Zoo Announces Jaguar That Attacked Woman Too Close To Fence Will Not Be Put Down

Combined Shape

Wildlife World Zoo in Litchfield, Arizona, has announced that it will not euthanize the female jaguar that attacked a woman who crossed a barrier during a visit on March 9.

In an interview with CBS Evening News, the woman in her 30s, identified only as Leanne, said she reached over the concrete barrier surrounding the jaguar enclosure, admitting she leaned too close to the enclosure fencing in an attempt to get an up-close photo of the jaguar. Leanne says the jaguar put her paw through the fence and attacked, leaving her arm bloodied and in need of stitches.

Bystanders helped distract the animal with a water bottle, Inside Edition reported, while another witness pulled Leanne away from the enclosure.

Leanne was in considerable pain as first responders attended to her injuries.

At no time was the jaguar outside of her enclosure, Wildlife World Zoo stated.

Biden's DOJ Is Now Getting Involved with the Arizona Election Audit

“Please understand why barriers are put in place,” the zoo stated in a Twitter post about the incident. “Sending prayers to the family tonight.”

In light of the incident, some readers speculated that the animal may have to be put down for attacking, but Wildlife World staff confirmed that is not being considered.

On March 11, zoo officials gave an update, saying Leanne is deeply sorry for her actions and is recovering from the incident.

“We want to thank everyone who supports Wildlife World and our decision not to euthanize the jaguar after Saturday’s incident,” the zoo posted on Twitter.

Family Looking for Hero Rescuer Who Saved Child Who Couldn't Swim in Lake and Left Without Thanks

“The person involved met privately with zoo officials to acknowledge her regret for her role in the past weekend’s events.”

“I apologized to the zoo because they don’t need this,” Leanne told CBS Evening News. “They don’t need the backlash– the media.”

Wildlife World reaffirmed its commitment to educating and inspiring visitors from around the world and is preparing to host school field trips this spring.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

, , , ,
A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
Page, Arizona
Bachelor of Science in Music Education
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Lifestyle & Human Interest