Rocky the Bobcat's bloodwork results are back, but nobody's talking.
The results will be revealed on Friday at a 1 p.m. hearing in Stafford Township Municipal Court before Judge Damian G. Murray.
Owner Virginia Fine has said she bought Rocky when he was a baby from a breeder in Montana, with the understanding that he was a "hybrid" mix of bobcat and domestic cat.
But representatives of the state Fish and Wildlife division didn't think that was the case. They alerted Murray on the day of the last hearing, right before it looked like Fine would be able to bring Rocky home.
The controversy began when Rocky got loose from Fine's Beach Haven West's home for the second time, back in March. He was missing for ten days. Fine was able to lure him back with her cat LC.
Fine has said when she brought the declawed, 38-pound cat home after she found him, Rocky did nothing but purr and head butt Fine and the little cat. Then Fine said she tried to do the right thing. She called Stafford police to tell them Rocky had been found.
Fine said she thought she had an agreement with police that Rocky could remain at home during the days leading up to the court date. Three-year-old Rocky has been with her since he was five weeks old.
The police officer at the other end of the line told Fine they would be there in an hour to remove Rocky from her home.
Rocky has been staying at the Popcorn Park Zoo in Lacey Township ever since. It's doubtful Fine will be able to keep him if the bloodwork shows he is all bobcat, state Department of Environmental Protection spokesman Bob Considine has said.
"If the results show it to be purebred bobcat, and not a hybrid, then the animal is classified by the state as a Potentially Dangerous Species and never, under any circumstance, is someone allowed to keep that classification under an Individual Hobby Permit," Considine said.
Potentially Dangerous Species can only be held under Zoological Holding Permits, Animal Exhibitor Permits, Animal Theatrical Permits and Scientific Holding Permits, he said.
"Any kind of application for those permits that come our way obviously are fully screened and scrutinized to ensure the permit holder is fulfilling all the criteria of the permit," Considine said.
Do you think Rocky is a danger to the community or just a harmless pet? Tell us in the comments section below: