‘She’s out on her own’: China Grove couple search for missing exotic African cat

CHINA GROVE, N.C. — A China Grove couple is worried for their pet cat -- an African serval -- that has been missing for a week now.

Jim and Linnie Williams said “Jemma” slipped out the door, got startled and took off.

“I just want her home, we miss her a lot,” Linnie Williams said. “She’s just a very, very sweet baby and she’s out on her own.”

They believe the animal is still in the area, based off of information from a tracker they brought in. They are hoping to get the word out so she doesn’t get hit by a car or hurt.

“She does look like a wild cat, and people could misread what she is and harm her thinking she is a bobcat or anything like that,” Williams said. “She’s just a big baby, she’s never been aggressive.”

African servals are larger than house cats. The animal is tall with long ears.

She eats rodents and birds and is great around people and dogs, Williams said.

Jemma is wearing a harness and if you see her, the Williams said you should not approach her because she will probably run off.

There is a reward for finding her and if you see Jemma, you can call 704-713-2995.

The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission told Channel 9 there’s nothing unlawful about owning an African serval in the state.