People in the small community of Squaw Valley are feeling for the Cat Haven which is located just up the road in Dunlap.
Bear Mountain Pizza is a place many workers and visitors of the sanctuary stop off for food.
Sandi Cates has toured the facility several times.
“I’ve always loved it. It’s an awesome educational place,” said Sandi Cates, a resident of Squaw Valley.
Cates even interacted with the lion, Couscous, back when he was a cub.
“When I found out which cat it was my heart just dropped. It was just really sad to hear that had happened and it ended so tragically for everyone,” said Cates.
For families, the Cat Haven is a jewel; their own personal zoo in the foothills.
“It’s definitely sad to hear for the family who lost a loved one and for the group who is working to rehabilitate these cats and providing a haven for them,” said Greg Bronson, a resident of Squaw Valley.
Rick Kirchman feels bad as well, but says unfortunately, danger comes with this line of work.
“They’re wild animals and they ought to just be careful when they’re in there. They’re unpredictable,” said Rick Kirchman, a visitor to the area.
Dawn Parks is already worried about the Haven’s future.
“I’m worried if they’re going to keep it open and about the stigma because of it,” said Dawn Parks, an employee at Squaw Valley Trading Center.
A closure, even if it’s temporary, would not only be devastating for the workers and the animals, but for businesses like Squaw Valley Trading Center.
“People have to stop somewhere and especially us we’re the first ones up the mountain and it can affect us in a lot of different ways financially,” said Parks.
Cates is keeping her fingers crossed that no one has to endure any hardships.
“I just hope they can rebound from all of this and continue with the work they do because they do really good work there,” said Cates.
The Cat Haven is typically open for public tours, but Wednesday it was actually closed. So no visitors were inside during the attack.