An African serval cat was spotted in the Grosse Pointe subdivision in Vernon Hills Saturday before being captured. | Photo via Facebook

A cat native to Africa, which was initially reported to police as a bobcat, has been captured after it escaped and was spotted roaming around Vernon Hills.

The Vernon Hills Police Department issued a warning to residents about the animal Saturday evening.

The police said residents should use caution due to a possible bobcat sighting.

Officers received the report of a bobcat in the Grosse Pointe subdivision.

“Please watch your pets, especially at night,” the police department said in the alert.

Several residents reported seeing the animal but said it was not a bobcat as initially reported.

“Please take this seriously, folks. My neighbor and I were out walking our dogs and encountered it. It was about as big as my 75-lb. pitty and was seriously stalking the dogs. It was not afraid of us; it got within a few feet,” one resident said.

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“I thought for sure it was going to attack the dogs. We are safe because we started yelling and some good-hearted neighbors let us into their homes, then called VHPD (thank you for your swift response, VHPD!) I am feeling very grateful (and shaken) tonight,” the resident added.

Police officials said in an update Sunday morning that the animal was confirmed to be an African serval cat.

The owner of the escaped serval was identified and assisted in successfully capturing it.

Vernon Hills police confirmed it was not the same serval cat that went missing in downstate Illinois near Decatur last month as that serval had already been captured earlier this week.