Review of Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue and Educational Center in Rock Springs, Wisconsin

by StevenHelmer

We visited this non-profit rescue center this past weekend. Read to find out what I thought.

Description: Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue and Educational Center, located on Pine Street in Rock Springs, Wisconsin. The center is home to rescued lions, tigers and leopards and offers both self-guided and guided tours. I took my family to this center this past weekend as part of a weekend-long family vacation in the Wisconsin Dells area.


When I made plans to surprise my family with a trip to the Mid-Continent Railway Museum, I originally intended for it to be a day trip. However, we ultimately decided to make a weekend of it and, when we did, I looked for some other attractions we could visit with the kids.

I had heard a couple of my friends mention the Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue and Educational Center before, but didn't know much about it. When I learned it was only a few minutes away from our intended destination and we actually passed it on the way to and from our motel, I decided to pay it a visit. And, as it turns out, it was well worth our time. 

Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue
Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue
Photo by Steven Helmer

I'll start out by saying a visit to the Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue is not an all-day experience (it took us about 30 minutes to see all the cats) and, because of that, is probably not something you'd want to make a long road trip just to do. However, if you are in the Wisconsin Dells area, it really should be added to your agenda.

The thing I found I really liked about this center was the almost-intimate interaction you have with the big cats. We were, at times, only a few feet away from the animals and, with just the protective barricades between us and them, it was a great opportunity for our daughters to see the creatures up close and personal. My daughters especially loved it when one of the tigers started making a meow-like noise at them and all of us stopped and listened when one of the lions decided to start roaring (very loudly) from the opposite side.

The fact all of the animals were rescued from defunct zoos, illegal breeders, etc. didn't go unnoticed either. Given how beautiful those cats were, especially up close like that (there were times when they reminded us of our house cat), it really made us feel bad for them and glad they were able to find a place that actually properly cared for them. In other words, I didn't feel like my admission dollars were wasted.

Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue
Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue
Photo by Steven Helmer

Final Opinion

Again, this rescue center wasn't in our original vacation plans. However, after visiting there this past weekend, it is a place we would definitely go to again, just to see how our favorite big cats are fairing. If you are in the Wisconsin Dells area, this is worth taking the time to visit.

My Grade: A

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Updated: 05/09/2016, StevenHelmer
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