A tiger that was spotted roaming around Houston is safe and well, the city’s police department has said.
India, a nine-month-old tiger, had been spotted last Sunday in the west of the city and was nearly shot by an off-duty deputy.
Houston Police Department Commander Ron Borza said it was not clear where the tiger had been in the week since that sighting but the owner, whose name he gave as Gia, had brought the animal to police.
It was unclear how this had come about but Cdr Borza said: “In no way, shape or form should you have an animal like that in your household.
“That animal is only nine-months-old and it already weights 175lb (79kg). Full grown that animal can get to 600lb (270kg).
“It still has its claws and could do a lot of damage but luckily for us he’s very tame and he’s going to a sanctuary tomorrow where hopefully he’ll live his life in a safe environment.”
He said Gia was the tiger’s owner but her husband Victor had also been named as the tiger’s owner, although this was disputed by Victor’s lawyer.
Cdr Borza said Gia was not yet facing any criminal charges but he confirmed that keeping an animal such as a tiger within the city boundaries is illegal.
“I just wanted to get the tiger safe.
“I didn’t go into specifics with her… it’s still an ongoing investigation right now.”
He added: “I work out every day but that animal was extremely powerful – if he wanted to overcome you, he could do it instantly.
“You shouldn’t have that in your home – it’s also not good for the tiger: he should be out running around.”