Tigers belong in the wild – in places like the Bandipur Tiger Reserve located a couple hours outside of Bangalore, India, where I had the unique opportunity to see the elusive creature a few years back. The Karnataka Forest Department rangers work tirelessly in India to protect the

Bandipur Tiger Reserve
A bengal tiger in a pond at the Bandipur Tiger Reserve in India.

natural habitat from the encroaching development and the tigers and other wildlife from poachers.

Exotic animals occasionally make their way to places in the United States that are not established zoos and not necessarily interested in a scientific approach to genetically appropriate breeding and proper care of the animals. Roadside shows, performers, and even individuals purchase, breed and sell tigers and other exotic wild animals in the United States.

Some of these animals may not receive the level of care needed or require a more appropriate home – and just like cats and dogs need rescued.

Carolina Tiger Rescue
Carolina Tiger Rescue is in Pittsboro, North Carolina.


That’s when the Carolina Tiger Reserve opens its doors and provides a home for tigers in need of nutrition, veterinary care and a place to roam relatively free in something similar to their natural habitat. The Carolina Tiger Reserve is open to the public in Pittsboro, North Carolina and operates on

Carolina Tiger Rescue
A rescued tiger t the Carolina Tiger Rescue.

private funding.

The Carolina Tiger Reserve encompasses a variety of chain link cages across 55 acres and includes caracals, cougars, kinkajou, lions, ocelots, servals, along with the namesake tigers. The Reserve operates as a sanctuary, which basically means they do not breed or sell any animals, but rather simply provide a forever home to tigers and related exotic animals in need of a safe and secure space to live.

Carolina Tiger Reserve
Several tigers keep a watchful eye through the fence.

In some ways, the Carolina Tiger Reserve does for tigers what Habitat for Humanity does for people – help provide a decent place to live. However, Habitat for Humanity is different in that it is not an end state. Habitat for Humanity is like planting a seed, providing the partner families an opportunity that can be used as leverage to impact not only their lives, but also their families, friends, neighbors and even entire

A tiger at the Carolina Tiger Reserve in Pittsboro, North Carolina.


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