luc lefebvre mirka kangaroo

Zoo therapist Luc Lefebvre says Mirka the kangaroo is resting in her cage after being on the loose for 24 hours. (Karine Bastien/Radio-Canada)

A 12-month-old domesticated kangaroo named Mirka has been found safe and sound after it escaped Sunday evening from a zoo therapy farm in St-Lazare, Que.

Mirka's trainer, zoo therapist Luc Lefebvre, found the kangaroo close to the farm late Monday afternoon after getting a call from a neighbour who spotted it. 

"My neighbour called me and I just dropped everything. I was there in maybe five seconds and as soon as I saw Mirka, she was afraid a little bit, but it was easy to catch her," Lefebvre said.

He brought Mirka back to the farm.

"She was shaking, and licking me. It's a beautiful day now," Lefebvre said.

Mirka escaped Sunday evening, and it wasn't long before neighbours noticed.

St-Lazare resident Faye Siliuk first spotted the kangaroo Sunday, shortly after its disappearance, in her backyard, which is near the Murmurs d'animaux therapy farm.

"It took me a while to register what kind of animal that could be. I looked at it and thought, 'Oh my God, that's not a rabbit! It's not a deer! The only thing it could be is a kangaroo.' I tried to make sense of it with North American animals, and that didn't work," she said.

Siliuk spotted the kangaroo again near her home late Monday afternoon.

"I sort of tried to calmly chase after her and called her name, but at that point I think she was just sort of frightened."

Kangaroo spooked by truck

Lefebvre said the kangaroo, less than a metre tall, went missing Sunday when it likely hopped a fence after a truck came to the farm to pick up some horses. 

The St-Lazare fire department got the call yesterday reporting a missing kangaroo.

"I wasn't sure it was a joke or something," said Daniel Boyer, the director of public security at the fire department in St-Lazare. 

Mirka kangaroo

Mirka was found not far from the St-Lazare, Que., farm where she lives. (@ebeaupre_photo/Twitter)

Lefebvre had been training Mirka to do zoo therapy with people. He described the young kangaroo as curious, gentle and friendly — and certainly not dangerous. She was being trained to work with children.

"Normally, when she sees people she goes across to the people and maybe she can hold your hand, or she can know if you have some treats in your hands. She can come and be very gentle with people," he said.

After almost 24 hours on the loose, Lefebvre said, Mirka seems to be healthy.

"She's in her cage. She will rest, she will eat and she will be very close to us and we will take care of her."