A 27-year-old man in Chengdu, China, has been hospitalized after jumping into a tiger cage and attempting to feed himself to the giant felines.
The man was rescued after entering the Bengali tiger enclosure at the Chengdu Zoo on Sunday. Witnesses say he climbed on to a tree branch and lowering himself down into the pen, Agence France-Presse reported.
Once inside, he attempted to get the tigers to devour him, but eyewitness Feng Lin said the animals showed little interest.
"He climbed up the outside of the cage and jumped inside expecting, I assume, that the tigers would pounce on him," Feng said, according to the Daily Mail. "Instead, the two tigers, a male and a female, seemed more nervous than anything else and the female actually ran off."
The Huffington Post has chosen not to identify the man.
The man made faces at the tigers to antagonize them. The male tiger briefly attacked him, but zookeepers rescued him by shooting the animal with a tranquilizer dart, according to reports. He was in the cage for about 20 minutes.WARNING: THE IMAGE BELOW IS GRAPHIC. CLICK TO REVEAL IT
The man jumped in to the pen because he felt the caged animals were not being allowed to live full lives, and because he was not happy with his job situation, according to the Metro.
“I asked them to bite me and let them eat my meat, and so I did not fight back,” the man later told China's Chengdu Business Daily, according to Time.com
The man had recently quit two jobs, one as a security guard and the other in a printing factory, according to IBTimes.co.uk.
After being treated for his injuries, the man's family took him to a mental hospital so he could be treated for depression, the Irish Independent reported.
Chengdu zookeepers said the tigers were relatively docile because they had been bred from captivity and had just finished a large meal.
WARNING: GRAPHIC VIDEO