Patch Reader Tells About Her Ironic Sighting of 'The Big Cat'

North Canton resident Jeannene Blate shares her humorous story of seeing the mountain lion that's reportedly made the city its home this summer

Not a lot of folks would walk away from a mountain lion or cougar sighting with a smile on their faces.

But Jeannene Blate did.

The North Canton Patch reader reported seeing a mountain lion or cougar in her yard in the past week. (She's not the only one, either. Chief Stephan Wilder last week after three people reported seeing a large cat in the area.)

Blate wrote in to North Canton Patch to share the story of her sighting — a humorous one, we might add.

Read on for a laugh.

As Steve (my husband), Michele (my daughter) and I had just finished dinner, I was reading them the article in the paper about (we were there when police, FBI, etc. were there) and then I read the article on the . 

At that time Coconut (our dog) was frantically wanting to go out. I laughingly said, "Coconut, go find an elephant.” I watched him go over to the steps, which lead to the wooded area on the hill. He usually is chasing a chipmunk so he is looking at the area eye level to himself.

Not this time.

He was looking up the hill and definitely not at the ground. So, being silly, I said, "I really should take my camera out to see the 'Big Cat.' I didn’t but did go out to see why the dog was so upset.

I walked over to Coconut, looked up, and oh my gosh there was the “Cat” staring right at both of us. He raised his paws and hissed at me and this grandma ran. If I had my camera, I would not have stayed long enough to take a picture. They usually are nocturnal but that area above us is only inhabited by wildlife. Every once in a while, we will hear children up there playing “cops and robbers." ... Boy, does that date me. 

The “Cat” is mangy looking, about the size of a smaller German Shepard, color grayish-brown. It is frightening looking. As I write this I am sitting at the dining room table facing the wooded area, camera ready to take a picture. I feel safe as I am behind the windows.

I did call the sheriff's department. I hesitated doing it but with Steve and Michele saying I did have an obligation to the people in our neighborhood, the call was made. A sheriff's deputy arrived and he was such a pleasant fun guy. He had his gun as he went up the hill. He came down empty handed and kept saying to me, "I really believe you, even if I personally did not see it.” He told me he thought he might have to make a sketch of the cat hissing at me. 

It is a good story. We had our laughs. But will I be going out watering flowers in the evening? Don’t think so. I will take my watch dog out with me whenever and I am sure he will alert me.

JV August 08, 2012 at 05:35 PM
If we see it wil that be a death sentence for this poor scared "kitty"? I don't want anyone or pets to get hurt but I don't want it to be killed either.
Kristen August 08, 2012 at 06:01 PM
If its mangy looking then it probably isn't in too good of health. I haven't heard of any pets going missing or being hurt so it's not creating much of a disturbance. Although unsafe for a cougar to be wandering through the area I would hope they wouldn't kill it on site. Hopefully the officer only had his gun drawn in case it attacked. Poor thing...some idiot probably had it as a pet and let it loose.
Mary Lynne Zahler August 08, 2012 at 06:23 PM
Hopefully trapping and moving this displaced animal is the goal, not killing it. That should be a last resort measure.
Arturistar August 09, 2012 at 01:11 AM
I agree with everyone who thinks the big cat should not be killed --- only relocated to a safe place for the cat and people. I almost feel sorry for the poor cat. He/she must be scared and hungry. I hope this has a happy ending.
Ann Marie August 09, 2012 at 03:25 AM
I see no humor as this poor animal is running loose out there and scared. I also hope too that they would try to catch this animal and find a place to take the poor thing. There is a beautiful animal sanctuary, Noahs Lost Ark in Berlin, Ohio that takes anything from lions to bears. They have alot of big cats. The animals are so well taken care of it is amazing. Maybe, if this cat is caught, they will take it in.


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