African Serval Cat with Cocaine in System Rescued and Taken to Cincinnati Zoo

An African ser­val cat that was found with cocaine in its sys­tem after escap­ing at a traf­fic stop has been tak­en to the Cincin­nati Zoo to live. The feline, named Amiry, made its escape when its own­er was pulled over by police on Jan. 28 and leapt from the car into a tree.

Local ani­mal con­trol offi­cials were called to the res­i­den­tial Oak­ley neigh­bor­hood around 2 a.m., and dur­ing the res­cue mis­sion, Amiry broke its leg and became more agitated. 

Once tak­en in for med­ical care by Cincin­nati Ani­mal CARE, a drug test was con­duct­ed, which revealed that Amiry had cocaine in its system.

The own­er relin­quished cus­tody of Amiry to Cincin­nati Ani­mal CARE, and the cat was tak­en into the care of the Cincin­nati Zoo. It is ille­gal to own ser­val cats in Ohio, and the ani­mals can weigh up to 40 pounds.

This is not the first time Cincin­nati Ani­mal CARE has had a wild ani­mal test pos­i­tive for drugs. The group took in a capuchin mon­key named Neo in 2022 that had metham­phet­a­mine in its sys­tem. Since then, it has become stan­dard pro­ce­dure for the shel­ter to test exot­ic ani­mals that arrive at the shel­ter for drugs.

Julie Shel­don, clin­i­cal assis­tant pro­fes­sor of zoo med­i­cine at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Ten­nessee, warned that ser­val cats are a major respon­si­bil­i­ty that require a bal­anced diet and spe­cial­ized care beyond that of a house cat. 

While ser­vals have grown in pop­u­lar­i­ty as pets and even appear in Tik­Tok videos, Shel­don advised that there are bet­ter, safer, and more sus­tain­able options for pets.

The sto­ry of Amiry the “cocaine cat” has been trend­ing online in the wake of the release of the film “Cocaine Bear,” a hor­ror com­e­dy based on the true sto­ry of a 175-pound black bear that was found dead near a duf­fle bag and some $2 mil­lion worth of cocaine.

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