Hundreds of emergency workers and group of professional animal hunters near Paris have been following a trail of paw prints left by what was first thought to be a tiger on the loose.
A set of fuzzy photos sent authorities into overdrive looking for a big scary cat roaming free and heading for the centre of the French capital.
Frightened schoolchildren played indoors as a precaution as a heat-seeking helicopter joined the hunt.
One mother said: “I’m pretty calm, but my little boy had trouble sleeping that night … he has nightmares. So it was more difficult for him than for us.”
Authorities now believe the feline ‘beast’ may be nothing more than a lynx belonging to a private owner, or just a overweight domestic cat.