Truth behind mystery of Highgate big cat is revealed

Its dusty yellow fur speckled with leopard print spots and tiger stripes resembles a wild cat straight out of the African desert.

But this mystery cat has been found far closer to home – prowling the streets of Highgate.

Bemused residents first spotted the un-familiar feline, known as the ‘Beast of Shepherd’s Hill’ in early July, but its origin remained a mystery – until now.

The Ham&High can now exclusively reveal that the exotic looking pet is in fact a Savannah cat – a designer feline thought to be worth thousands of pounds.

Will Newcomb, a Shepherd’s Hill resident who has seen the cat several times dating back to early July, said: “It is certainly the oddest looking cat we have ever seen round here.

“My neighbours and I have never seen anything like it. It looks like something straight out of the African desert.

“It just wanders into our house, although it doesn’t appear to be very friendly – when we approached it, it just ran off.”

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The puss is a cross between a serval, a large wild cat found in Africa, and a domestic cat and was first registered as a breed in 2001.

They are very loyal to their owners and, like dogs, can be taught to fetch and be walked on a leash.