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Zookeeper hospitalized after tiger attack at Topeka Zoo

21 April 2019

A zookeeper is recovering in the hospital after she was attacked Saturday morning by a tiger at the Topeka, Kansas, zoo.

While a city official say the animal and the zookeeper were in the "same space", she could not specify what caused the attack.

Sanjiv came to the Topeka Zoo in August 2017 from a zoo in Akron, Ohio.

The zoo keeper was alert and awake when she was rushed to a hospital, where she was listed in stable condition, city of Topeka spokeswoman Molly Hadfield said.

Reporter Shawn Wheat said: 'First responders are responding to the Topeka Zoo for a tiger attack.

Zoo Director Brendan Wiley said the male Sumatran tiger simply reacted the way that is normal for a tiger to do and there is absolutely no consideration of euthanizing the tiger. The zookeeper is now in stable condition, and the tigers are being kept in holding, she said.

The 7-year-old tiger in question, named Sanjiv, and others were put into holding cells. The keeper does regularly go into the enclosure to clean up after the tigers.

"There really isn't a circumstance where they should have been in the same space, so there was some sort of error that occurred here", he said. Sumatran tigers are a "critically rare" and "endangered" species, Wiley said.

The incident lasted about 10 minutes. The zoo was briefly closed, but has subsequently reopened.

The zoo was open when the attack happened, and witnesses immediately reported it to zoo authorities.

The zoo does not plan on taking any action against the tiger at this time.

Zookeeper hospitalized after tiger attack at Topeka Zoo