Carole Baskin's stepping up to try to rescue the tiger that got loose in a Houston neighborhood last weekend ... and punish the people allegedly involved in the transfer of the exotic animal, said to be a male named India.
The 'Tiger King' star's Big Cat Rescue in Tampa is offering a $5,000 reward "to the person responsible for the immediate, safe hand over of India the Tiger to a sanctuary that is accredited by the Global Federation of Sanctuaries."
Carole tells TMZ she's very worried about the tiger's well-being considering "the owners of the tiger have shown a serious lack of responsibility so far."
Baskin stipulates that in order to get the cash reward, whoever has India and turns him in must work with law enforcement, and those efforts must be "sufficient to convict both buyer and seller involved in the transfers of the tiger."
She adds that India would not be coming to her Big Cat Rescue, but another accredited big cat sanctuary that would provide lifetime care.
As we reported ... police arrested a man named Victor Hugo Cuevas for evading police after they say he's the guy who was seen on video wrangling the tiger Sunday -- after it was nearly shot -- and later hauling it away in a white SUV.
However, Cuevas' lawyer denies his client is the tiger's owner and claims they don't know where India is ... and says Houston PD's made some false assumptions about the situation.
Victor's lawyer also stated they believe the true owner of the tiger is a man in his mid-30s, identified only as "Deandre" or "D."
Carole's clearly hoping her reward money helps locate India no matter who he's currently with and get him to a safe place. As you know ... she's not down with people keeping tigers as pets.