‘We got him:’ 9-month-old tiger spotted on front lawn found safe, police say

No charges have been filed against owner

Tiger that roamed neighborhood located, taken to sanctuary
Tiger that roamed neighborhood located, taken to sanctuary

HOUSTON – Houston police announced Saturday night that the missing tiger seen in a Houston neighborhood has been found.

Officials said India the tiger appears to be unharmed, according to News 6 partner KPRC-TV.

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The exotic animal was transferred to a BARC animal shelter, according to the Houston Police Department. On Sunday morning, the tiger will be transported to an animal sanctuary, The Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch in Murchison, Texas.

Black Beauty Ranch is one of the oldest animal sanctuaries in the U.S. India’s habitat will be half an acre big.

“These animals while they are beautiful and majestic, they are wild,” a spokesperson with the sanctuary said. “You cannot tame a tiger just by raising them from a baby.”

India the tiger preparing to be transferred to animal sanctuary. (KPRC)

In a video posted after 8 p.m. Saturday, HPD Commander Ron Borza is seen with the owner petting and feeding the tiger. He said he allowed the owner to come along because the animal has been “obviously agitated.”

“The animal likes attention, but in no way shape or form should you have an animal like that in your household,” he said.

Currently, no charges have been filed against the owner, who is reportedly the wife of Victor Cuevas, the man seen with the tiger earlier this week.

Borza said there is “no way” that a tiger should be kept inside a home. He said the 9-month-old tiger weighs 175 pounds and could get as heavy as 600 pounds.

“Lucky for us, he is very trained,” he said.

Houston police said the owner handed the tiger over in west Houston after the owner’s friend spoke with BARC.

The investigation remains ongoing, and the owner may be brought in for questions at a later date, Borza said. He added that a group of six officers searched for the tiger over the last week.

“Things turned out really well, but (I) also want the public to know that at no time did we shut anything down with HPD,” Borza said. “We did what we had to do. It all worked out very well, and I am happy that It ended this way.”

On Friday, Houston police said they have had “no luck” finding India the tiger since the animal went missing Sunday after it was removed from a home in west Houston.

Borza said during a news conference that officers at HPD alone have fielded 200 to 300 phone calls about the case and have found nothing. He said BARC is also working the phones and has received the same number of calls or more without results.