MOSCOW: A horrific attack on a female zookeeper by a Siberian tiger in Russia was caught on camera with all visitors sighting the terrible moment.
The animal sprang on the woman as she brought the 16-year-old male food, without realizing that the tiger was looking to gobble his feeder instead of the food itself.
But the woman’s life was saved by the shocked onlookers who shouted, threw stones and even hurled tables and chairs from a nearby cafe to distract the tiger called Taifun, or Typhoon.
The unnamed zookeeper from Kaliningrad in Russia was badly hurt and suffering from multiple injuries and was rushed to hospital – but, according to reports, she is expected to survive.
One witness said: ‘The girl’s face was bleeding. ‘She screamed and tried to fight off the animal.’
Other zoo employees were not present at the moment of the surprise attack, and it was down to the Russian visitors to save the keeper.
The Siberian tiger – the largest cat in the world – was supposed to be contained in another part of its compound when the woman brought its food.
But there was clearly a problem and the cat – described as ‘elderly’ – was able to attack.
A spokesman said: ‘The animal entered the enclosure when the keeper was there. ‘The tiger attacked the human.
‘Visitors with their shouting, stones and other improvisation managed to distract the animal. ‘This allowed the zoo employee to hide in a back room.’ Later zoo staff arrived at the scene and shot a sedative into the tiger.
Pictures via The Sun
‘There is no threat to her life.’ The woman is in intensive care at a hospital in Kaliningrad, a Russian region wedged between the NATO and EU countries of Poland and Lithuania. An investigation has been opened,” a local health ministry spokesman said.