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A panicked dad immediately fled a beach with his son after spotting what they thought was a wild big cat.
Jimmy Butler has apologised for leaving his barbecue near Gimblet Rock at Pwllheli in North Wales and explained he and his nine-year-old son abandoned it for their own safety.
Jimmy told Puma Watch of their scare at around 7pm last Thursday (May 17) which comes just weeks after a group of fishermen claim to have seen a cat the size of a golden retriever on the same beach.
North Wales Live reported the following day that some residents in the area had linked the big cat to an animal carcass found in sand dunes on a beach near Pwllheli.
In an attempt to deter the cat from coming any closer, Jimmy said he made intimidating noises before dashing to his car.
He told Puma Watch: “Me and my son who is 9 were about to light a small bbq and stay for a few hours stargazing. My lad grabbed me and said ‘what is that? is it a dog?’
“When I looked I first thought ‘yeah’ but quickly realised this weren’t the case. I panicked and made a bit of noise to which the cat quickly disappeared.
“We left straight away. Apologies for leaving the bbq on the beach but was no way I was hanging around."
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Jimmy added that as they ran from danger, a man told him he is not the first to have reported a big cat on a North Wales beach.
He said: “We got back to the car and there was a local about to go fishing and I told him what happened and he said he’d heard of 4 or 5 sightings of the same description in the last few weeks.
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“A very surreal experience, I didn’t think they were even in this country!”
A week earlier, friends Paul Wilson, Paul Owen and Patrick Owen were fishing off the coast of Pen Llyn when they were shocked to see a "very large cat" prowling just metres away from where they parked their cars.
The “brown or tawny” animal was near the rocky outcrop at the end of the town’s beach also known as Carreg yr Imbill, the trio claimed.
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