These images show a rare ringtail cat that was found squatting in a clothing store in Colorado for three weeks and it survived on a diet of ceiling tiles and shoe boxes.
The footage shows the animal in a cage after it was ‘apprehended’ by cops at Kohl’s department store.
The officer filming the animal can be heard calling the nervous-looking animal a “Kohl’s ringtail cat”, adding that it had taken up residence in the department store “for about three weeks”.
The cop jokingly adds: “He was found in the shoe department because he wanted some Sketchers, but that’s not a great place for him, so we brought him out here to beautiful Jefferson County.
“We’re gonna release it and let him go on his way.”
The incident took place in Jefferson County in southern Colorado, and the video starts with the animal nervously at the back of the cage, placed on the snow. While the moment it broke for freedom was not recorded, it is later seen with its head poking up from a burrow where it has apparently taken refuge.
The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement obtained by Newsflash on Monday, 9th January: “It’s a raccoon… it’s a cat… it’s a catcoon?! No, it’s a ringtail cat!
“This little guy was hiding out in the shoe depart in a Kohls store for 3 weeks. Eating ceiling tiles and shoe boxes, he would sneak in and out of our cat traps to get the food without tripping the mechanism.
“The secretive creature was carefully collected and released into the nearby woods. Ringtail cats are not cats but are related to raccoons. The nocturnal ringtail, although native to Colorado, is a rare sight to see – but don’t touch; they are wild. Take a photo instead.”
The ringtail (Bassariscus astutus) is a mammal of the raccoon family native to arid regions of North America.
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Story By: Joseph Golder, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
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