Exploring the Jaguar’s Backyard

Max Larsen, Columnist

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On Saturday, Mar. 9, an unnamed woman went past the boundaries at the jaguar exhibit at the Wildlife World Zoo in an attempt to take a selfie with the animal. As expected, the jaguar scratched the woman’s arm in self defense. According to CBS News, Adam Wilkerson, a man who filmed the aftermath of the attack, rushed over to the woman when he heard her screaming. He started to distract the jaguar with loud noises and movement so the staff could rush in and help the woman.

Officials at the Wildlife World Zoo say that the animal will not be killed, and for good reason. The woman purposely placed herself past the boundaries. According to Fox News, the zoo says that there were no extra barriers that could have been added to prevent this attack, as the woman deliberately went out of her way to take this ignorant selfie. However, this is not the first instance of attack at the zoo. According to ABC 15, Jeff Allen was clawed by the same jaguar last summer when he reached over the barrier to take a video of the cat. While Allen did call for the zoo to strengthen the barriers, worried about the possibility of small children being attacked, the zoo has taken no action as of yet.

@USAPatriot16 on Twitter tweeted “Please do not put down or hurt the animal!” The Wildlife World Zoo soon responded saying, “We can promise you nothing will happen to our jaguar. She’s a wild animal and there were proper barriers in place to keep our guests safe – not a wild animal’s fault when barriers are crossed. Still sending prayers to her and her family.”

Shawn Gilleland, a spokesman for the Rural Metro Fire Department, who was called to the scene, told NBC News in an interview. They stated that the woman was rushed to the hospital and the injuries are not life-threatening. The owner of the zoo told NBC that the woman later came back to the zoo to apologize, where she told the owner that her actions were “foolish,” according to NBC.

The issue has been resolved with an apology from the woman to the zoo’s owner, and no harmful acts being put against the jaguar. No further information has been giving about the woman or the jaguar, but the woman is recovering with non life-lasting injuries.

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