PARIS, Ky. (WKYT) - Kentucky Fish and Wildlife officials shot and killed a mountain lion that was found in Bourbon County Monday afternoon.
Officials told WKYT's Sam Smith that a woman walking her dog near Redmon Road spotted the mountain lion. The dog might have spooked the mountain lion, which went into a tree.
The woman called animal control, but officials there told her "that's more than what we can handle, you need to call fish and wildlife."
Kentucky Fish and Wildlife program coordinator Steven Dobey said officers had to shoot the mountain lion because they didn't have tranquilizers with them. He said it was nearly dark and if they waited for someone to bring them tranquilizers, the animal could have gotten away and posed a danger to the public.
"The decision was made to euthanize the animal. It was the right decision," said Dobey.
Fish and Wildlife officials examined the mountain lion Tuesday afternoon. They said it was a 125-pound male. They weren't sure how old it was, but said it appeared to be fairly young.
Mountain lions are rare in Kentucky. Dobey said this was the first adult mountain lion they've captured in Kentucky since before the Civil War. He said someone ran over a juvenile mountain lion in the late 90s.
Wildlife veterinarian Iga Stasiak said the mountain lion appeared to be in good shape. She said it didn't appear the animal had roamed from someplace far away. Investigators will try to figure out where the cat came from. They're not sure whether the animal was wild or had been kept as a pet. They say it became illegal to own mountain lions in Kentucky in 2005, though some owners were grandfathered in.