Wisconsin Big Cat on the Loose Possibly Escaped Pet
For the past week, authorities have been investigating sightings of a big cat in the Milwaukee area. Many people have weighed in on whether it’s a wild mountain lion or could it actually be an escaped pet?
As of today, the Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission is operating under the assumption that the lion has been raised by humans and is trying a new tactic for capturing this big cat with food since previous attempts have failed.
Founder and Executive Director of The Wildcat Sanctuary in Sandstone, MN says, “It’s quite possible that this is an escaped exotic pet. We’ve rescued several cats that were former pets found roaming the streets; including an African Serval, several hybrid Savannah cats and a pet Cougar that had escaped an owner’s home. Once, we even set a live trap for a white tiger that someone said they spotted in their neighborhood. So, this wouldn’t be a first time occurrence.”
The Wildcat Sanctuary campaigns to end the keeping of wild cats as pets. With over 100 wild cat residents, many of which were former failed “pets,” the consequences of owning a wild animal can be devastating for the owner and the animal.
Wisconsin is one of just six states that have no restrictions on owning exotic pets, meaning that juvenile reptiles, primates and cats frequently wind up in local homes — until they get too big to handle, and escape an owner’s home or are let loose.
Thies said, “The Wildcat Sanctuary is willing to offer a home for the cat, if it is captured. We hope the cat can be captured safely, but that means the public needs to stay away and allow authorities and experts to do their job.” The fear is that, if the public is in close proximity to the cat, the authorities will have no choice but to use lethal force and no one wants that.
The Wildcat Sanctuary (TWS) is the only accredited, non-profit sanctuary in the Midwest. TWS provides a natural sanctuary to wild cats in need and inspires change to end the captive wildlife crisis. Combining natural and spacious habitats with a life free of exhibition, TWS allows all residents to live wild at heart. As a true sanctuary, we do not buy, breed, sell or exhibit animals. The Wildcat Sanctuary is accredited by the American Sanctuary Association and the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries. More information can be found at WildcatSanctuary.org.