CNN — A wild cat rescued in Cincinnati had been exposed to cocaine.
The exotic cat – known as a serval – tested positive for cocaine after being rescued, according to animal control officials. Servals are medium-sized wild cats native to sub-Saharan Africa.
The serval, named Amiry, was rescued at the end of January after escaping from a vehicle during a police stop and climbing a tree, according to a March 9 Facebook post from Cincinnati Animal CARE, which responded to the incident.
Ray Anderson, the shelter’s community engagement manager, told CNN that the cat’s owner had been pulled over by police for an unrelated traffic violation.
Hamilton County Dog Wardens, a division of Cincinnati Animal CARE, worked to retrieve the “highly agitated, highly upset” serval from the tree. The cat fell from the tree during the rescue attempt and fractured his leg, according to Anderson.
At the shelter, staff set about determining just what kind of cat the feline was, according to the Facebook post. They took a sample for a DNA test – and also tested him for narcotics.
Drug testing rescue animals is a fairly new procedure for the shelter, according to the Facebook post.
They started regularly testing exotic animals for narcotics after a incident last year in which they seized a capuchin monkey named Neo tested positive for methamphetamine.
The testing confirmed that Amiry was indeed a serval, which are illegal to own in Ohio, and that he had been exposed to cocaine.
Anderson told CNN that the shelter was unable to disclose how much cocaine Amiry had ingested while an investigation into the case is ongoing.
In the Facebook post, the shelter said Amiry’s owner cooperated with the investigation and relinquished the cat into the shelter’s custody …
The Ohio Dangerous Wild Animals Act prohibits the possession of servals …