Wildlife dept gives nod to mercy killing of paralysed lions

Date and time of euthanasia not yet firmed up


Asif Mehmood May 02, 2019
PHOTO: EXPRESS

LAHORE: Punjab Forest and Wildlife Secretary Captain (retd) Mohammad Asif has approved the summary of mercy killing (euthanasia) of an African lion and lioness who have been suffering from paralysis for the last three years in Lahore Safari Park.

It is still unclear when will the decision of mercy killing of the pair, who are in severe pain, will be executed. Sources said the Lahore Safari Park administration and the wildlife officials were afraid of the public reaction on social media if the procedure was adopted. This is the reason why the decision of mercy killing was being delayed.

Lahore Safari Park Deputy Director Chaudhry Shafqat Ali said they had four lions who suffered a paralysis attack. The condition of one pair started improving after continuous treatment and care. So, the decision to euthanise these paralysed lions and lioness has been postponed and it was decided to conduct further medical screening and tests. The blood screening tests were conducted from two different laboratories.

Their x-rays were also conducted. But the results showed no improvement in the conditions of the animals. A team, formed on the issue, had sent its recommendations again to the forest and wildlife secretary.

The expert said the treatment of this lion pair was not possible and once again the permission of mercy killing of the two animals was sought.

On the other hand, sources at the Safari Park said the administration was hesitant to finalise the decision fearing public backlash and the natural death of the animals was being awaited.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 2nd, 2019.

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