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“Great Organization - Up close and personal with BIG CATS” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary

Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary
1860 Starratt Road, Jacksonville, FL 32226
904-757-3603
Website
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Ranked #1 of 88 attractions in Jacksonville
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas
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Attraction Details
Owner description: Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our mission is to provide a safe, loving, forever home for endangered big cats, and to educate the public about their plight in the wild and captivity. We do not breed, sell, or trade any of our animals. Our current residents include tigers, lions, cougars, leopards, bobcats, foxes, and coatimundis (the last two are “honorary cats”). We are only open on select days.
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Great Organization - Up close and personal with BIG CATS”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2013

Our family of 5 (kids ages 13, 12 and 7) visited the Catty Shack Ranch on December 29, 2012 while on vacation in Jacksonville. We always look for something new and out of the ordinary to do while visiting Jax. It was a very chilly evening, approximately 45 degrees, when we visited. Heaters were set up in the covered waiting area. After about 20 minutes our tour began.

The kids were able to see Tigers, Lions, Leopards, Cougars and even Arctic Foxes. The volunteer guide was very knowledgeable and provided lots of information on where the Cats came from (mostly former private pets or retired "actors"). But the most amazing part of the tour was when the Big Cats were fed. The kids (and the adults) loved hearing the lions roar in anticipation of the food.

Catty Shack Ranch is a must see for families visiting the Jacksonville Area.

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jennadelane, Volunteer at Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Thanks for coming out on such a cold night! We're glad you enjoyed the night feeding and tour. Our animals come from a variety of situations and places, including government confiscations and from private zoos, but none have been in the entertainment industry (so sorry for the confusion!). Thanks again for coming out and also for the review!
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Jacksonville, Florida
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Highly Recommended”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

I'm a Jax native and only recently heard of the sanctuary. I went with my kids (ages 19-26) in December for a night feeding and everyone enjoyed it. Went back with my wife tonight for another feeding and she thoroughly enjoyed it. Tour is given by knowledgeable and friendly volunteer staff (thanks Jenn). The tour was about 45 minutes and the feeding took another 40 minutes. I've only been there in December and January which is a plus - no problem with mosquitoes. Also, night feeding is the way to go. The animals are nocturnal (and expecting food) so they're all very active. The place is well lit so you can see, photograph, and feel the power of these strikingly beautiful big cats. Knowing that 100% of the admission ($15 for feeding) goes to the benefit of the animals will keep me going back. If you love big cats, especially tigers, then this is a must see. It's a truly unique experience. Bathrooms are port-o-lets so if that's an issue, stop somewhere at the shopping area by I-95.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sterling, Virginia
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Great Time”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

This place was great. An all volunteer force giving tours and feeding the animals here is great. You can really tell how much they love this place and they make it contagious for you. Go here at night and watch them feed the animals, it was amazing!

They charge $15 to get in, but it all goes to help feed the animals and keep the place going. Seeing as they go through about 500lbs of meat a day they need all the help they can get.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, Florida, United States
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“A must see”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

I have been to Catty Shack Ranch 3 times now and I daughter loves it! Last night was my first night feeding and I would go every day if I could. I staff was amazing, always taking time to answer all questions and the Cats are out of this world!

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, FL.
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Feeding Time!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

I can't believe I have lived in Jacksonville for quite some time and never knew about this hidden treasure!! It was so amazing and such an incredible experience to see the animals so active at night, roaring and getting so excited over feeding time. I was surprised at their display of primal behavior...these are definitely not domestic cats! Kudos to the ranch for taking care of all these animals...and with much love! They operate non-profit, no funding, and all are volunteers... Our family highly recommends it....and my daughters already want to adopt/sponsor an animal!

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jennadelane, Volunteer at Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Thanks for coming out to one of our night feedings, they are definitely an experience! Their wild sides are on full display when the food comes out! We do love these animals and you are 100% right, we are run completely by volunteers and all of our funding comes from donations (like the entrance "fee"). We so appreciate you coming out and taking the time to post a review!
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