On Thursday, a woman in San Jacinto dropped off a baby Bengal tiger at the Ramona Humane Society animal shelter.
Though unusual, the Ramona Humane Society agreed to take the 3-month-old, 25-pound male tiger. The anonymous woman had apparently found the exotic kitten roaming around her neighborhood.
Not long after the baby tiger was dropped off, the shelter got in touch with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, which sent an agent to check on the welfare of the wild cat.
The mysterious cub was deemed to be in good condition, though animals experts discovered that the Bengali tiger cub had been declawed and was suffering from a hernia. The tiger cub will have to undergo surgery to remove the hernia from his abdomen.
“It was an exciting day today at Ramona Humane Society. As an open admission shelter we [accept] all animals including this tiger found in our community,” the Ramona Humane Society said on its Facebook page.
The animal shelter also posted a video of the cub on its Facebook, showing the young tiger playing and drinking water from a plastic bin.
The tiger has since been transferred to the Forever Wild Exotic Animal Sanctuary in Phelan. The animal sanctuary is home to several tigers.
It remains unclear just where the tiger cub came from, though it is possible that the exotic animal was purchased illegally by someone who wanted to keep the cat as a pet. However, it is illegal (and highly unadvisable) to have a tiger as a pet in the state of California.
Photo credit: NBC4