China: Around The Nation

Chinese wildlife park denies animal abuse after outrage over video of tigers being beaten

PUBLISHED : Monday, 23 January, 2017, 2:18pm
UPDATED : Monday, 23 January, 2017, 2:18pm

A wildlife park in eastern China has denied it abused its animals, after online outrage over a video showing one of its white tigers sporting facial injuries and resisting orders to perform.

The Hangzhou Safari Park in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, responded to the animal abuse allegations through its Weibo account late on Sunday evening, saying that the white tiger refusing to perform “was an individual case”.

The park had found “no cases of animal abuse” after undergoing a “thorough investigation”, it added.

The animal abuse allegations came after a Beijing-based environmental science research facility posted the video online on January 12.

The video showed several white tigers at a performance, during which one of them resisted orders by chewing and pulling at the trainer’s stick.

The tiger was then seen falling into a pool of water after the trainers forced it to retreat. It struggled in the water for some time.

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Other tigers that came forward, as if to check on their companion struggling in the water, were held back by the trainers.

In another segment of the two-minute clip, a close-up shot showed a bleeding facial wound on one of the performing white tigers. Some of its teeth had also been removed.

During the performance, the tigers were made to roll on the ground and stand on their rear paws to greet the audience.