A handout image of the lion cub made available by local veterinarian Peter Klaver [AFP]
Dutch police are looking for the owners of a small lion cub, found abandoned in a cage in a field outside the central city of Utrecht, police and news reports said.
“Today (Sunday) we received quite an extraordinary message: ‘a witness has found a mini-lion in a cage in a pasture’,” the police said on their Facebook page.
“When we arrived at the scene, we discovered a lion cub in a cage. It seems to have been abandoned,” the police said, estimating the little feline to be about four months old.
The cub was first spotted by a jogger near the small village of Tienhoven, about 10 kilometres north of Utrecht, a local news report said.
Vanochtend kregen de collega’s een wel hele bijzondere melding in Tienhoven. 🤨🦁 Iets gezien of gehoord?. Laat het ons weten #tienhoven #gevonden #getuigenoproep #politie https://t.co/g1n5VgJbn5 pic.twitter.com/HyVbgp2Izk
— PolitieStichtseVecht (@PolitieStiVe) 7 October 2018
The cub was first taken for examination by a veterinarian and later transported to the Lion Foundation in the northern Netherlands, the NOS public broadcaster said.
Meanwhile, local police and the Dutch food and goods watchdog appealed to the public for information leading to the lion cub’s owners.
“If you know anybody who recently bought a lion cub, or know anything about this particular cub, please contact us immediately,” police said.