“Be very, very careful:” After seeing video, big cat expert thinks ‘Milwaukee Lion’ is a cougar, and a pet

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MILWAUKEE -- Since receiving an initial call on Monday, July 20th regarding a possible lion near Garfield and Palmer in Milwaukee, MPD has taken about two dozen calls from concerned citizens who say they've seen the lion. MPD says all reported sightings have been on the city's north side -- and officers have investigated each call. So far, nothing has been found. Is it possible the 'Milwaukee Lion' is in someone's basement? That's what one large cat expert says could be the case. Not because it's hiding there -- but because that's its home.

The possible lion in Milwaukee was captured on video -- but only for a couple of seconds.

One exotic feline expert says that video could contain the clues that could help solve this mystery.

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Jill Carnegie has been taking care of big cats for the last 43 years -- at "Valley of the Kings."

"We only have 10 acres, but everybody fits. We just take in the misfits from all over," Carnegie said.

Valley of the Kings is home for dozens of exotic felines.

While not on her property -- Carnegie says she knows exactly what has been seen in Milwaukee.

"I feel very confident it is a male cougar. You tell by the size. It's a very well-fed cougar," Carnegie said.

Carnegie says while the species has been seen in Wisconsin before, she doubts a possible mountain lion on the loose in Milwaukee has lived its life in the wild.

"I believe truly that it is somebody's pet," Carnegie said.

In fact, several of the cats in her sanctuary once lived in basements -- including a mountain lion picked up during a drug raid in Chicago.

"We get them from governmental seizures, people's ex pets," Carnegie said.

Carnegie says she would expect a wild cat to look leaner -- and the video was filmed at an odd time. The video was recorded at around 10:00 a.m. Monday -- at a time when wild cats tend to be laying low.

Carnegie says there is a real possibility the cat is back at a home where it came from -- but if it is still on the loose, Carnegie says it should be taken seriously.

"Cougars are very dangerous with children, pets. Kids should be inside. If you have your dog outside, bring him in the house. Be very, very careful," Carnegie said.

Meanwhile, an MPD spokesman said this in a statement to FOX6 News Wednesday evening:

"MPD officers have been advised that, if a lion is located, they should not attempt to capture it but should call for additional resources who will follow the animal until it can safely be put down.

Animal experts have advised that no attempts should be made to capture the animal, as it may be a dangerous predator.

It is the priority of the Milwaukee Police Department to maintain the safety of the public and of our officers at all times."


    • Lion's Brother Simba



    • Pam

      I’m glad that Fox consulted someone familiar with big cats, because I also think it’s a cougar. Maybe it’s a pet, but it also may be the same cougar that a lot of people have seen in and near Milwaukee over the past few years. I saw that cat myself, in the middle of the night crossing I-894. I can’t imagine what it’s been eating to get so much bigger. Hopefully it’s not responsible for house pets that have gone missing.

      Or maybe this expert is correct and it’s a pet. Problem with large and exotic pets is that when they get too large to handle, sometimes their owners drive them to the woods and release them. In Wisconsin it isn’t illegal to own exotic pets, and so there’s no excuse for not calling around and finding a home for unwanted pets. That’s one reason I’m concerned about the new proposed law — it’ll just encourage people to opt for releasing their pets because they won’t want to get into trouble for having them.

      • Lion's Brother Simba

        You’ve been DUPED!!! Biggest HOAX in Milwaukee HISTORY

  • Robert

    Let’s take a closer look at the video. Did anybody noticed the cyclone fence the so called lion is walking behind. Most cyclone fences are around 4 foot high. See the orange flowers above the bush. This bush the so called lion walks behind looks like day lilies which are about 2 1/2 feet tall. My guess that this is just someone’s house cat.

    • Brittany

      Those aren’t day lilies… they are tiger lilies. They are all over the place. I’m 5 feet tall and some of those lilies are taller than me. I’ve seen cougars before, and to me that looks pretty dead on. The only thing is I can’t see the black tip on the tail. Cougars have a pretty distinct look, and it’s nothing like a house cat.

    • Lion's Brother Simba

      Did you happen to see the PALM TREE? This day and age VIdeo Cams work better, don’t be fooled ya knuckleheads!! You’ve been duped, so has the MSM and Police…HOAXy the lion.
      Get on with your life, if you have one.

  • Hailey Thomas

    Can anybody please call animal services and pick that huge cat up. I can’t believe people still have the audacity to make big cats their pets. Have them placed on Jill’s sanctuary instead. They’re endangering the community.

    • Leo

      This story will simply DISAPPEAR from the headlines soon. Why? Because it’s NOT TRUE.
      The only day people question headlines is April FOOOOOLS Day. You should be skeptical more often instead of believing everything you see for the first time..WAKE UP, you’ve been duped!

  • Melanie

    Does this “expert” realize that it is summer, all cougars are heavier during summer months as they have a better food supply during warmer months in Wisconsin! New expert please, clearly she is being paid off by the HSUS so they can push new Bills! We have a number of cougars in WI, they move around a lot, remember the one found in the twin cities a few yrs back? it made it through 3 states in a matter of days! It is not unheard of to see these cats in a city, people build and take away their homes, they get lost and end up in a city but move out of it quickly. This expert is full of it! Keep in mind, HSUS is being investigated, they have been charged with conspiracy and racketeering just to name a few.. http://www.911animalabuse.org humanewatch.org .. HSUS wants all pet ownership to stop, even dogs, they believe there should be no animal farms and everyone should be vegan.. they are just like peta, only in business suits! I highly suggest Milwaukee talk to a REAL expert who is not being paid by the HSUS to make some phony report!

    • Sam

      Actually there aren’t that many cougars in WI, and definitely in Milwaukee. First off cougars of Wisconsin live up North, and an adult cougar could not support itself in such a city like area. Also it is very probable that this is a persons pet, or that this footage isn’t even from WI.

  • iz

    Hi. Yes. I’m pretty upset about the stupidity and ignorance of certain people making a mockery of a live lion on the loose in mi. Heck, as a supporter of MLF and a resident of northern il, I believe it was probably a mountain lion. I’m so happy to imagine this species making a comeback in the midwest. I did help vote on the protection of them with Pat Quinns last year. I keep on telling my six year old son, whom is also intrigued….who knows one day there could be one in our backyard. Always look up when you’re playing near the woods. And yes, always be careful of small kids and animals. Look bigger be loud and never turn your back on it or run away. I hope if Wisconsin finds him, they will tranquilize and release safely. What an exciting idea. Thanks, Liz Heim

    • Croptastical!

      That’s nice. But if I find it, I’m going to marinade it and slow-roast it over an open fire!

    • iz

      I’m so excited there have been more sightings and the DNR and police are involved. As I always stated its not a joke or a hoax. I was just hoping it’d turn up in our branch of the woods. It’s got to be a male as males traverse through territory. Females stay close to mom and original habitat. But… You guys have had at least three sightings recently and the last trail cam I viewed from March they saw one. I see three cougars in the video.

      • iz

        Once again confident and happy about my response. Thank God there was a sighting in mi and two in Wisconsin a few days before all this started. Hopefully the mountain lion has enough sense to get the hell out of your state becausethe people are so tough and don’t believe and would probably get killed before it attacked someone in self defense. Run cougar run! There will be many more Wi coming.

    • Elizabeth

      Stop feeding the conspiracy with your tall tales and story’s of your past. You’re just creating more garbage for people to read that may not even be true. It’s a HOAX and quit freaking out your kids unknowingly. cripes!

  • Native Colorado

    We live with mountain lions in Colorado. I see them often in urban locations. Please don’t kill it. Bring your pets indoors at night, keep an eye on your children, and petite women. :)

  • Lion's Brother Simba



  • Lion's Brother Simba

    Yeah be verrrrrrrrrrrry careful when hunting a HOAX lion

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