Atlanta Woman Startled By Wild Cat in Her Bed

Serval that wandered into house likely someone's illegal exotic pet
By Liz MacGahan,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2021 2:08 PM CDT
Atlanta Woman Startled By Wild Cat in Her Bed
File photo of a pet serval cat.   (City of Virginia Beach via AP)

David Frank woke up before 7 one morning last week and opened the back door for the dog. That was the last normal thing to happen that morning. His wife, Kristine, felt a cat—a really big cat—jump up on the bed. But the Franks don’t have a cat. What they did have was an open door for a cat to explore, and a wild serval did just that, the Marietta Daily Journal reports. The big, wild cat—servals are native to Africa and can stand a couple feet tall and weigh 30-40 pounds—had been spotted in their Atlanta neighborhood a few times before turning up on the Franks’ bed.

Kristine’s understandably startled reaction scared the cat off the bed. She was able to inch out of the room and close the door behind her, CNN reports. "Afterwards I was like, 'Was that a bobcat? Was it a leopard? Was it a baby? Was it a mom?'" Kristine said. While there is no federal law against keeping a serval as a pet, it is illegal in Georgia. And not just because it’s dangerous for humans. Alicia Prygoski of the Animal Legal Defense Fund said that wild cats like servals shouldn’t be kept in homes because there’s no room for them to exhibit their natural behaviors. Authorities are trying to catch the big cat and take it to a sanctuary. (More weird news stories.)

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