

We need your help! The Sanctuary has the chance to win $5,000 and all we need is for people to write reviews of IEAS! Even if you haven't been here before, you can get a great feel for the Sanctuary on our website ( So, whether you have been here for a tour or have supported us through the website and emails, you can help! Just write a short review of IEAS on the following link. Whoever receives the most reviews during February will win the $5,000! It is at no cost to you and will help these amazing animals!

THANK YOU to all who write a review!

You can help each and every animal at IEAS!

Monday, February 7, 2011

After Effects of Ice and Snow

Well, the ice and snow disappeared just about as fast as it came. However, it left some damage in its wake. As thing thawed out, we started to find little leaks, cracks, and breaks caused by the freezing temperature and ice. A pump in Bear Orphanage broke sometime during the cold. This pump is responsible for pushing water from one of our tanks up the hill to supply about a third of the lines and hoses in the Sanctuary. Because it is broken, we've been without water in this section. Instead of filling the waters with hoses, we have had to haul 5 gallon buckets of water from our Nutrition Center to each habitat and pour the water through the fence into the troughs. When doing all of the waters necessary, this has left us hauling 30-40 of these buckets. It is certainly exhausting work, but it is worth it knowing that the animals will have clean water to drink. While we work hard to make sure of this, Richard and Roy have been working hard to get the pump fixed. It looks like we'll have water back to all of the hoses in the next few days.

In addition to this break, we may have to dig a new well to provide water to a different section of the Sanctuary. So far, it is unclear what the cause of this lack of water is, but if it IS the well, this fix will surely take longer than the Bear Orphanage pump. This section of the Sanctuary may be without water for another two weeks. In this case, the staff and interns will be hauling water for the animals AND themselves, as this pump supplies water to the Meadows Dormitory (for the interns) and the Veterinary Clinic.

So, for now, we will all be very careful with our water use! We are hoping these breaks and leaks don't keep turning up but we will be ready if they do!

It is times like these that we are VERY grateful for the support you all provide for us! Your generosity helps us immensely in the ability to fix the breaks that pop up now and then!

Friday, February 4, 2011

A Surprise Visit from the Grizzlies!

Even with the cold weather the past few days, our Grizzly bears have decided to come out of "hibernation" for a visit! The four have them, Papa, George, Willie, and Wendy, have been snuggled together in a cave we built for them for over a month. They have popped their heads out to get some fresh air a few times on particularly warm days, but none of us expected to see them out in this frigid air! Even still, Willie came wandering out first and sat at his icy water trough for a drink. He was followed by Wendy, who took the opportunity to play with some ice chunks that she broke off of the snow piles in their habitat! Papa and Willie were intrigued by her jumping around and came out next to investigate. It was nice to see them but it didn't take long for the cold to make them wander back into their warm cave together! Just like the Black bears, they had pine tree branches and hay that they brought into the cave. They both make for great denning material! We are looking forward to the spring for sure. It will be nice to the see the Grizzlies' faces more often!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

February brings in the cold!

So far, February has been a bit of a challenge! We woke up yesterday morning to find 3 inches of ice and snow with some strong winds blowing it everywhere! The whole Sanctuary was cold and white but the animals were ready to eat first thing as usual! We had to walk the pans of meat to most of the houses, though we were able to drive some roads in the Sanctuary. We used a torch to melt the ice and snow off of the frozen locks, pins, and gates. A feeding that normally takes about 20 minutes took over an hour and a half today! It was a long morning but the animals are all full, happy, and warm in their hay filled houses. Well, except the few who are full, happy, and playing out in the snow! Sabrina, a white Bengal tiger, was rolling in the snow and rubbing on her snow covered tire. She also managed to make a huge snowball with one of her big boomer balls by rolling all over her habitat. Nearby, Nakita, a bobcat, laid in the snow by her Christmas tree watching the birds at the feeder near her habitat.

We are preparing for the next few days, which will likely be as cold and challenging as this morning! We are ready to do whatever is necessary to make sure that the animals are all happy and content!