Monday, March 28, 2011

Tigers Update!

Many times when new cats arrive at IEAS, it does not take long for them to figure out the feeding and cleaning routine. The two newest tiger residents are no exception! They quickly figured out where each one was going to eat their breakfast and are now catching on to the cleaning routine. We like to clean inside each habitat at least three times per week. This morning, the female tiger was happily rolling around in the grass while we were cleaning in one side of their habitat. The male watched us patiently from his house. When we were through with the first half, the female came right over when we raised the gate to eat her food. The male came out of his house so that we were able to feed him and then clean the other half of their habitat.

We are so happy that these two amazing animals are settling in so nicely to their new home. The female has been spending more and more time exploring outside during the day, just watching us while we are working around the facitlity. The male was hanging out on top of his cave yesterday evening, just watching the world go by!

Remember, there are only a few more days left to participate in the Cougar Naming Contest! Be sure to submit your name by the end of March for a chance to win!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Pool Time!

I don't think any of us can complain about the weather this past week. I know the animals of IEAS are sure having some fun. The bears are enjoying their pond and water tubs, especially the cubs. Visitors beware as the area around their water tubs becomes a splash zone! They have so much fun rough housing in them. The grizzlies are in their pool at least once a day...if not all day! And if you are anywhere near their pool while they are will get wet!

Our tigers, of course, are having a blast in their pools. Even the older tigers still enjoy splashing around every now and then. Our two new resident tigers wasted no time cooling off in their pool. They both love to cool off during the early morning hours and late evening hours. They tend to want their privacy while they are enjoying a relaxing dip. The male tiger had just gotten out of his pool when one of the keepers came over for a visit. He came right over to the fence and greeted her with a chuff. So we are happy to see these two tigers and the cougars warming up to not only their human caregivers, but their animal neighbors as well.

If you would like to see a good show, now is the time to visit these wonderful animals. The weather couldn't be more perfect, and the animals are ready to make a splash!

Monday, March 21, 2011

UPDATE: Cougars Are Exploring!

Well, the cougars getting much more adventurous! Both the male and female cougar have perches that are built about fifteen feet off the ground and in the past few days, the two cats have wandered up to explore. The male laid down right away, enjoying the view and shade from the trees above. The female also spends a great deal of time up there and is visibly more comfortable from that vantage point. She seems to be the type who likes to have a sharp eye on everything going on around her. We are very happy that they are enjoying these perches and really making use of all of the space provided to them.

They, like the tigers, are adjusting very well and becoming more and more trusting of their caretakers all the time! They are both already getting the hang of our daily feeding, pick up, and house cleaning routines. The male recognized immediately that the gators we drive are what brings his meal and now gets very excited whenever a gator passes! The female pops out of her house as soon as we get there in the morning, ready for us to lower the gate and put her food in.

Stay updated on their progress here on our Blog and on our Facebook!

Friday, March 18, 2011

UPDATE: New Cats Showing Us Some Affection!

First off, we've been getting some really great, creative name submissions for our Cougar Naming Contest! There is a little less than two weeks left and we can already see we are going to have our work cut out for us deciding on one name for each of cougars!
So, keep the names coming! Soon enough these two cats will each have an Adoptive Parent and it could be YOU!

Well, all four of our most recently rescued cats have really been coming around to us! The two tigers spend their days tucked in their house and cave but in the evenings, are more than happy to come over for a visit, especially the female! She will get a bit nervous as someone approaches but as soon as she recognizes who it is and we talk to her a bit, she comes right over and chuffs at us! Chuffing is a tigers way of purring, like a friendly greeting they use to say hi! The male is a bit more cautious but when he sees that his female companion trusts us, he comes over and says hello as well!

We're very excited that they are becoming more trusting of us and more comfortable in their habitat. The male has been spotted, soaking wet, after going in his pool. He left muddy footprints all the way back to his perch! We have even seen signs that they have been playing with their giant pickle toy! The pickle moved from their perch, to the ground, to the lower perch, to the highest perch over the course of a few nights. This is a great sign that they are enjoying the behavioral enrichment we provided!

The cougars are doing great as well!
More news on them to come soon!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Cougar Naming Contest!

The two new cougars at IEAS have settled in and now comes another exciting step in their lives – they need names! We want YOUR help to decide on what the names of these incredible animals should be!

HOW TO SUBMIT A NAME: If you would like to submit a possible name for one of the cougars, go to our Facebook page (make sure you “Like” us or you won’t be able to post your submission!) and write the name of your choice on our wall. This is for both the male AND female cougar so be sure to distinguish between the two!


You must be AT LEAST 7 years old to submit a name (because you must be 7 years old to visit the Sanctuary and as such, younger children would be ineligible for the prize).

Each individual may only submit ONE name for each cougar. This means you can submit one female and one male name.

On April 1, Sanctuary staff will choose names and announce the winners!

WHAT IF YOU WIN? If your name wins, you will be notified (via Facebook) and will automatically become the Adoptive Parent of the cougar you helped name for six months! Being an Adoptive Parent will allow you to receive an 8x10 photograph of the animal, an adoption certificate, and most importantly, the opportunity to visit the Sanctuary and the animal you have now adopted. This will allow you to come sit by the habitat of your animal and get to know them! For more information about adopting an animal, visit the website below:

Be sure to submit your choices for names by March 31!

Get creative, be original, and think about the amazing animal whose life YOU can become a part of!

Friday, March 11, 2011

UPDATE: The New Residents are Settling in Very Well!

It's been a few days since the two tigers and two cougars arrived at IEAS from Houston. Now that things have calmed down here, the four cats have had a chance to explore their habitats, find some favorite spots to lay, and see what their new life is going to be like!

The male cougar has found his way out of his house several times in the past few days. He has been seen laying in the grass in the sun and up above his cave on his hill. He even came out to greet one of the interns who was refilling his water trough. He walked all the way over to say hi and see what she was doing. He seems to be a very friendly and mellow cougar and has caught the attention of his neighbor, Billy, a caracal. Billy has been staring at the cougar, watching his every move!

The female cougar has been a bit less outgoing, but definitely seems to be getting more and more comfortable. She has been walking around her habitat exploring. She has spent a good amount of time in her cave and it seems she may be very much like her neighbor, N'dito, in that she's always on watching everyone around her! Allie and Rasul, the female cougar's other neighbors, have been visiting her every so often.

The two tigers have found their favorite spots to lay so far. The male has a spot in the shade that he seems to enjoy laying in while the female has picked a cave in their habitat as the perfect place to lay. This is where they spend most of their time during the day but in the evenings, they are all very eager to explore. The tigers have been jumping onto their perches and smelling every corner of their habitat. The male has been catching lots of good scents and exhibiting the Flehmen response very often! It's a good sign that he is trying to familiarize himself with his surroundings and taking in everything he can!

All in all, each of the four cats has had a great appetite and is slowly catching on to our morning feeding routine. We are eager and exciting for them to fully adjust and are just as excited to keep you updated on their progress! We will have more pictures and videos to come; we want to be sure the new additions are settled and comfortable before we take too many!

If you have any questions about the new additions or ANY of the residents of IEAS, feel free to leave a comment or post it to our Facebook. We love to share anything and everything about our Sanctuary!

Thank you all for your support!
Be sure to stay updated on the four newest lives changed by IEAS!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Our New Residents Have Arrived!

Well, it was a busy, exciting, and energy filled day yesterday here at IEAS and two new cougars and two new tigers are now safely here at their new home! Personnel from the Houston Zoo and Houston SPCA were here to help and we were sure to document the entire day!

When the Houston SPCA truck arrived with the four big cats, everyone was anxious to get them situated. We started with the female cougar, unloading her transport cage into a trailer to take her to her new habitat. She was nervous and eager to be out of the cage so as soon as the door opened, she ran into the grass and found a perfect, comfortable hiding place for a cougar - a cave! She stayed there, unsure of her new surroundings, until most of the onlookers were gone. Eventually, she explored her habitat and found her way into her cozy, new hay filled house.

Next to be unloaded was the male cougar. He was nervous, but calm. Just like his female companion, he was eager to be out of his transport cave and unsure of his new surroundings. As soon as his cage was situated and everyone was ready, his gate was opened and he slowly walked out into his habitat. He looked around quite a bit at his pool and new perches as he walked into his hay filled house. The houses proved to be a place where these two cougars felt safe and comfortable during their first few minutes at home.

Finally, it was time to get the two tigers into their shared habitat. They were both certainly happy to be finished with the long travel in their transfer cages and eager to have space and time to acclimate to their new habitat. After finding each other, they definitely became more at ease and found their own places to lay. The male has found a spot near the pool to lay while the female has picked a more hidden spot in a cave. We do know that they are enjoying the rest of their habitat, as they've been spotted laying on their perches and exploring the area!

It was an exciting day overall and we are so happy and pleased that we have the opportunity to change the lives of these four incredible animals. You can be a part of this change just by supporting the Sanctuary and our efforts. Spread the word and make a difference for all of the residents of IEAS!

We will have more videos and pictures to come!
We want to be sure to allow the cats plenty of time to adjust and settle!

Click below to watch a video of the arrival of these magnificent new additions!

Thanks to everyone who has supported us and
to the Houston SPCA and Houston Zoo!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Four New Additions to IEAS!

We have some exciting news from IEAS - we are expecting four new additions to our Sanctuary!

On Tuesday, March 8, two Bengal tigers (a male and a female) and two cougars (a male and a female) will be brought to IEAS from Coryell County TX. These animals were rescued by the Houston SPCA and Coryell County Sheriff's Office, from a facility housing over 300 animals (including more than 200 Rottweilers, 39 horses, 18 domestic cats, birds and other exotics), all forced to live in extremely poor conditions.

One of the Bengal tigers set to come to IEAS!

Patricia Mercer, President of the Houston SPCA, says:
"We are pleased to have secured placement for all four of the big cats at the International Exotic Animal Sanctuary, the first AZA certified sanctuary in the United States. These once neglected and abused animals will soon journey to Boyd, Texas to live out the rest of their lives in a beautiful and peaceful habitat."
All of us at IEAS are very excited at the opportunity to provide these magnificent animals with a secure, comfortable, and happy place to live the rest of their lives. We will do everything we can to make sure each of their lives takes a significant turn for the best. We have habitats ready for them, with lots of toys and enrichment, pools, and perches to rest on.

Above is one section of a three section habitat for
the two Bengal tigers who are to arrive on Tuesday!

If you'd like to support the Sanctuary and our four new residents, expected to arrive next week, please visit our Donate page. You can truly help us make a difference in the lives of these two tigers and two cougars.

Be sure to stay updated on their progress!
We will be putting plenty of updates on our
Blog, Facebook, Twitter, and website,
so be sure to keep visiting them all
to find out when the four cats arrive
and how they settle in!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Grizzlies Make A Splash!

It was a crazy morning for the Grizzly bears of IEAS -
full of swimming, wrestling, running, and playing!

Today was the first day since the bears went into hibernation that they went onto the pool side of their habitat. Because they had all tucked away to sleep on the opposite side of the habitat, we took the opportunity to go in, do some work, plant some grass, and fix their pool. Ever since the bears woke up a few days ago, they have been itching to run over and dig into the fresh grass and swim in their newly filled pool. Today, they got the chance to do just that! We finally finished the work we needed to do, filled the pool, and let the Grizzlies over onto their pool side.

They all had an absolute BLAST! Wendy ran straight for the pool; she rolled and splashed all over while her brothers first investigated the taste of the new, fresh, thick grass! Once eating got boring, they took their turns in the pools, wrestling, and jumping all over their perches. They were all ecstatic to be back in the water with fresh grass to run and play in!

It was truly a sight to see these incredible bears having so much fun!
It certainly made the work we did on this side of their habitat completely worth it!

Be sure to come and visit the Grizzlies of IEAS!
They are always happy to see friendly faces!