A couple of Texas tokers got an unexpected encounter with exotic wildlife last week when they entered an abandoned residence in southeast Houston to smoke marijuana and discovered a large female tiger inside of a cage in the garage.
The cage was not locked, and the only things securing the garage door were a nylon strap and a screwdriver.
The individuals, who have not been identified, initially thought that they were hallucinating when they first saw the large feline. Out of concern for the animal’s poor living conditions, they called Houston police who asked them if they were under the effects of drugs or had actually seen a real tiger.
“A pretty small cage inside basically a garage in a house that didn’t look like it was in the best shape,” Houston Chief of Staff Lara Cottingham told KPRC. “So it was important that we get it out of that situation.”
While the animal did not appear to be aggressive, it was tranquilized before being transported to the BARC animal shelter at 3300 Carr Street in Houston for temporary keeping.
After communication with BARC, employees from a wildlife refuge that specializes in big cats arrived up at the facility on Tuesday morning to take the tiger to her permanent home.
It is illegal to own exotic wildlife, such as tigers, in the city of Houston.
Image: Lara Cottingham
Updated 2/12 12:05