To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

​Horse Gets Brutally Attacked By Tiger And Lion At Chinese Circus

​Horse Gets Brutally Attacked By Tiger And Lion At Chinese Circus

The shocking footage shows the white horse being pounced on by a tiger from behind, while a lion mauls its legs from underneath

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman

The shocking moment when a horse was attacked by a lion and a tiger at a Chinese circus has been caught on film, and we'll warn you right now: this isn't an easy watch at all. It does, however, help highlight what animals are still going through in circuses across the world.


Credit: AsiaWire

The footage shows the white horse being pounced on by a tiger, while a lion mauls its legs from underneath. To try and get the big cats to cease, circus workers also whip them and strike them with long sticks.

It's thought that the horse survived the ordeal, which happened at a circus rehearsal in northern China, but sustained minor injuries.

A staff member from Taiyang Circus, Mr Xu, told that the crew were practising a show, which involved a tiger and a lion riding a horse with a saddle on.

"Lions and tigers are wild animals," he said. "They are different from horses. You can see from documentaries that they eat cows. This is absolutely normal."

He also explained that he felt the wild animals didn't pose a threat to staff at the circus, who believed they weren't dangerous as they had been kept at the circus from a young age.


However, Keith Guo, Peta's Asia press officer for China, told MailOnline that 'it's only a matter of time before captive animals lash out at their oppressor'.

"Big cats in the circus suffer mentally and physically every single day. When they are not performing, they are confined in cramped, filthy cages and whips and beatings are used to force them to perform," he said.

The incident was condemned by users on Weibo, a Chinese social media site, who called for the government to look into animal cruelty problems.

"Shut down the circus! This is too cruel to both wildlife and domestic animals!" said one, known as joyemiao.


Scotland and the Republic of Ireland have recently banned the use of wild animals in travelling circuses, with the rest of the UK thought to be on its way to a similar decision - despite a 2007 review by the government that found insufficient evidence to support science-based ban on the grounds of welfare.

Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) unanimously signed off on the ban towards the end of last year, with Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham saying that, although such travelling circuses rarely visit Scotland, it would work as 'a preventative measure based on ethical concerns'.

Following the news, Elisa Allen, director of animal rights group Peta, said: "Captivity is a living hell for animals such as tigers and lions, and a circus environment can't possibly meet their complex needs.

"These animals are understandably frustrated, stressed and depressed from a lifetime of being denied the opportunity to do anything that's natural and important to them, kept caged in trailers that are hauled around the country, and forced to perform confusing tricks under the big top out of some Victorian-era sense of amusement."

Featured Image Credit: AsiaWire

Topics: World News, News, PETA, Circus, Animals, China