EUREKA SPRINGS, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge has welcomed a new animal after traveling over 500 miles roundtrip to rescue Santana, a 12-year-old bobcat in Geuda Springs, Kansas.

According to a news release, Tanya Smith, president and co-founder of Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge,
received a call for help about a possible lynx that needed a home.

According to the release, the man that owned the cat was killed in a tragic accident and the spouse was unable to continue to care for the animal. A request was then sent to all sanctuaries that care for smaller cats but due to numerous rescues nationwide, there was no space available.

Turpentine Creek was then able to step in after having room. Upon arrival in Kansas, rescuers noted that Santana was not a lynx but a lynx rufus, meaning she was larger than anticipated.

Santana was reportedly originally purchased in Montana and had been spayed and had her front paws declawed. She was sharing her housing with a domestic cat and Turpentine hopes that in time she might be introduced to some of the other bobcats at the sanctuary.


Santana is the third rescue Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge has been involved in this year.

“There never seems to be an end for the need, though we’ve been working hard to stop private ownership,” Smith explained. “We never want to think we will pass away leaving our pets homeless, but that happens more frequently than most people are aware. It’s hard enough to place elderly cats or dogs, but when you have what is basically an apex predator, there just isn’t much of an option left for these animals if their owners pass, and it can create a burden on loved ones we leave behind. Our hearts go out to the surviving spouse, and we are glad we were able to help her during this time of need and loss.”

If you’re interested in aiding in this latest rescue at Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, donations can be made here.