Rescuers desperate to find orphaned bobcat kitten in Lakeland

LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) – Rescuers are desperate to find a lost, orphaned bobcat kitten.

His mother was killed on Harden Boulevard near the Oakbridge Parkway intersection in Lakeland on July 18.

Three days later the kitten was spotted at the GTE Financial Credit Union trying to paw at its reflection in a window.

That same day, Vikki O’Neal spotted the kitten on the side of the road eating.

“There was a little kitten in the road and it was eating something that was dead.  As I got closer, I realized it wasn’t a normal kitten,” O’Neal told WFLA.

She couldn’t keep driving, so she flagged down some nearby workers who helped move the baby off the road. “They picked up whatever was dead and moved it over to the grass and he followed right over there.”

She captured video of the kitten eating in the grass after they called for help. Since then, she hasn’t stopped thinking about it.

“I worried about him all weekend. I was really hoping that they found someone to come pick him up, because I knew he was so tiny and he looked pretty frail, and it really was starving,” O’Neal said.

Big Cat Rescue tried to catch the 10-12 week old kitten and set humane traps, but no one has seen him since July 21.

The traps are catching lots of opossum, field rats and even two water moccasins, but no bobcat.

If you see the kitten, please contact or call 813-493-4564 or 813-323-3263 immediately.

The rescue is deeply concerned that he can’t survive on his own.

They hope they can rehab the bobcat and prepare him for life in the wild when he’s older at

Big Cat Rescue is concerned someone will try to keep the bobcat kitten. They said this would be detrimental to its chances of survival in the wild, because around six months the bobcat will become extremely territorial and urinate everywhere.

This could cause someone to release it in the wild and it wouldn’t be able to fend for itself.


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