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The man who punched a kangaroo in the face to save his dog has been 'receiving threats from animal activists'.

It's got so bad that 34-year-old Greig Tonkins was forced to call the police.

He went viral after a video showing him coming to the rescue of his canine companion by boxing a kangaroo exploded onto the internet.

It was then revealed that Greig works as an elephant keeper at Taronga Zoo and activists started getting angry and saying he should be fired.

In fact, PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals) publicly condemned him and said it was 'neither funny nor brave' and 'illegal'.

Earlier this morning, he was forced to ring the police as he believed activists were on his property and he was concerned for his life, reports Daily Mail Australia.

One critic wrote online: "Greig Tonkin is VIOLENT RUTHLESS and an ANIMAL ABUSER. Children and elderly people are next to be hurt by Greig Tonkin."

Another said: "Pathetic excuse for a human being! Hope someone pays him back."

Greig has been allowed to keep his job, with the zoo releasing a statement that read: "Following the events of the last 48 hours in which Greig Tonkins was seen on social media punching a kangaroo in attempt to free his dog from its hold, Taronga has been inundated with concern for Mr Tonkins as well as enquiries regarding Taronga's position on the events.

"Best practice animal welfare and the protection of Australian wildlife are of the utmost importance to Taronga. Taronga strongly opposes the striking of animals and does not support the practice of using dogs to hunt, as this can result in negative welfare for both species.

"Mr Tonkins is an experienced zoo keeper and during his six years at Taronga Western Plains Zoo has always followed Taronga's best practice approach to animal care and welfare. We confirm that there is no suggestion of Mr Tonkins' employment at Taronga Western Plains Zoo ending as a result of this event. However, the highest standards of animal welfare and care are a core value of Taronga and one that we expect our staff to uphold in all their interactions with wildlife and we continue to work with Mr Tonkins on his conduct in regards to this incident."

Featured image credit: YouTube/Viral Hog/Greg Bloom

Mel Ramsay

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