-Big Cat Attacks-

The following is a partial listing (750) of incidents in the U.S. involving captive exotic cats since 1990. The U.S. incidents have resulted in the deaths of 23 humans, 16 adults and 5 children, the additional mauling of 258 more adults and children, 269 escapes, the killing of 146 big cats, and 133 confiscations. There have also been 276 big cat incidents outside the U.S. that have resulted in the deaths of 94 humans and the mauling of 149 humans by captive big cats. These figures only represent the headlines that Big Cat Rescue has been able to track. Because there is no reporting agency that keeps such records the actual numbers are certainly much higher. All info from: http://bigcatrescue.org/big-cat-attacks Thanks Carole :-) Go Their ? >BCR Big Cat Attacks.

Daily Big Cat News
Posted On My Facebook Group Below.

These Big Cat Attack Stories Are From 2016 - 2020.
There Are So Many That They Won’t All Fit On One Page.

Note: Page 2 Lists Attack Stories From 1990 - 2015.

- Categories # By Year -

  • 2021

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  • 2021

    May 25 2021 Xichuan, China: Circus Tigers Fatally Maul Handler After Escaping Enclosure. Police in China shot dead two circus tigers who had escaped their enclosure and fatally mauled a handler, in what was the country’s second such incident in just three days. The big cats, mature Siberian tigers, escaped into a tourist park in Xichuan County, in Nanyang in Henan province. The handler, identified as Jia, was taken to a local hospital after the incident at Danjiang Peacock Valley. The victim was pronounced dead at the facility. Danjiang Peacock Valley had hired the circus to perform at the park. The troupe had the required licenses to keep and breed the tigers.

    May 23, 2021 Bengbu, Anhui, China: A 55-year-old zookeeper was mauled to death while cleaning a Siberian tiger enclosure. The victim, named Yang, had reportedly worked at the zoo for two decades. Local reports said Yang was attacked by the big cat after a gate to an isolated section of the enclosure was left unlocked. The latest casualty has renewed calls for China to curb circuses and zoos. “What is the purpose of these zoos? To satisfy some strange human curiosity? If you want to conserve these animals, why can’t we send them back to nature reserves?” one Weibo user commented.

    May 9, 2021 Houston, TX: 28-year-old Victor Cuevas, a suspect out on $125k bond from a 2017 murder, fled 1103 Ivy Wall Dr. with his pet tiger in his white Cherokee using paper tags after police were dispatched to discover a tiger wandering the neighborhood. This tells you just about everything you need to know about those who buy and sell tigers.

    April 19, 2021 Felida, WA: A firefighter was bitten by an African serval while responding to a house fire in the Felida area of Clark County. The fire was contained in 25 minutes and there were no injuries from the fire reported. However, in addition to the first responders called to deal with the fire, animal control was called to manage the serval, who was also unarmed but shaken. (I think they meant unharmed )

    March 11, 2021 Columbus, OH: A Columbus Zoo keeper is recovering after a cheetah attack. Two Columbus Zoo and Aquarium staff members were walking Isabelle, a 4-year-old cheetah, with a harness from her facility in the Heart of Africa area to a behind-the-scenes yard for her routine exercise. The zookeeper was walking on the same path. After Isabelle sat and appeared to be calm, the caretakers invited the zookeeper to come closer, but Isabelle attacked. The Liberty Township Fire Department was called and the victim was taken to a nearby hospital for further evaluation.

    Feb. 22, 2021 Germany: A woman who works at the Osnabrück Zoo in Berlin was cleaning the big cat’s cage when it lunged at her. A lion pounced on her but she managed to escape the terrifying attack with no major injuries, authorities said. The unidentified 25-year-old woman was cleaning the big cat’s cage at around noon when it lunged at her, according to police.

    Feb 21, 2021. CA: At the Butte Valley Barry R. Kirshner Wildlife Sanctuary, a leopard attacked an employee that had been working with big cats for 10 years and had felt she had a relationship with this leopard. It appears it was common practice to go inside the cages with the cats. Kirshner says two volunteers were feeding one of the sanctuary’s two Amur leopards. One volunteer, later attacked, was inside the cage while the other remained just outside.

    Feb. 15, 2021 TX: San Antonio. Sheriff Salazar says he has named a tiger that was rescued over the weekend “Elsa,” after Sunday night’s winter storm that coated San Antonio in snow. The tiger, believed to be an 8-month-old female, will eventually be transferred to Black Beauty Ranch for long-term care. The animal is currently in the care of Wildlife Rescue. What everyone needs to know is where did the tiger come from and who illegally declawed this endangered species?

    Feb. 6, 2021 TX: A tiger was found wandering around San Antonio, TX. A woman saw a tiger walking around in her backyard on Elk Runner near Pearsall Park on the Southwest side of San Antonio. Officers went to the location and the tiger was already gone. With the help of Animal Care Services, they were able to figure out where the tiger was located. They contacted that homeowner, who told them he had borrowed the tiger from a friend so he could show his family. The tiger jumped his back yard fence and went into the neighbor’s yard. He told officers that he was able to catch the tiger and take it back to his friend, who has several tigers.

    Feb. 6, 2021 Borneo: A critically endangered Sumatran tiger was shot dead while another is still on the loose after they escaped from a zoo on Borneo island, leaving a zookeeper dead. The tigers, both female and about 18 months old, escaped from Sinka Zoo in the town of Singkawang, West Kalimantan after days of torrential rain caused a landslide and opened a tunnel allowing their exit. A 47-year-old zookeeper was found dead with scratches and bite wounds on his body.

    Feb. 5, 2021 Ukraine: At the Minsk Zoo in Belarus, Ukraine, a tiger fatally attacked one of the zoo’s workers during feeding time. German daily newspaper Kölner Stadt-Anzeige reported that the employee was bitten on his neck by the tiger and “failed to observe the safety regulations and had gone into the cage alone.” Other employees were not around when the attack occurred.


    Oct. 30, 2020 A man who recently paid for a photo op with a black leopard got seriously injured and ended up in the hospital. According to the reports, the victim paid $150 for a “full-contact experience” with the leopard in a backyard zoo in South Florida. But instead of petting the animal and shooting selfies with it,the man got mauled and required multiple surgeries.The victim, Dwight Turner, reportedly discovered Poggi’s Animal House through Facebook.Poggi is licensed to have the leopard. However, the “full-contact experience” that he offered was illegal.

    Aug. 28, 2020 Hoedspruit, S. Africa: West Mathewson (68) of the Lion Tree Top Lodge has died of his injuries after he was attacked by his beloved white lions. Buying lions from a hunting lodge and raising them to show off with does not make someone a conservationist or a rescuer, if they continue sending the bad messages he did by posing with the lions as if they could be kept as pets. Sources say his wife plans to release the remaining lions to the wild, but that's illegal. If anything they will probably be sent back to the game farm to be shot for a price.

    May 28, 2020 Australia: 35 year old zookeeper, Jennifer Brown was found lying unconscious on the ground inside a pen full of lions. "We were treating her for lacerations to her neck and injuries to her head," Insp. Stockman said. "We loaded her took her to a waiting specialist rescue helicopter and she was transported to St George Hospital." The South Eastern Sydney Local Health District says the woman has arrived in critical but stable condition.

    Mar. 5, 2020 India: 30-year-old Wasim Ansari was killed by a nine-year-old tigress, Anuskha, after he leapt into her enclosure at the Bhagwan Birsa Biological Park, also known as Birsa zoo, in Ranchi’s Ormanjhi. Bablu climbed a three-feet tall fence and crossed a moat, which is16-feet deep and 32-feet wide, to enter the tigress’s enclosure.

    Mar. 3, 2020 CA: A Hollywood video shows a serval, which is native to Africa, attempting to escape from an animal control officer who caught the cat after he had been on the prowl for a day or so. It is illegal to own a serval in California without a special permit.Los Angeles Animal Services is working to determine if the cat has an owner.

    Feb. 24, 2020 Pakistan: The remains of 18-year-old Muhammad Bilal were found inside a lion enclosure at a zoo in Lahore, Pakistan two days after he went missing. His family found a skull and two bones inside the enclosure of Safari Park Lahore which had four lions inside. The blood-soaked skull and some bones in the enclosure were found with ripped clothing that his relatives identified as his.Officials are investigating how he ended up in the enclosure.

    Feb. 8, 2020 S. Africa: Swans van Wyke, 21, was mauled to death by lions after being attacked inside their enclosure at a game reserve in Bela-Bela, Limpopo province, South Africa. She was found collapsed outside the cage gate with major injuries including deep bite and claw wounds.The reserve has not been named.

    Jan 30, 2020 India: A 58 year old employee of the Arignar Anna Zoological Park was injured after a tiger cub's nail scratched her hand at the zoo recently. Vijaya and her husband have been both working as part of the zoo’s maintenance staff for several years.

    Jan 7, 2020 Mexico: Noemi Rosas Fragoza, 30, faces losing her arm after she was mauled by a jaguar when she got too close to its cage to 'take a selfie'.The jaguar attacked her in front of shocked onlookers at the Zoologico Bio Zoo in Córdoba, Veracruz, Mexico.Reports said the big cat severed a tendon and the victim may lose her arm.


    Dec 9, 2019 CA:Patty Perry, director of Wildlife and Environmental Conservation Inc. in Moorpark, was mauled by several of the park's tigers at an event for the park's donors, CNN affiliate KABC reported. Michael Bradbury, Perry's friend and the sanctuary's lawyer, said Perry had been hospitalized with punctures in her neck and lacerations.

    Dec 9, 2019 Pakistan: A zookeeper was attacked by a lion through the bars of its enclosure during feeding time as onlookers screamed in horror. Kannu Piraditta was feeding the big cat raw meat at the Karachi Zoological Gardens in Karachi, Sindh, on Monday when the animal clamped its jaws around his arm. Mr Piraditta had been throwing meat to the white lion, who shared the enclosure with a lioness, when the animal attacked. It took 40 seconds for the lion to chew the arm down to the bone, before the man was able to break free.

    Sept 10, 2019 New Delhi: 'Unwell And Distressed' Tiger Attacks Zoo Keeper, Keeper Loses Finger.Fateh Singh was on a night shift and had gone to fill the tiger's water bowl. The tiger swooped down on him from inside the cage.

    Sept 5, 2019 Russia: Police began an investigation after a woman was mauled by a circus lion outside the tent. The woman, identified as 25-year-old Alyona, had visited the circus along with her four-year-old daughter. During an act, the woman left her daughter to watch the show and stepped outside the tent for a smoke. While wandering close to the lion’s cage, the animal attacked her through the bars, leaving her with severe injuries to the head.The exact date of the incident was not known.

    Aug 26, 2019 Thailand: A family went to the leopard's pen to take pictures, but the grandfather opened the door to the big cat's pen - sparking desperate scenes when the six-year-old leopard Tony burst out and pounced on the two year old child. The man was reportedly expecting the leopard to have been calm in order for the tourists to have their pictures taken with it. The boy, named Orr Burns, suffered a fractured cheek bone in the attack. He was later pictured with blood pouring from wounds on his face.

    Aug 20, 2019 South Africa: Leon van Biljon was killed by his pet lions at the Mahala View Lion Lodge. Leon van Biljon was widely known as "The Lion Man" because he would walk into the cages with adult lions. It was always just a matter of time.

    July 5, 2019 Italy: Ettore Weber, 61; one of the world’s most famous tiger tamers has been mauled to death by his four big cats as he prepared for a show at a circus in Italy. The Circo Orfei – Italy’s best-known circus – in the countryside near Bari. Weber was rehearsing for his act when one of the tigers knocked him down before the other three pounced on him and mauled him to death.

    June 24, 2019 IL: A mother and child were attacked by a caracal, after it escaped from a home. The caracal was walking along a sidewalk when it attacked the child, then the mother when she intervened. The big cat lunged at police and animal control officers, who shot the cat.

    June 21, 2019 NC:Rocky, an escaped African serval was spotted this week on a farm in southeast Virginia, about 160 miles from the North Carolina home he fled in October.

    May 13, 2019 S.Africa: A 4-year-old girl is in a critical condition after being attacked by a lioness, who ripped off her scalp, at Weltevrede Lion Farm in Heilbron owned by Nico Roets. A part of Dina-Marie de Beer's skull was reportedly removed to relieve pressure on her brain and she is being kept in an induced coma. Another man sustained minor injuries when he was reportedly attacked through a fence at the same farm on Wednesday last week. In January 2010 two sisters were attacked by lionesses at the Weltevrede Lion Farm.

    May 4, 2019 Berlin, Germany: Two lions attacked a zookeeper in a German wildlife park leaving the 24-year-old man in serious condition. The attendant had entered the animals' enclosure.

    Apr 20, 2019 Topeka Zoo, KS: Employee Kristyn Hayden-Ortega, who has been with the Topeka Zoo since 2001, was nearly mauled to death by a male tiger named Sanjiv.They were in the "same space" when the incident occurred due to human error, but the zoo is refusing to elaborate on how that happened. Photos show Ortega handling wild animals at the zoo. Several visitors witnessed the attack.

    Apr 10, 2019 Africa: At the Tikwe River Lodge, a game lodge in Virginia, Free State Province, Pieter Nortje said, ‘Come here lovey, let daddy stroke you’ while waving his arm through the fence.The lioness then proceeds to sink her teeth into Pieter’s forearm, biting him down to the bone. Peter is pulled towards the fence, with the lioness slashing at his arm with her claws.

    Apr 5, 2019 Hamburg, Germany: Two lions attack zookeeper near Hamburg. It unclear why the young zookeeper entered the enclosure during feeding time. The zoo supervisor said it was a "miracle" that the employee had survived after being mauled and repeatedly bitten by two male lions at the Serengeti Zoo.The zookeeper entered the lion enclosure as the animals were feeding on the meat left out for them. It was not immediately clear why the man had done so, but preliminary information indicates he was likely trying to complete a routine fence check. The zoo in Hodenhagen in Lower Saxony also caught attention five years ago, when a lioness tried to attack a safari bus used to ferry visitors through the compound, breaking one of the windows. A family sustained slight injuries due to broken glass.

    Mar 9, 2019 AZ: A jaguar attacked a 30 year old woman at the Wildlife World Zoo in Litchfield Park, leaving her with injuries that required medical attention.The guest crossed over the barrier to get a photo and was attacked by a female jaguar. Adam Wilkerson said he was at the zoo with his family when someone came running around the corner yelling for help. "I saw the other girl up against the fence with her arm caught in the jaguar's claws." Wilkerson said he was standing behind the woman, but didn't want to pull her off."I could see the claws in her actual flesh," he said."When my mom put the water bottle through the gate, the jaguar let go of the girl. And we pulled the girl back and she collapsed," he said. There were no employees nearby during the incident, Wilkerson said.

    Mar 5, 2019 Zdechov Czech Republic: 33 year old Michal Prasek was mauled to death by a 9 year old lion he raised from a cub.Mr Prasek's father found his body in the lion's cage and told local media it had been locked from the inside. The lions - living in separate pens - were shot dead by police called to the scene.Mr Prasek, 33, bought the lion in 2016 and the lioness last year, and kept them both in home-made enclosures in his back yard in the village of Zdechov.Prasek made headlines last summer after a cyclist collided with the lioness as he was taking her for a walk on a leash.

    Feb 15, 2019 N’Djamena: Four children and their teacher were injured when a leopard roamed into their primary school in a rare attack in Chad. Five people were hurt when the big cat entered an army colonel’s house.It then headed to the school where the other injuries occurred.The leopard was a “domestic animal” owned by an army official, said residents in the Amsinene area in the capital N’Djamena.Security forces killed the leopard after it wandered close to a military base.

    Jan 1, 2019 Parkland, FL: A 60 pound male cougar jumped a backyard fence and after spooking neighbors was tranquilized and removed by the FWC. The big cat wore a black collar, not an electronic tracking collar, leading wildlife officers to believe it may be an escaped pet. It had no other identifying markers.Investigators are treating it as “an escaped, illegally possessed captive animal,” said Rob Klepper, a spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.Big Cat Rescue offered placement in an accredited facility, but the FWC said they had already made other arrangements.


    May 1, 2018 S. Africa: A lion whose attack on a Michael Hodge, owner of Marakele Predator Centre in Limpopo province was recorded in a graphic video has been killed. The video shows Hodge walking in an enclosure behind the lion and then running for an exit when the lion turns and chases him. The lion quickly drags him toward some bushes.

    May 1, 2018 Pelham, AL: A serval went missing when he bolted from the front door of Felicia Wilson’s home.

    Mar 19, 2018 Mexico: Gustavo Serrano Carabajal was cleaning the Kimba lion’s cage but forgot to properly lock the gate. The lion opened the gate and attacked Carabajal by savaging his neck. His lifeless body was later found in the enclosure of Kimba – who is kept at Nicolas Bravo Zoo, in Mexico.

    Mar 12, 2018 China: An official with the Fuzhou City Government in East China’s Fujian Province said the tiger “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”.

    Mar 10, 2018 Jaddah, Saudi Arabia: A horror moment was caught on film when a little girl is mauled by a lion after kids were trapped inside enclosure where their parents had brought them to play with a “cub”. The girl can be seen screaming in terror as lion swipes at her with its paws, pinning her to the wall before forcing her to the ground.

    Mar 6, 2018 Pretoria, SA: A 22-year-old, unnamed woman was mauled to death while visiting a popular private wildlife sanctuary run by Kevin Richardson, the well-known “Lion Whisperer,” near Pretoria at the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve. Richardson was taking “his” lions for a walk when one broke free and killed the woman almost 2 miles away as she was getting into her car after doing an interview for school.

    Feb 7, 2018 Guatamala: Cipriano Alvarez, 55, had his limbs ripped off after putting his hands too far through the metal bars to give circus tigers a bucket of water to drink from. He had been instructed to fast them every third day. The tigers ate his arms.

    Jan 11, 2018 Krasnoyarsk, Russia: A woman is saved by her thick winter coat when runaway puma attacks her after it escaped from a Russian circus called Dovgalyuk Dynasty. The woman was attacked from behind as she bought tickets. Drivers in the car park honked horns to scare the puma away and stop the attack. The puma was later caught.


    Nov. 24, 2017 Paris, France: Tiger shot dead in Paris after escaping from the Bormann-Moreno circus. The Brigitte Bardot Foundation, founded by the actor turned animal rights activist, expressed horror and called on the ecology minister to ban the use of animals in circuses. “It’s a miracle that there weren’t any human victims this time,” the group said.

    Nov. 23, 2017 China: A curious onlooker passed out in agony, after a circus tiger gnawed on his hand for three minutes as the man was trying to feed the tiger, which was in a circus wagon in Nanyang City, China before a show.

    Nov. 22, 2017 RI: A Savannah cat is caught on camera breaking into a home and attacking the family’s domestic cat right outside the door of a newborn infant. The Savannah cat broke into the house on several occasions by slipping through a vent and then breaking out windows.

    Nov. 8, 2017 PA: An African Serval was found wandering the streets of Berk Co., PA. “We have had everything from monkeys to Nile crocodiles to, you know, mountain lions,” said Tom Hubric, the ARL’s interim executive director. “We’ve had some crazy calls over the years, so our staff really never knows what they’re going to walk into. We did check with [the Pennsylvania] Fish and Game [Commission],” Hubric said. “There is nobody in Berks County that has a current license to own an African serval, and we assume that’s the reason why nobody came looking for her.”

    Nov. 6, 2017 Russia: At the Kaliningrad Zoo horrific photos show the moment the Siberian big cat pounced on his Keeper as she tried to feed him. The images showed the woman lying on her back as the tiger pinned her to the ground, closing in for the kill. Some visitors picked up a table and chairs from a nearby cafe, hurling it towards the animal in a bid to distract him. Others began screaming and shouting as the 15-year-old male tiger named Typhoon, carried on his assault. One witness described how the woman began screaming as she desperately tried to fight off the beast. The zookeeper managed to flee when the tiger became distracted by the crowds. With no other staff in sight, it was also up to the visitors to call for an ambulance. She has since been taken to hospital and, miraculously, is expected to survive.

    Oct. 7, 2017 India: Animal keeper Anjaneya Anji, aged 41, was killed in Bannerghatta Biological Park in Bangalore by two white tiger cubs. Even as young cubs tigers can be deadly. Another animal keeper at the park was badly injured by in an attack at the park in 2015.

    Sep. 29, 2017 South Africa: Ospreys coach Steve Tandy called hooker Scott Baldwin “stupid” after the Welsh international put his hand through a fence and was bitten by a lion in South Africa.

    Sep. 26, 2017 Schnecksville, PA: Shishka, an 18-year-old bobcat, escaped at a beer fest at the Lehigh Valley Zoo, after working her way out of a hole in the cage.

    Sep. 16, 2017 Kelso, MO: A serval owner named Amy Grubb-Klingeman posted on Facebook; (Bella) has gotten off her harness. She’s an African Serval. Last seen in Kelso. $1,000 Reward for any sighting that brings her home.

    Aug 24, 2017 Virginia Beach, VA: Regarding a super size cat prowling the neighborhood, “It appears to be a Savannah cat which is a hybrid of a domestic cat and a serval, which is an African. They are legal to own as pets in Virginia,” Pete Acker, a biologist with the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries said.

    Aug 22, 2017 Hardeeville, SC: A 45-pound, 2-year-old serval named Toby went missing from a Plantation Drive home in Hardeeville. The owner Christine Ismail says she suspects Toby broke through a window in the home and may be injured.

    Jun 3, 2017 Ontario, Canada: South Georgian Bay OPP reported spotting an African Serval cat in the area of Tiny Beaches Road North and Forest Circle.

    May 29, 2017 UK: A female zoo-keeper has died a “freak accident” after a tiger entered an enclosure at a wildlife park. The attack happened at Hamerton Zoo Park, near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire.

    May 22, 2017 SA: This one is not calculated into the totals above because we have never tracked escapes or big cats killed outside of the U.S. A male tiger named King Corbett was euthanized at by John Varty where a 3-year-old boy was killed by the cheetah in recently. Apparently he was being “too aggressive”, having reportedly escaped from his enclosure at least three times and attacked the owner of the place.

    May 18 2017 SA: Cheetah attack in Cape Town, Africa at Tenikwa Awareness Center. One of the guides was bitten and when the other came over to help the cheetah attacked him next. This place offers walks with their cheetahs just like many trophy hunting facilities in Africa.

    May 15, 2017 TX: A jaguar escaped from its enclosure at the Abilene Zoo and attacked a spider monkey, which later was euthanized due to the extend of the wounds. The zoo can’t figure out how the jaguar escaped.

    May 8, 2017 Doullan, France: A lion grabbed his tamer around the throat and dragged him around the circus ring before an audience of horrified children. According to Francebleu, he has been left bewildered by the attack having raised and trained the animal himself, never having had a problem before.

    Mar 17 2017 SA Emdoneni Lodge in Hluhluwe KwaZulu-Natal: A cheetah attacked a teenage guest from New Zealand. Dave Driver‚ father of 14-year-old Isaac‚ had to rescue his son when he was attacked by one of the cheetahs. His mother Mandy told Radio New Zealand that one of the cheetahs seemed to be restless when the family visited the lodge. It walked through the group before pushing her son‚ Isaac‚ to the ground with “full force”. “[The cheetah] landed [Isaac] on the ground as though it was eating him. It was horrible‚ it was really scary‚” she said. “My husband just seemed to appear from nowhere — he just grabbed the cheetah‚ pulled him off … and just held it to the ground.” Isaac sustained injuries to his back and shoulder. In August 2015‚ a grade four KwaZulu-Natal schoolboy was bitten by a cheetah during a school outing to a midlands conservancy. He was admitted to hospital.

    Apr 8, 2017 SA: 12-year-old Kristian Prinsloo did not survive the April 8 lion attack that left him in a critical condition at a hospital in Pretoria where he died. The Grade 6 pupil died a day after his 12th birthday with two of his neck vertebrae damaged from the attack and a swollen brain that stopped doctors from performing any operation. The boy was attacked by a three-year-old “tame” lion that was kept in a cage at a luxury estate where his grandmother, 75-year-old Marie Strydom – whom he was visiting – lived. The lion was one of three belonging to the grandmother’s neighbours and friends, Cor and Alet Vos outside Lephalale in the Limpopo province.

    Mar 23, 2017 Paterson, NJ: An African Serval was tranquilized and brought to Wildlife Freedom in Wanaque after escaping through the window of the owner’s apartment in a run down section of town. The owner was insisting that the cat is a Savannah Cat, probably to avoid a ban on wild cats, but it is clearly a Serval.

    Mar 19, 2017 SA: A 3 year-old boy has been killed by a captive cheetah on Tiger Canyons, a tiger breeding farm owned by John Varty, near Philippolis in the Karoo region of South Africa. Varty frequently attracts controversy – including a protracted and crippling legal battle with former partners in Tiger Canyons farm and being hospitalised with two broken ribs, lacerations and puncture wounds after one of his tigers attacked him. He also accidentally shot one of his tigers who was a new mother.

    Jan 29, 2017 China: A tourist has been mauled to death by three tigers in front of his wife and child. Chinese media claims the father died after he entered the enclosure and walked towards the hungry cats as they were feeding – one tiger was shot and killed. Horrendous footage shows the visitor writhing in agony on the floor as the three animals bite and claw his body with their massive paws. The tigers attacked the man inside Ningbo Younger Zoo, in east China, and were undeterred when zoo keepers tried to scare them off with firecrackers and water canons. Local reports say the man has died from his injuries after the the captive creatures bit into his head and neck.

    Jan 28, 2017 Rome, Italy: Panicked residents in a small Italian town ran for safety as an escaped Bengal tiger roamed the streets for several hours. The tiger, named Oscar, had escaped from a Swedish circus and took to the streets of Monreale, Italy, for about two hours. Police, with the help of circus trainers, were able to corral the tiger into a cage.

    Jan 26, 2017 Japan: A lion bit the heads and legs of two animal keepers while they were bathing him inside a cage in preparation for a photo shoot. The lion, reportedly a 10-year-old male, was chained and did not escape. The keepers, a man in his 20s, and a female in her 50s, remain conscious but were severely injured. The two employees were bathing the the lion owned by Shonan Animal Production, a company that rears animals for television productions and film projects. While it’s tragic that two people suffered injuries, this is just another story that shows what happens when wild animals are kept captive: they fight back. And it’s a lose-lose situation for both the animals and people http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11789160

    Jan 18, 2017 South Africa: Two white lions escaped from Lion Tree Top Lodge to the neighbouring property, Ngama Lodge, where they attacked the two gentlemen – who are both employees of Ngama Lodge. One was killed by the lions and the other mauled. According to their website, Lion Tree Top Lodge raised the white lions to educate people about the plight of lions in the wild.

    Jan 12, 2017 South Africa: Hoedspruit police spokesman Luvhuhani Mulaudzi: “Qebekhulu Justice and an unidentified friend of his were attacked by a lion, thought to be from Lion Tree Top Lodge, when they were collecting firewood within their work premises.” An inquest has been registered and investigations are under way.


    Dec 23, 2016 Russia: A 50 yr old male zoo employee in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia was hospitalized with severe bites after he entered the enclosure of a lioness in order to pet her. Unfortunately, the drunken man’s desire to cuddle with the big kitty ended abruptly when she attacked him. The mauling occurred at the Madagascar Zoo in the city of Nizhny Novgorod on the Volga River.

    Dec 21, 2016 Russia: A rampaging leopard mauls woman at a circus as she protected her four year old godson from the attack. The woman struggled to protect her friend’s son Tim (Timofey), her godson, who she had taken to see the travelling circus show in Bogotol, Krasnoyarsk region. Moments earlier, the leopard called Loki (a young cub) had been taken out of the arena by its woman tamer after appearing ‘aggressive’. When it came back, it immediately rushed towards the boy and his godmother.

    ‘Suddenly he jumped in front of my nose, I only had time to cover Tim,’ said Lyubov, who saved the child from a possibly fatal attack. The beast grabbed me with its teeth, and began to tear me up.’ Circus staff had pulled the leopard away from the woman and boy, and were also wounded. A police car then rushed her to hospital. ‘I felt weak and nauseous,’ she said.

    The boy’s mother Oksana Uskova was also with them, and said: ‘Doctors put in 10 stitches and her tendon was bitten all the way through, not to mention the stress and consequences in the future… There was no safety, no fencing. We sat in the 6th row, but the animal was there in three seconds. This fear and horror still is in my eyes.’

    She added: ‘No one helped us. We went outside, and were waiting for the ambulance there. But it took so long the traffic police gave us a lift to the hospital. As we got to their car, she [Lyubov] fainted. She lost a lot of blood. There was blood everywhere.

    Nov. 20, 2016 Johannesburg, SA: A child was attacked by a tiger at a show inside a zoo in the city of Sakakah, north of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates based television news channel Al Arabiya reported. People screamed as they managed to rescue the 5 year old girl from the tiger’s grip. See video at https://www.enca.com/life/travel/video-tiger-attacks-child-in-saudi-arabia

    Oct 5, 2016 S. Africa: A nine year old boy, named Jayden Swanepoel, was hospitalized for bites to the neck by a lion at a cub petting scheme in Tzaneen.

    Oct. 1, 2016 SD: Michael Welchynski, founder of Spirit of the Hills, a pseudo sanctuary located at 500 Tinton Rd. Spearfish SD, was found by first responders to be covered in bites to his head, neck, shoulders and arms. He had been bitten by a tiger (presumably Louise or Raphael) who escaped through an open gate. At first no one knew where the tiger was lurking. Deputies approached the tiger’s enclosure to secure the still open gate. “It peeked its head out of the door a couple times, and the third time it crouched down and started coming out the door,” deputy Paul Hansen said. “There is really nothing fence-wise, they told us, that would keep something like (the tiger) in the perimeter, because they are not tall fences,” Hansen said. The tiger was shot and killed. Welchynski is in the hospital in fair condition. The remaining big cats were relocated to Wild Animal Sanctuary in CO. The USDA had been camped out at the facility since Sept. 28th for undisclosed reasons.

    Sept 29, 2016 Germany: A lion cub was shot dead at Leipzig zoo after escaping from enclosure. The one-year-old lions, named Majo and Motshegetsi, had slipped into the main grounds of the zoo at about 8.40am local time, before the park opened to the public. Staff determined they had lost control of the situation and a zookeeper shot and killed Motshegetsi. The two lions, originally from Namibia, arrived in Leipzig last month from Basel zoo. The escape “surprised all of us because the enclosure had been in operation for 15 years. Of course we assume that it is secure,” Junhold, the zoo director said. Last March, one tiger was killed by another at Leipzig zoo when a partition separating the animals was removed by accident.

    July 7, 2016 Berlin, Germany: Two lions escaped from the zoo in the German town of Baruth, which is 46 miles from Berlin. The lions made a run for it at 11am into an area full of guests. A sharpshooting veterinarian was able to sedate the intrepid female lion so that she could be placed back in its cage, along with her male counterpart who stayed at the entry of the cage. No one knows how they made their escape, but the executive director of the wildlife park, Julian Dorsch, told the press that the outbreak was apparently due to ‘human error’.

    July 7, 2016 Devon, UK: A Siberian lynx has escaped from Dartmoor Zoo and is on the loose. Keepers have warned it could attack ‘if alarmed or cornered’. Flaviu, arrived the night before his escape by chewing through a board in the wall of the enclosure. Police are on site and a helicopter is combing the area while children in a local nursery are being kept inside. Around 30 visitors were ushered to safety this morning and the zoo was shut for the day on the advice of the local council.

    July 2, 2016 Spain: An animal caretaker has been killed by a tiger at a nature park in the southern Spanish town of Benidorm. The 37-year-old woman was attacked by the tiger while she was in his cage. According to news website Ultima Hora, she had left a gate to the tiger area open. Police contacted the Red Cross and ambulances rushed to the scene – Terra Natura de Benidorm nature park – but they were not able to act until the tiger had been tranquilised.

    June 16, 2016 OR: Josephine County Animal Protection Officer David Pitts reports that the Great Cats general manager, Sarah (or Sherrie Johnson?), told him keeper Sara Romswinckel hadn’t noticed that the tiger’s “den” was unlocked when she pulled a cable opening a “guillotine” door, which in turn allowed the cat, a white tiger named Scooby, to enter the den. When the tiger then rubbed his face against the gate, it opened, prompting Romswinckel to push her body against it an effort to close the gate. When the keeper then put her arm across the slightly open gate, to gain leverage, the tiger struck. Romswinckel suffered fractures and extensive soft-tissue damage. Pitts reported that the tiger, if it escaped the den, could have hopped a 6-foot wooden fence. Craig Wagner, the park President, previously was cited for a “photo shoot,” where a teenager handled a tiger and leopard was bitten by the leopard, according to a USDA complaint filed in 2013.

    June 12, 2016 Canada: A lynx scratched a little girl at the Ringtail Ranch in Wainfleet. The child pulled on a Plexiglas window on the enclosure, opening it wide enough that the lynx was able to reach out its paws and scratch the girl on either side of her head. She was standing there with her parents. Welland and District Humane Society executive director John Greer said the cat’s claws could easily cut through skin, and “it’s ridiculous the amount of damage they can do in a very short period of time.” “The little girl really got lucky,” he said.

    June 7, 2016 UT: An Amur leopard escaped and was at large at the Hogle Zoo during peak visiting hours. Zeya, a 60-pound, four-year-old Amur Leopard, is one of the smallest animals to live at the zoo’s Asian Highlands exhibit. They said she apparently climbed up some mesh fencing that surrounds the enclosure and squeezed through one of the 6″ by 6″ holes at the top. A large quantity of Zeya’s fur was found on the mesh, which led zoo officials to reach this conclusion about Zeya’s escape. Zeya was found sleeping on a beam about 15 feet in the air just outside the fence to her cage. Her escape prompted a lockdown at the zoo and guests were ushered into buildings as workers contained Zeya. An emergency response time shot her with a tranquilizer dart and she was taken to the zoo’s hospital for observation.

    May 21, 2016 Chile: Two lions were killed after a man jumped into the lion enclosure at the Santiago Metropolitan Zoo in Chile, local police said. They say the man climbed over the fence and removed his clothes before he approached the lions inside the enclosure, and zoo staff shot the lions to protect him. The incident has provoked outrage on social media, while the zoo is defending its actions.

    Apr 21, 2016 TX: The Conroe Police Department began receiving phone calls reporting a small tiger on the loose. Given that tigers are not native to the Houston, Texas suburb, this probably seemed pretty strange. Conroe police are not pleased with the young tigress’ presence. Dorcy McGinnis of the Conroe Police Department told KHOU, “[The tiger] is a very strong animal. It definitely would not be appropriate here in the City of Conroe.” Although tigers can be legally kept as pets in the state of Texas, Conroe’s city ordinances prohibit owning or harboring a “dangerous animal” in the city. A day later and no owner has come forward.

    Apr 15, 2016 Palm Beach, FL: A woman has died after a tiger injured her inside the tiger’s night house at the Palm Beach Zoo. The victim was said to be “very knowledgeable about the tigers and loved them dearly”. She was flown by Trauma Hawk to St. Mary’s for treatment, according to Naki Carter, a zoo spokesperson. Police said the tiger was tranquilized. Authorities had to wait until the drugs took effect on the tiger before rescue crews could get to the victim. Yes, that’s two people killed by captive tigers on the same day. A new record.

    Apr 15, 2016 San Salvadore: A white tiger being kept in a private zoo in El Salvador fatally attacked its keeper and escaped but was recaptured hours later. “It looks like the keeper wasn’t following safety protocols as he fed the white tiger and it attacked him, causing serious injuries that caused his death.” The big cat was being kept in an animal park run by a group called the Wildlife Refuge Foundation on the outskirts of Jayaque, a town just west of the capital San Salvador.

    Apr 2, 2016 Malta: The hunters’ international fair, organised by the Hunters’ Federation, attracted thousands of visitors to Montekristo Estates for a weekend of guns, ammunition and hunting paraphernalia. It also attracted visitors to the animal park that had been closed last Nov after the mauling of another child by a tiger on the loose. While the zoo was inexplicably open, a second child, this time a young boy, suffered scratches to his neck and back from another animal, a juvenile lioness.

    Mar 7, 2016 Russia: A toddler has been mauled by a lion cub after it was left to run loose in a Russian park in Vladimir, east of Moscow. A traveling “zoo” owner was showing off the lion cub in the park. Within seconds the young animal’s attention is diverted to a small child sitting nearby and the cub races to the boy and begins to maul his neck. His mother can be heard screaming in Russian “get him” as the helpless child cries out “mummy.” The handler quickly pulls the lion off the toddler and proceeds to beat it.

    Feb 28, 2016 Canada: The owner of Papanack’s Exotic Animals shot and killed a five-year-old male lion named Zeus that had escaped from its enclosure. Officers from Hawkesbury OPP rushed to the scene and found the African lion walking near the entrance of Papanack Park Zoo, an unfenced area. There was no way to contain the animal, police say, and the zoo owner was forced to shoot it. Kerri Bayford posted on behalf of the park “At approximately 5:19 p.m. our male lion breached its primary perimeter fence. Police were called immediately and within minutes our staff, with police present, made the decision to euthanize the lion on our property,” Bayford wrote. “The risk to the public of trying to sedate the lion was simply too high as the sedative takes too long to kick in and this would have put everyone at risk.”

    Jan 21, 2016 Australia: A 12 year old tiger has attacked a keeper at an Australian zoo founded by the late Steve Irwin. The incident, which took place Thursday morning at the Sunshine Coast’s Australia Zoo, left 41-year-old Che Woolcott with “significant puncture wounds” to his head and forearm, according to local media reports. He was treated at the scene before being transferred to the hospital.

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