Beijing: A Chinese zoo is launching a bizarre new game where visitors can play tug-of-war with a tiger by shelling out USD 7.
Several human-tiger tug-of-war games were held in Changsha Ecological Zoo, in Hunan, last week as a trial of the activity, which will be officially launched next week.
Players need to grab a rope that passes through a tiny hole into the giant cat`s enclosure. To get the tiger to participate, a live chicken is placed in a sack tied to a rope.
In one such game, seven tourists reportedly lost to a four-year-old Amur tiger.
Yi Ting, who works at the zoo, said that the tug-of-war game aims to train the wild Siberian tigers and stimulate them, avoiding sickness that could be caused by their long-term captivity in the zoo.
Tourists who buy a ticket for USD 7.36 can participate in the game, Sina English news service reported.
According to a regulation released by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of China in July, all kinds of animal shows are banned in zoos.
However, Yi said, such games should not be included in animal performances such as those held by circuses.
Animal rights activist Guo Geng, a Beijing local political adviser, said human-tiger games are surely included in the animal performances, which also seem an insult to animals.
The move has also drawn ire from netizens who believe the games between human beings and tigers are inappropriate. One netizen worried that a tooth of the tigers might be pulled out.