14-month-old lioness suffers ‘agonizing’ declawing so zoo visitors can play with her

There are thousands of zoos where the prime objective is conservation. By keeping threatened species in a safe and comfortable environment you can encourage a successful breeding program.

I’ve never been comfortable gawping at animals in enclosed spaces but I understand that the money zoo visitors generate help certain species survive. Staff at these zoos have the animals’ best interests at heart.

But there are some zoo owners who do not have the animals’ best interests at heart.

A zoo in Palestine has sparked outrage after they declawed one of their lions so visitors could “play” with her.


It happened at Rafah Zoo in Palestine’s Gaza strip.

The lion, called Falestine, was anesthetized throughout her ordeal but animal experts said it would still be painful.

The procedure was carried out two weeks ago and only a few days later her claws were trimmed again.

Although the adolescent lion still has all her teeth, zoo owner Muhammed Jumaa believes that Falestine should be docile enough to “play” with the park’s visitors.

“I’m trying to reduce the aggression of the lioness so it can be friendly with visitors,” said owner Mohammed, according to the Daily Mail .

Lioness Falestine has her head pushed down into the dirt as she lies helplessly in the Gaza strip, far from her natural habitat.

Gepostet von World Heritage Species am Donnerstag, 14. Februar 2019

There is no animal hospital in Gaza so the operation, which has been described as “horrific and agonizing” for the lion, was carried out at the zoo.

Mohammed claimed the procedure was painless and he just wanted to bring “smiles and happiness” to the children.

‘Froze to death’

But charity Four Paws disagrees saying doing this to a lion is the equivalent of amputating the fingers of a human up to the knuckle.

The lion will now lose vital functions and dexterity,  a charity spokesman said, according to the Daily Mail article.

According to the charity the zoo keeps around 50 animals and four newborn lions recently froze to death there.

Palestinian zoo workers hold up the young lioness called Falestine at the Rafah Zoo in the southern Gaza Strip on Tuesday, February 12, 2019.

Gepostet von World Heritage Species am Donnerstag, 14. Februar 2019

I can’t understand how you can do this to an animal and think it’s okay. It’s clear that such a procedure is unnatural not to mention painful for the lion.

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