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80-pound pet cougar kept illegally removed from apartment in Bronx

Pet Cougar Removed
Posted at 10:56 AM, Aug 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-31 13:56:57-04

An 80-pound cougar was removed from an apartment in the Bronx by officials Thursday who says she was kept as a pet illegally.

According to a Humane Society of the United States press release, the 11-month-old female was surrendered to them by the owner.

The animal was then taken to the Bronx Zoo, "where she was cared for by veterinarians and animal care staff over the weekend."

She was then transported to an Arkansas animal sanctuary on Monday.

"This cougar is relatively lucky that her owners recognized a wild cat is not fit to live in an apartment or any domestic environment," Kelly Donithan, director of animal disaster response for the Humane Society of the United States, said in the news release. "The owner’s tears and nervous chirps from the cougar as we drove her away painfully drives home the many victims of this horrendous trade and myth that wild animals belong anywhere but the wild."

Donithan said the cat's removal from the residence was coordinated alongside the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the New York Police Department, and zoo officials.