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The Big Cat Internship involves Animal Care Apprentice and Public Education

Download the Big Cat Internship Application

This is a 90-day unpaid position (by 4 quarters/terms) allowing one to gain experience in the zoological field. Job duties include cleaning, diet preparation, light maintenance, educational tours, etc. Interns are responsible for the daily care of a number of exotic feline species including, but not limited to: tigers, lions, leopards, pumas and bobcats. This wide variety of training provides the intern with an exciting array of new skills and experiences. Training is provided by the staff.

General Requirements

  • You must be at least 20 years of age
  • You must have 2 years of college study in a related field (Biology, Zoology, Wildlife Management, Ecology, etc.) or at least 1 year of job experience in a related field (vet clinic, zoo, etc) or 3-years of verifiable job experience in an unrelated field
  • You must maintain or have maintained at least an overall average of 3.0.
  • Some animal care experience preferred
  • You must be capable of lifting up to 60 lbs and in good health
  • You must be drug free
  • We are looking for individuals who are hardworking, dedicated and self motivated

When Are These Internships Offered?
There are four internships offered during the year:

  • Winter Term: November  - February  (Application Deadline August 1st each year)
  • Spring Term: February  - May  (Application Deadline November 1st each year)
  • Summer Term: May  - August  (Application Deadline February 1st each year)
  • Fall Term: August  - November  (Application Deadline May 1st each year)
  • You should hear about the status of your application within 3-4 weeks after the deadline.
  • Applications are accepted year-round for all terms. Preference will be given to those received by the application deadlines; however, applications received after the deadline may still be considered if the positions have not yet been filled.

Detailed Description of Intern Duties

  • The interns will be working full-time Monday through Saturday, with light duties on Sunday
  • All interns will undergo training on safety procedures, crisis management, Class 1 Animal Care, behavioral target training
  • Animal Care: Interns will be involved in the daily care of the animals upon completing training including: food preparation, feeding techniques, cleaning, light maintenance of the enclosures, and grounds, etc.
  • All interns will undergo training on safety procedures, crisis management, Class 1 Animal Care, and behavioral target training

What Does Tiger Creek Provide?

  • Housing (house is fully furnished, bedding and towels provided)
  • TV, DVD, Satellite System
  • Uniform shirt
  • Materials, Curriculum and Training
  • Intern Vehicle (If you did not bring your own car)

What Do I As An Intern Provide?

  • Travel arrangements to and from Tiger Creek (If flying, you will enter at Tyler Airport and we will pick you up)
  • Your own meals
  • Hiking/work boots, work pants
  • Spending money
  • Work clothes for ~1 week (it takes about a week for your uniforms to come in)
  • During winter months (Nov-March), you will need gloves and a coat or long sleeves to layer under your uniform
  • Rain gear

To Apply For The Internship You Must Provide:

  • Application
  • Cover letter, including an explanation of your previous experience, why you want to intern here at Tiger Creek, and what your career goals are for the future
  • Resume
  • Recent Photo
  • Proof of a current tetanus shot (within 3 years)

Download the Big Cat Internship Application

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

This program does not include DIRECT CONTACT with big cats!

DIRECT Contact is defined as: any physical contact with any animal, including cage contacts i.e. (reaching of limbs through gate openings, chain link), etc.

These animals are not pets and if that is what you are looking for then you should consider an internship somewhere else.

Only the Park Management is authorized to allow any direct or indirect contact and that requires either DIRECT SUPERVISION and/or TRAINING.

DIRECT SUPERVISION is defined as: "in person" or as in a "physical presence of a manager." This means that a manager must PHYSICALLY be in YOUR presence and/or authorize the occurrence.

ANY and ALL VIOLATIONS involving direct PHYSICAL contact with the big cats is subject to immediate dismissal from the property under escort by local law enforcement, security or management!

Due to insurance reasons and the welfare of the big cats there are NO exceptions to this policy!

We do not allow any member, visitor, guest, family member, employee, intern or staff of any kind, nor the general public to have direct contact with any big cat over the age of 6-months. This is in accordance with the rules and regulations of the USDA and our liability insurance policies. There are only two exceptions of direct contact with juvenile or adult big cats over the age of 6-months:

  1. Direct contact may be authorized during medical procedures while the big cat is sedated under veterinarian care.
  2. The executive director and/or the director of operations on a case-by-case basis may need to have direct contact to assess, treat or shift a big cat.

Absolutely no one else is allowed to touch any big cats.

Safety of the animals and the staff must always come first over personal needs or wants.