The night shift in Stockbridge, Georgia received several calls from motorists reporting an adult tiger roaming the streets near the I-75 interstate in the early hours of Wednesday.
The tiger that escaped in Atlanta - and was shot and killed by police - was a 6-year-old star in Ringling Bros.
Suzy was part of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus act and last performed in May during their final run on New York's Long Island.
"When Feld sentenced these tigers to a miserable life in a German circus, this tiger's fate was sealed", Winders said.
The female Bengal tiger was being transported from Florida to Memphis when she got loose in Henry County.
Brittney Speck, the homeowner in question, awoke to high-beam lights shining through her windows at shortly before 6:30 a.m. Speck said her dog was going insane in the backyard and barking loudly.
She said she immediately went to check on the Dachshund and saw the tiger in her neighbor's yard, close to her own. A worker at a Hardees location nearby says a man who was in the parking lot told her the tiger was on the loose when she arrived for work just before 4 a.m. "I know some people are angry that the animal was shot, they don't understand why".
The truck belonging to Feld Entertainment Inc., which was transporting the tiger, had stopped overnight in Georgia and the animal had escaped without anyone noticing, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources said Wednesday.
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(Smith) "Unfortunately the tiger did jump the fence in the back residence here and attacked an animal". "I'm sure she's had better mornings", Speck said.
Brittany Speck, who's dachshund Journey was attacked said that her dog was "going insane in the backyard", and that she had called 911 when she spotted the tiger.
"By the time (the tiger) had jumped on my dog, the officer had started firing rounds".
Mentioning the small size of her dog as compared to a tiger, she said she would have to have a word with Journey about standing up to tigers.
Gerri Yoder, Henry County's animal control director, told the Journal-Constitution that she has "no idea where [the tiger] belonged". "This is a sad day". This tiger was raised by its owner since it was a cub.
"An examination of the large cat revealed a microchip, which was matched to the number held by Feld Entertainment", DNR officials said.
There were no reported injuries during the incident, authorities said. The Department of Natural Resources said the investigation is ongoing.