A sniffer dog made a shocking discovery during a routine security check.
By, 18 Apr 2019
The German Shepherd, who works for the Mexican office for environmental protection, was nosing around for some contraband when it picked an unusual scent.
It was coming from a blue plastic container and officers were shocked when they saw what was inside. Expecting to find drugs or some other banned items, they couldn't believe their eyes when they saw a Bengal tiger cub.
An unusual discovery
Someone had attempted to mail the cub from the western state of Jalisco to an address in the central state of Queretaro. And although the tiger's paperwork appeared legitimate, officers seized the cub under animal welfare laws.
The Mexico Federal police posted a picture of the cub on Facebook. They also wrote:
"With the support of canine officers, members of the federal forces division detected a plastic box with 'Atypical' content in a parcel company of the truck station in Jalisco.”
"During the inspection, we discovered that inside the box was a Bengal tiger approximately two months old who intended to be illegally transferred and under poor conditions for the animal."
The animal was heavily sedated and left with no food or water.
The case is still under investigation.
A special creature that belongs in the wild
Bengal Tigers are one of the largest and most iconic big cats. They've been on the endangered species list since 2008 and there are only 2,500 left in the wild.
Some countries allow people to keep tigers as pets, while in others the issue remains unregulated. Tiger cubs can be sold for as much as £8,000.
UK citizens must apply for permission from the local authority under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976. Applications are rarely successful and for good reasons. Keeping a pet tiger is not only extremely dangerous, but it's also cruel and inhumane. The vast majority of animal experts would recommend against keeping these powerful predators as pets.