A group of emaciated, dehydrated tigers are said to be recovering after they were discovered caged, starved and covered in their own excrement in the back of a lorry.
The nine big cats were forced to endure a journey across Europe, beginning in Italy and bound for Russia, where they were to perform in a circus in southern republic of Dagestan.
However, the journey was fortunately disrupted when the truck became stuck for days on the border with Belarus. It was at this point that customs officials became aware of the tigers.
Sadly, a tenth tiger died during the ordeal, with the other nine surviving despite their evident exhaustion and starvation.
Thankfully, the surviving tigers are now being cared for at zoos in Poznan, western Poland, where they are said to be making a gradual recovery.
Seven of the tigers have since resumed eating and are now receiving vitamins and mineral salts, Gulf Times reports.
Three males and four females are said to have remained ‘stressed and aggressive’ following their arduous journey, eating just half of their five to six kilos daily diet of meat. The animals went several days without eating, meaning the amount will have to be increased incrementally.
Kochani ! Dzieje się cud za cudem, ocean dobra, współczucia i empatii ! Tygrysy wszystkich połączyły, w walce o ich zdrowie, w najwspanialszych odruchach serc i cieple dusz ! W proteście przeciw cierpieniu żywych istot. Kochani nasi, Wspaniali Wielcy Ludzie, tygrysy wlasnie odplacaja : wola życia wróciła i wiara w człowieka, WSZYSTKIE TYGRYSY CZUJĄ SIĘ LEPIEJ !!!!
Posted by Zoo Poznań Official Site on Sunday, November 3, 2019
The other two tigers – which have been placed under the care of a separate zoo – are reported to be faring better.
A Poznan zoo spokesperson had described the tigers as having been ’emaciated, dehydrated, with sunken eyes, excrement stuck to their fur, urine burns, in a total state of stress, without the will or desire to live’ upon their discovery.
At the time of writing, it is unclear who exactly owns the felines, believed to be either the head of a Rome-based breeding facility or the owners of the Dagestan zoo the tigers had been bound for.
A Poznan zoo spokesperson has said it would be ‘out of the question’ for the animals to be sent to either potential owner. The tigers will instead be transferred to a specialist Spanish facility run by Dutch association Animal Advocacy and Protection.
Polish authorities have reportedly charged two Italian truck drivers and a Russian man suspected to have orchestrated the cruel journey.
The drivers of the truck that transported the tigers remain in Polish detention, with their vehicle having been impounded.
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.