The country woke this morning to an exciting bit of news... Nestled in amongst the sports, weather, politics and criminal justice reports was this one:
Panjo the Tiger is wandering loose somewhere in Mpumalanga! He escaped from the back of his owner's bakkie while en route to a vet and (miraculously) managed to escape being hit by a passing motorist or causing a multi-car pile up.
He is a 17 month old "tame" Bengal tiger who has been kept as a "pet" and a local TV newscaster advised (and I'm NOT joking) that anyone who spots Panjo should do the following....
Shake a stick at him.
Give him a bit of chicken.
Call the owner to let her know where you spotted Panjo.
Now - I'm not an expert on Tigers and have never kept one as a pet ... but I strongly suspect that if I met Panjo while on my way to the supermarket .... I might not be able to muster sufficient meaningful authority in my tone for the word "no" to send him on his way?
Also - I'm a bit concerned that a Bengal tiger might require a bit more sustenance than a chicken wing?
Jokes aside - the Pet Fairy is sending lots of positive thoughts into the ether that Panjo is found before some eager beaver with a gun decides to pot him for his trophy wall or he eats something he shouldn't!
Here's a toast to pet ownership in South Africa - very much like the country itself - it's NOT for sissies!