Pet monkey escapes from Southern Pines home
Posted January 4, 2012
Updated January 5, 2012
Southern Pines, N.C. — Moore County Animal Control is searching for a pet monkey that ran away from a home in Southern Pines earlier this week, spokesman Al Carter said Wednesday.
The tan rhesus monkey, which goes by the name Toby, is 2 years old and weighs about 10 pounds. It is wearing a diaper, Carter said, and has been missing since Monday.
Carter said the animal is docile and that he didn't think anyone was in danger.
The animal squeezed out of its collar and leash, opened a door and escaped from Connie and Rudy Baxley's home at 1190 E. Connecticut Ave. The couple said the sirens from a passing fire truck scared the monkey and sent it running.
They've been looking for it ever since, even walking through the woods near their home playing monkey sounds from a recorder. They've left Toby's kennel, blanket and a can of Mountain Dew, the animal's favorite soda, outside to try to lure it home.
Neighbors have reported seeing Toby, but the animal remains on the loose.
The Baxleys have only had the pet for about three weeks, Connie Baxley said.
"I did not expect to love it immediately, (but I did), almost within moments," she said. "He is a member of our family now."
She said she is distraught over losing Toby, which she described as smart and affectionate.
"We can't eat, sleep," she said. "We are in the woods real late."
As long as they are properly kept, Carter said having a pet rhesus monkey is legal in Moore County, but rules vary from county to county in North Carolina.
Anyone who sees Toby is asked to call authorities.