FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A kangaroo named Jack was just exploring the neighborhood outback of his home north of downtown Fort Lauderdale until police jumped in and captured him for safety’s sake.
Jack went peacefully into the back of a patrol car to the barn where the police department’s horses are kept.
“He’s so nice,” owner Anthony Macias said. “He doesn’t mean anyone any harm.”
The marsupial was first spotted about one block from his home, hopping along the 1600 block of North Andrews Avenue about 9:30 a.m. It was followed to the 1300 block of Northeast Second Avenue.
“I was taking out the recycle bin and I didn’t shut the gate all the way,” Macias said. “I guess he just punched his way through.”
Fort Lauderdale Police Officer Robert Norvis answered the Signal 69 call, which usually means a dog or cat got loose.
“At first we didn’t believe it,” he said. “But when we got there it, sure enough, was a kangaroo.”
Police corralled Jack, put him into a police car and drove off.
“He’s very friendly,” Norvis said.
Macias got the kangaroo about four months ago from a man who was moving from his home in Davie and didn’t want Jack anymore. The 2-year-old kangaroo has been living in the backyard of Macias’ home and gets along great with Corgi Max.
“They love each other,” Macias said. “They play and run around.”
Macias orders kangaroo food online and supplements that with grass, apples, potatoes, corn and other vegetables. Jack also has a little canopy and shed in the backyard where he can take shelter from the heat.
Macias was at work when he learned Jack was out and about and he contacted police. He plans to contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to find out what permits and licensing he needs for an exotic animal.
“It’s a jungle out there,” Mayor Dean Trantalis said. “How bizarre for someone to keep a wild animal in their house. Maybe it will end up at one of our zoos. I’m hoping they find a safe place for it.”
Story by Wayne K. Roustan of the Sun Sentinel. Sun Sentinel reporter Susannah Bryan contributed to this report. Courtesy of AP Wire.