News Here Kitty, Kitty, Kitty
posted by January 18 at 9:23 AMon
News from the SF Zoo…
One of the two survivors of the San Francisco Zoo tiger attack that left a 17-year-old dead told the victim’s father that the three had yelled and waved at the animal while standing atop the railing of the tiger’s exhibit, police said in court documents filed Thursday….
An autopsy conducted by a zoo veterinarian on the Siberian tiger after police shot it to death showed that the animal had been “very determined to get out,” Matthews said. Its claws were broken and splintered by clambering up the concrete moat wall, Matthews quoted the veterinarian as saying.
“This behavior may be consistent with a tiger that has been agitated and/or taunted,” Matthews said.
Taunting a tiger at the zoo is an asshole thing to do, of course, but it’s not a hanging offense. The boys, engaged in teenage assholery, had a reasonable right to expect that the zoo’s tiger enclosure would keep the tigers, you know, enclosed. This news will probably knock a couple of million off the city’s inevitable settlements with the two survivors and the estate of the boy that died. But let’s not forget that the walls of the enclosure were only 12 feet high, not the regulation 16.5 feet (tigers can jump 16 feet), and that zoo officials weren’t even aware of the exact height of the walls until days after the attack.
But for future reference: Taunting ferocious animals at the zoo is always a bad idea. Please make a note of it.