NEW YORK (AP) — An 80-pound cougar was removed from a New York Town apartment where by she was currently being stored illegally as a pet, animal welfare officials stated Monday.
The proprietor of the 11-thirty day period-previous female cougar surrendered the animal on Thursday, Kelly Donithan, director of animal catastrophe reaction for the Humane Culture of the United States, claimed in a news launch.
The cougar, nicknamed Sasha, expended the weekend at the Bronx Zoo getting veterinary care and is now headed to the Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge in Arkansas, officers mentioned.
The Humane Culture coordinated with zoo officials, the point out Department of Environmental Conservation and the New York Police Division on the major cat’s removing.
“I’ve by no means viewed a cougar in the wild, but I have observed them on leashes, smashed into cages, and crying for their moms when breeders rip them absent,” the Humane Society’s Donithan explained. “I’ve also viewed the heartbreak of entrepreneurs, like in this circumstance, right after remaining offered not just a wild animal, but a phony desire that they could make a great ‘pet.’”
Donithan stated this cougar was somewhat lucky mainly because her owners, who live in the Bronx, identified that a wild cat is not in shape to are living in an condominium and surrendered her.
“The owner’s tears and nervous chirps from the cougar as we drove her absent painfully drives residence the lots of victims of this horrendous trade and myth that wild animals belong wherever but the wild,” Donithan stated.
Office of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos reported that whilst cougars “may appear lovable and cuddly when young, these animals can increase up to be unpredictable and dangerous.”
Bronx Zoo director Jim Breheny mentioned the exotic pet trade makes no contribution to the conservation of endangered species.
“These animals usually finish up in pretty terrible scenarios, saved by personal men and women who do not have the methods, facilities, information, or know-how to offer for the animals’ most basic requires,” Breheny reported. “In addition to these welfare worries for the animals, the holding of massive cats by private men and women poses a authentic basic safety hazard to the proprietor, the owner’s family members and the neighborhood at huge.”
New York has noticed other noteworthy cases involving unsafe animals in private residences, including Ming, a 400-pound tiger that was taken out from a Harlem condominium in 2003.
Ming’s owner, Antoine Yates, was arrested and sentenced to five months in prison for reckless endangerment. Ming died in 2019 at the Noah’s Lost Ark Unique Animal Rescue Centre in Ohio.
Police Commissioner Dermot Shea claimed the cougar’s case “is at present below investigation and no even further data is obtainable at this time.”