By Dayo Adu

Zookeepers should always be alert and not underestimate the strength and aggressiveness of animals in their care.

President, Society for Animal Rights Protection in Nigeria, Dr Ibikunle Faramade gave the caution in an interview with our correspondent while reacting to the killing of a Veterinary Technologist, Mr Olabode Olawuyi by a lion at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.

He explained that the concept of animal welfare doesn’t encourage humans to underestimate animals especially, wild animals, noting that it behoves the keeper to ensure they are caged and kept secure.

Dr. Faramade, a Veterinary Pathologist and Lecturer at the Federal College of Animal Health & Production Technology, Apata Ibadan pointed out that it is the responsibility of humans to ensure that cages and dens of lions are properly erected and regularly maintained.

“With context to lions and aggressive animals, their cages and dens should be properly erected and proper maintenance works must be carried out to ensure that iron bars and rods that were used are properly reinforced”.

Dr Faramade commended the OAU Management for killing the wild cat, saying animal welfare doesn’t subordinate humans to animals adding that the psychology of each animal should be understood so as not to entertain any kind of distraction while tending them.

“Animal welfare allows such animal to be immediately destroyed. I want to advocate that psychology of each animal should be understood. For wild cats, no kind of distraction should be undertook while taking care of them irrespective of the years they’ve been in custody. Their cages must be properly locked, when you go there to take care of them, we must follow rigid and conservative procedure that cannot be shifted. Their emotions may be altered maybe by hunger, or delayed provision of water and food”.

He commiserated with the family of the deceased, the management of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife and the Veterinary Society praying to God for the fortitude for them to bear the irreparable loss.

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