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Georgia woman recalls terror after waking up to find African wildcat had crawled into her bed

‘That’s not a normal house cat!’ Georgia woman recalls terror after waking up to find an African wildcat had crawled into her bed

  • An Georgia woman woke up to find an African wildcat in her bed on Wednesday, with authorities warning locals that the animal is still on the loose
  • Kristine Frank, who lives in Atlanta, believes the serval got into her house after her husband left a door open while walking their dog
  • ‘I said, ‘That’s not a normal house cat. I don’t know what that is, but I am terrified right now,’ Frank told CNN  
  • Frank believes the wild animal was being kept as a pet nearby, however possessing such creatures are against Georgia state law
  • Meanwhile, the Department of Natural Resources, who are investigating the case, have been busy setting up traps in the neighborhood to catch the wildcat 
  •  Anyone who comes into contact with the serval is being told to steer clear of the animal while contacting animal control and the DNR

A Georgia woman had the scare of her life when she woke up to find an African wildcat in her bed on Wednesday, and authorities are warning locals that the animal is still on the loose.

Kristine Frank, who lives in the Brookhaven neighborhood in Atlanta, believes the serval, which is an exotic cat native to Africa, somehow got into her house after her husband left a door open while walking their dog. 

By the time she awoke, the wild feline was just inches from her face. 

‘I said, ‘That’s not a normal house cat. I don’t know what that is, but I am terrified right now,’ Frank told CNN.

‘Afterwards I was like, ‘Was that a bobcat? Was it a leopard? Was it a baby? Was it a mom?’ she questioned. 

An Georgia woman woke up to find a serval, which is a kind of African wildcat, in her bed on Wednesday, with authorities warning locals that the animal is still on the loose

Kristine Frank, who lives in Atlanta, believes the serval got into her house after her husband left a door open while walking their dog

Kristine Frank, who lives in Atlanta, believes the serval got into her house after her husband left a door open while walking their dog

Thinking quickly, Frank said she slowly got off of the bed and out of the bedroom before her husband bravely entered to open a window, which the serval eventually leapt out of. She then called animal control, who referred her to the Department of Natural Resources.

‘It still kind of terrifies me because that cat is illegal and there’s a reason it’s illegal. So I really don’t know what it’s capable of doing.’ 

Frank told the outlet that she believes the cat, which she said was about 2-and-a-half feet tall, was being kept as a pet nearby. Possessing such creatures are against the law in Georgia, according to the Animal League Defense Fund

Oddly enough, the ALDF states that while it is illegal in her home state, there are no federal laws prohibiting people from possessing such wild animals.

Alicia Prygoski, the organization’s Senior Legislative Affairs Manager, told CNN that Frank’s case highlights the reasons why big cats should be made illegal nationwide, as they pose significant risks to communities at large.

Senior Legislative Affairs Manager Alicia Prygoski said that Frank's case highlights the reasons why big cats should be made illegal nationwide, as they pose significant risks to communities

Senior Legislative Affairs Manager Alicia Prygoski said that Frank’s case highlights the reasons why big cats should be made illegal nationwide, as they pose significant risks to communities 

‘Wild cats are not meant for private possession,’ Prygoski told the outlet. 

‘The wild cat trade in this country is really not well regulated, which results in many species of wild cats, including servals, living out their lives in private homes which are not adequate environments for the natural behaviors that they exhibit.’

Meanwhile, the Department of Natural Resources, who are investigating the identity of the serval’s possible owners, have been setting traps throughout Frank’s Brookhaven neighborhood in an effort to safely capture the wildcat.

‘When law enforcement is hopefully able to trap her we hope that she is then set to an accredited sanctuary where she can live out the rest of her life in an appropriate habitat,’ Prygoski added.

Anyone who comes into contact with the serval is being told to steer clear of the animal while contacting animal control and the DNR. 

Servals are most commonly found in sub-Saharan regions of Africa, and is characterized by its small head, big ears, and distinctive spots and stripes pattern. 

The animals also have the longest legs relative to their body size of any species of cat, and are carnivores that usually hunt birds and small mammals. 

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