The treatment of animals is something that has recently been in the media. Whether it be the promotion of veganism through the portrayal of treatment of animals in slaughterhouses, or the demand of killer whales being released into the wild thanks to documentaries such as Blackfish, we are at a point in our history when animals are being seen as living beings that should be treated with respect. A zoo in Chile is currently under fire by people because of a recent action that was taken.
Franco Luis Ferrada is a 20-year-old man who suffers from mental health problems. Recently he visited the Santiago’s Metropolitan Zoo in Chile and climbed inside of the lion enclosure. According to witnesses, at first the lions did not seem bothered by his entrance into their home, so Ferrada began to take off all his clothes and provoked the lions. After this was done, the lions began to attack him right in front of the zoo’s visitors. Zookeepers immediately arrived at the scene and attempted to get the lions away from him by spraying them with a water hose. Unfortunately, this did not stop them so they attempted to sedate them with a tranquilizer gun, but instead of hitting the lions, they managed to get Ferrada in the neck. Due to panic or fear, one of the zookeepers then took matters into his own hands by killing both lions by shooting them with a gun.
It was shared that Ferrada suffers from mental health problems and investigators actually found a suicide note on him. He is currently in critical condition due to the wounds caused by the lion attack and the large dosage of tranquilizer he received accidentally. Large amounts of people created a candlelight vigil for the two lions, one male and the other female. While others chose to use social media to get their opinions across regarding the actions taken by the zoo, many of them have also discussed boycotting the zoo completely.
“Well done. You've gone completely against your oath to protect these endangered animals and caused uproar throughout the world. Truly disgusting and very sad,” stated one Facebook user on the zoo’s profile page. The zoo’s director, Alejandra Montalba, went on to state, “The zoo has an established protocol because people’s lives are very important to us…The alarms sounded and chemical control arrived [tranquilizer darts] and an independent shooter arrived. The shooter decided to save the life of the person and unfortunately we had to sacrifice two members of our family."
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