Happy Father’s Day! Many of our male cats have been fathers, even though TCWR is not a breeding facility. Places that we rescue from, like pseudo sanctuaries and fake zoos, actively participate in breeding their cats. It can be assumed that male cats of a certain age have had cubs.
In the wild, a male cat has little to no business with the cubs. With the exception of lions, male cats will mate with female cats and then leave them. Once cubs are born, they are cared for by their mother with no support from the father. In fact, the killing of cubs by a male cat is not uncommon, especially in lions.
When new male lions dominate and take over a pride, they will kill all nursing offspring to send females back into heat. This is in order to mate with the female lions themselves and create offspring related to them. When male cats reach maturity, they often strike out on their own, creating and fiercely defending large territories. Male lions will form coalitions with other male lions and either take over a pride or establish a pride of their own. Male lions protect cubs while female lions are hunting, but they are not involved in cub rearing beyond that.
TCWR has a couple of notable cat dads. One is Bosco, mate to Momma Shakira and father of four litters. His cubs include Aurora, Snowball, triplets Blackfire, Rocklyn, Peyton, and twins Tanya and Kizmin. Prior to his rescue from the Colorado facility in 2016, Bosco was used in magic shows. He was trained to take his anger and aggression out on himself. When upset, Bosco will bite his back leg. He is extremely possessive of his territory, including his water dishes, food dish, habitat doors, and his mate. He is one of our most aggressive and dangerous cats, especially around feeding time. Bosco has a barrel in his night house that he tosses around, bites, and claws at before dinner. He is a cat that has gone through a lot of trauma. We are glad to give him a safe place to call home where he is treated with respect.
TCWR was also home to a white tiger named Conway, the father of the iconic Kenny. Conway was bred to his sister, Loretta, to create more white tigers. Kenny’s facial deformities are a result of this inbreeding. Conway lived here with Loretta, Kenny, and Kenny’s brother, an orange tiger named Willie.
Our black leopard Spyke was born at TCWR after his parents were rescued. His father was a black leopard named Zambo, contributing that melanistic gene to Spyke. Orange tiger brothers BB King and Mack were born at TCWR to father Ziggy and mother Tigger G.
So today we honor the fathers that live at TCWR, as well as those who have passed. We wish for a future where these cats aren’t being exploited for their ability to produce offspring for profit. As a Father’s Day gift for our father cats, consider adding your name to the Big Cat Public Safety Act and prevent future breeding.