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Lion sighting? That's a bulldog!

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Trigger-happy resident shoots stray dog in paw

A bulldog in Milwaukee, US, was shot after it was mistaken for a lion that was reported to have been prowling the streets, the authorities said on Wednesday.

The dog with one blue eye was shot in the right paw on Tuesday. It had been about 3.2km from the reported lion sighting, said officials.

The dog, whose owner has not been found, was expected to make a full recovery, Reuters reported.

"It's ludicrous. It's not tall and not anywhere near the size of a lion," said Ms Karen Sparapani, director of the Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission.

She said the dog was an American bulldog that now faces six to eight weeks of recovery.

Police say they responded on Tuesday evening to a "loose animal complaint" where someone reported seeing a lion or cougar walking past his house, reported Milwaukee newspaper the Journal Sentinel.

While responding to that complaint, police also took another call reporting that someone had fired a gun at a stray dog in the area.

The person who shot the dog has not been identified, police said.

A mobile phone video clip had surfaced showing the blurry image of a large cat-like animal on the move, heightening fear and speculation.

"It's not outside the realm of possibility that someone could try to raise a lion in their basement and then get overwhelmed with the care," Ms Sparapani said.

On its Twitter account, the Milwaukee Zoo said all its lions were accounted for.

Police said they received about two dozen telephone calls since Monday reporting lion sightings.

Every call was investigated, but no such animal has been found.

"Animal experts have advised that no attempts should be made to capture the animal, as it may be a dangerous predator," police said.

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