help for big cats

FOUR PAWS believes that big cats should not be kept as pets or for entertainment, as these wild animals suffer in captivity under inadequate keeping conditions including lack of expert care, frequent travelling, training and intensive interaction with humans. Unfortunately, thousands of big cats still live under very poor conditions in circuses, zoos and private ownership. Uncontrolled breeding causes ‘surplus’ animals that either end up dead or (illegally) traded to unsuitable places.
FOUR PAWS calls for the improvement of legal standards regarding keeping conditions in certified zoological facilities and sanctuaries and demands a ban on other forms of captivity. Devising solutions for unwanted and illegally kept big cats plays a crucial role in our work. Our big cat sanctuaries and centres offer rescued big cats a species-appropriate home.


#BreakTheViciousCycle Milestones

Celebrating achievements and accomplishments in the fight against the big cat trade in South Africa

Lion Tharon

Lion population decreases by 75% in five decades

Scientists are aware that lion populations have undergone major decreases across their historic ranges, but the question is how huge? 

Braila Group at LIONSROCK

Lion Task Team Nomination

South Africa’s Department for Environment has announced it will establish a Ministerial Task Team to work on the phase out of the captive lion breeding industry.  

Big Cats: Way of Life & Behaviour

Big Cats: Way of Life & Behaviour

What characterizes these large carnivores and how do they spend their lives in the wild?

Two white lions

Captive Breeding For Exterior Traits

Commercial interests disguised as species protection

two lions - canned hunting

Canned Lion Hunting

Born to be killed: lion hunting in South Africa

Lioness Neida at LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary

LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary

A FOUR PAWS project in South Africa since 2006



It’s closer than you think! FOUR PAWS reveals the involvement of Europe in the ruthless trade and the cruel tiger business.

get involved
Transfer tiger Caruso

Tiger King – everyone is watching, no one is acting

The truth behind Joe Exotic and Tiger King season 2 on Netflix! 


Visit our Big Cat Sanctuary LIONSROCK

in South Africa