A tiger spotted in the suburbs of Paris has kept residents inside their homes since Thursday, and authorities have launched a massive search to trap the wild animal.
A local woman was the first to alert the police about the big animal on the loose near a supermarket's car park in Montevrain, which lies east of Paris.
More than 100 police officers and firefighters armed with tranquilising guns and aided by a helicopter have been on the hunt for the tiger, but the animal continues to evade till early on Friday, as per reports.
The mayor's office sent out a message saying the animal was not "totally dangerous" as it was young.
"We don't believe this tiger is totally dangerous because if it's a young tiger, maybe approximately 70kg... maybe it's afraid... maybe he can come from a circus in the cities around Montevrain. We don't know," Cedric Tartaud, director of the mayor's office, told the BBC.
Residents have been asked to stay indoors and only travel in cars till the tiger is captured.
"We are calling on residents to be careful, not to leave their homes and to stay in their vehicles. Anyone who sees the tiger should call the police or the fire service," Town hall official Cedric Tartaud-Gineste said in his warning.
While there were initial doubts if the animal was really a tiger, several locals corroborated the version.
"It is a tiger, for sure, a dangerous animal," Pierre-Emmanuel Portheret, deputy chief of police in Seine-et-Marne, France, told ABC News.
It was believed that the tiger could have broken loose from the nearby cat park, but the park spokesperson said the animal did not to belong to them.
"It's too young to be ours. Our small tigers are taken care of by their parents and they wouldn't let that happen," a park spokeswoman told the channel.
An alert message has been shared on Montevrain's Facebook page.
"A young tiger was spotted this morning in the woods behind the tennis courts and the soccer field. The competent authorities (municipal police, firefighters, police, fire brigade) are on the premises and perimeter Security is assured.
"We urge you to be careful and not walk around the perimeter, which is safe since this morning. We keep you informed of the outcome of events. We repeat, avoid land walks and prefer traveling by car. If you see the tiger, emergency call 17, 18 or Hall ABSOLUTELY!Thank you for your extreme caution! Please share massive information for safety of all."
PETA activists have urged the authorities to "show restraint and compassion in dealing with this tiger on the loose".