The shocking moment a zookeeper was mauled and eaten alive by a tiger he had raised since it was a cub at a Chinese zoo has been captured on video.
The employee, with the surname Wu, was with the tiger inside the large metal cage used for training exercises and circus performances when the big cat attacked.
An official with the Fuzhou City Government in East China’s Fujian Province said the cat “suddenly bit onto and suffocated him to death.”
The statement said Wu, who worked for the Fuzhou Zoo, had raised the tiger since it was a cub, and that it had been domesticated through long-term interaction with humans.
Officials described the tiger as “usually quite docile”.
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Horrific footage taken by witnesses shows the cat standing over the lifeless trainer’s body inside the cage, with someone yelling: “Call the police!”
In another clip, blurred by Chinese media, the tiger appears to claw at the handler while other staff members frantically try driving the animal away from the man using a stick.
Staff gained access to the victim, but there were no signs of life and he was declared dead by paramedics.
Fuzhou Zoo said the animal used to perform for visitors as part of an event outsourced to a circus from East China’s Anhui Province.
The shows had already been stopped prior to the incident, with all its lions already shipped away but the tigers are still awaiting approval to be moved.
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