When Angie MacLellan and her husband packed their suitcase Saturday morning in Cuba for their flight back to Nova Scotia, they inadvertently included a four-legged stowaway.

After spending a night in Halifax, the couple drove home to Sydney Forks in Cape Breton. As they settled into their home and unpacked their suitcases, MacLellan's husband, Adam Currie, got quite a shock.

"Out, ran up his arm, a one-foot-long lizard," she told CBC Cape Breton's Information Morning. "He's forest green, he has yellow spots on his torso and yellow lines on his tail. He's a little chubby thing."

Angie MacLellan

Angie MacLellan and her husband found the lizard in a suitcase after arriving home in Cape Breton following a trip to Cuba. (Hal Higgins/CBC)

The couple rigged up an old sunflower seed bucket to put the lizard in, adding a gardening pad at the bottom for its comfort. They then contacted the Department of Natural Resources, MacLellan said, given "we did kind of transport an illegal immigrant."

MacLellan said her husband also went to the pet store to buy crickets to feed the lizard, which by this point had a name — George. 

"There was a lot of wild dogs in Cuba, so I was calling them all George," MacLellan said. "So when I got extra company on the way home, I started calling him George." 

The couple ended up dropping George off with officials at the Department of Natural Resources. She said George is being kept in quarantine, which is standard in instances such as this.

MacLellan isn't sure what will happen from here, but she does have an offer from someone on Facebook who says he keeps lizards and is willing to take George in.

At this point it's not known if that will be allowed, given regulations on bringing animals into Canada from other countries.