Tiger found in vacant Houston home

Tiger found in vacant Houston home

An anonymous tip from a "concerned citizen" led to the discovery of a tiger at a vacant home in Houston, Texas, US.

Officials said the house was empty - except for several packages of meat found near the tiger.

BARC Animal Shelter and Houston Police Department's Major Offender Animal Cruelty Unit tranquilized and rescued the tiger after obtaining a warrant from Houston police, and nicknamed the animal "Tyson" in reference to the movie "The Hangover".

After a neighbor contacted 311 anonymously, police and BARC were alerted to a report of a tiger inside a southeast Houston home.

It is now on its way to an undisclosed animal sanctuary while officers try to find its owner.

"A pretty small cage inside basically a garage in a house that didn't look like it was in the best shape".

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"We deal with, for the most part, puppies and kittens", said Cottingham.

"Finding a forever home for a tiger is not easy", said Heidi Krahn, executive director of the Center for Animal Research & Education.

Some tigers are smuggled into the USA from Mexico, and there are small pockets of breeding facilities across the country.

While the unexpected human-tiger encounter ended happily, authorities said it could have been much bloodier given the crude nature of the tiger's enclosure.

In a statement, the Houston Zoo said it will not be able to take the tiger.

"The Houston Zoo is aware of the tiger found in southeast Houston today, February 11; however, the Houston Zoo is not involved in this case, and is not receiving the tiger, as incorrectly reported". They are endangered - the WWF estimates there are fewer than 4,000 left in the wild.

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