Giant 'Cougar' Causes Panic After Being Spotted On Garage Roof
On Monday morning an Oregon woman went outside for a smoke break, before fleeing in terror after noticing she was being watched by a huge 'cougar' sitting on her neighbour's roof. A harrowing tale... but there's more to it than meets the eye.
Alysha Sifford told Oregon news outlet KMTR: "I was going out to start my cigarette when I saw it staring right at me.
"He or she looked mad. It stayed on the roof and watched me for a minute. I'm not afraid personally, just alarmed."
Local media picked up the story and warned people to be on the lookout for a particularly mean-looking 'cougar', but when the news reached Alysha's neighbour John Forrest, all he could do was laugh.
Forrest explained that the so-called cougar was actually a stuffed lion, and that he'd put it on the roof himself.
"It's my resin lion," he told KMTR.
"We thought it was kind of cool so we mounted it on the roof."
He put it up with his friend Dean Panther as a marketing gimmick for Treasures Trondhjem, an antique business he runs out of his garage, and claims the lion has been a real boon for business since he put it up just over two months ago.
He continued: "Somebody posted a picture a couple of days ago. Thousands of people are reacting and sharing. It's my house. People are calling me a liar - [saying] that it is photoshopped.
"One lady was screaming at me not to come out of the garage because there is a cougar on the roof. She was on the phone with 9-1-1."
He's since put a picture of the plastic lion on his Facebook page so that people know how to identify his business and let them know that it's safe to come close.
"I've been enjoying reading about it," Forrest said.
When questioned about the incident, local Police Chief Bob Webb stated that nothing Forrest was doing was illegal and that the lion is free to stay on his home for as long as he wants.
"I'm not aware of any law that would bar you from keeping a fake cougar or snake on your roof," Webb said. "There are people that put carved bears in their front yard but there is nothing criminal about it."
Oregon is well-known as a cougar-heavy state, which is why the sighting has caused so much trepidation amongst locals. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife estimates there are more than 6,600 cougars in the state.
Featured Image Credit: Alysha Sifford