Exotic cat that escaped from home has been found - WNEM TV 5

Exotic cat that escaped from home has been found

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Source: Riley Gibbs Source: Riley Gibbs

It’s not your usual ally cat.

Authorities say an exotic cat has been found safe after it escaped out of an open window at its home in Swartz Creek. 

Ameera, a female African caracal, escaped from a home off Linden Road between Maple and Hill Roads near Morrish Elementary Thursday morning.

A caracal is a medium-sized wild cat that lives in Africa, the Middle East and Persia.

It can reach 16-20 inches at the shoulder and weighs between 18-40 pounds with a golden-brown coat and pointed ears.

The owner of the 40-pound cat said she’s submissive and not a threat but a nearby school had to lock their doors for the day to keep kids inside for safety.

“She's like a family pet, she just lives in the house and everything,” said Riley Gibbs, the caracal’s owner.

Gibbs said when he woke up this morning, the screen window was open and the cat was gone.

Thankfully, about 4 p.m. Ameera was found. Gibbs thinks she ran away because she was scared from last night's thunderstorm. 

Gibbs said Ameera is not dangerous. He also insisted he's not breaking the law by having her. 

"She'd be really scared and intimidated right now if anyone came across her. She's like the size of a bobcat but littler. But she won't come up to anyone by any means," Gibbs said. 

In Swartz Creek, not everyone was reassured about the gentleness of the giant cat. 

Just down the road, Morrish Elementary issued what they call a "shelter-in-place" notice. That means they locked their doors and the students and staff remained inside. 

Police were on scene during pickup to make sure the students went home safely. 

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