There it was, a tiger in Paris, out in the open in a residential area less than three miles away from Disneyland Paris.
Once the tiger was spotted by the unsuspecting grocery shopper, Paris officials jumped into action, reportedly ringing alarm bells to try to scare the tiger out of hiding. Residents have been warned to stay indoors, and officers have been placed at schools to guard students.
As officials continue to track the big cat, they are armed with tranquilizers and specialized dogs, called Karelian dogs, which are used to hunt aggressive big animals like wild boar.
The chief of staff for the mayor of Montevrain, Cedric Tartaud, is trying to calm frayed nerves by downplaying the tiger's danger to local residents.
latest on tiger on the loose near #Paris : just spoken to cedric tartaud of Montevrain mayor's office who says it's 'not totally dangerous'— Ben Brown (@BenBrownBBC) November 13, 2014
In the meantime, sightings from the surrounding area continue to be shared on social media.
As for where the tiger escaped from, that continues to be a mystery. A local zoo specializing in big cats says all its animals are accounted for. Euro Disney officials say they don't keep tigers in captivity.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is asking officials to show mercy in dealing with the frightened animal.
"PETA urges authorities to show restraint and compassion in dealing with this tiger on the loose," a PETA spokesperson says. "Tigers who are relegated to prisonlike cages in zoos and circuses are ticking time bombs.
"This situation, however upsetting, is entirely preventable and should serve as a wake-up call to the public about the perils of keeping wild animals in captivity. PETA will be calling on the courts to punish the people responsible for putting this animal and Parisians in harm's way."
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