Sumatran Tiger Viciously Attacks Keeper At Topeka Zoo

Sumatran Tiger Sanjiv Attacks Zookeeper
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Apr. 20 2019, Updated 9:26 p.m. ET

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A Sumatran tiger attacked a zookeeper on Saturday morning, April 20, 2019 at the Topeka Zoo & Conservation in Topeka, Kansas.

Sanjiv, the seven-year-old tiger, "tackled" the unidentified zookeeper at about 9:15 a.m. once she entered the outdoor tiger habitat. She was attacked for about 10 minutes, before being saved by three heroes.

"This could have been a very different outcome," said Brandon Wiley, the zoo's director, about three people coming to her rescue.

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Molly Hadfield, a spokesperson for the City of Topeka, said the zookeeper, who was also the primary tiger keeper, was taken to a local hospital where was she was up, alert and in stable condition. According to Wiley, she had cuts on the back of her head, neck, back and arm.

Officials plan to get the zookeeper's account of what happened.

Sanjiv, a recent father of four cubs, was brought back into an enclosed space following the attack, Wiley said. He said the tiger "did what a wild tiger does" and will therefore not be euthanized.

The other tigers in the zoo were confined and the zoo has reopened after a 45 minute shut down, Hadfield said.

The investigation into the incident is ongoing.

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