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Dog nurses lion cub in Gaza zoo

June 15, 2015 at 12:22 pm

A dog has been brought into a zoo in the Jabalia refugee camp, north of the Gaza Strip, to nurse a lion cub who was rejected by its mother, the Anadolu Agency reported.

The zoo’s lioness had three cubs, two cubs died because the mother rejected them and the third was in danger of suffering the same fate.

After consulting a Canadian veterinarian online, zoo manager Ibrahim Sbeeta said: “We brought a female dog who is a mother of eight to breastfeed the cub.” Adding that dog’s milk is the closest to the lioness’s.

“It was difficult for the dog to feed the cub at the beginning,” Sbeeta said, “but after a while it became OK. When the dog finishes feeding its puppies, it feeds the cub immediately.”

According to Sbeeta, this is the first time such a method has been used in a zoo in Gaza.

He said the lioness rejected her cubs because of a psychological disorder resulting from her life in captivity, adding that Gaza is not a suitable place to nurture cubs.

There were nine lions in captivity in Gaza, four males and five females. In the wake of last summer’s Israeli offensive on the Strip, an Austrian veterinary team moved two lionesses and a lion from Gaza to Jordan to receive psychological treatment as Israel had attacked their zoo.

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Gaza dog nursing a lion cub

Gaza dog nursing a lion cub