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Dog Nurses Rejected Liger Cubs (VIDEO)

(LIGERS) CHINA — While the population of critically endangered tigers plummets, ligers — the cross between a male lion and a female tiger — are bred and promoted at some zoos. Although breeding ligers is illegal in many countries, liger cubs, believed to only occur in captivity (lions live in Africa, tigers in Asia, after all), have surfaced in a Chinese zoo.  (Read what’s wrong with liger breeding here.)

Only two of the four liger cubs survived, and now the mother tiger has stopped feeding her liger babies. Perhaps the mother tiger is advising us to cease and desist from the natural procreation process? Fortunately for the little ligers, a dog came to their rescue and is nursing the cubs. See the amazing video with this interspecies mom feeding her two adopted liger babies below. — Global Animal

Liger Cubs Being Nursed by a Dog 400x225 Dog Nurses Rejected Liger Cubs (VIDEO)
Photo Credit: Associated Press

BBC News Asia-Pacific, Associated Press

Two liger cubs – a cross between a male lion and a female tiger – are being nursed by a dog at a zoo in Weihai, eastern China. Four cubs were born at the Xixiakou Wildlife Zoo earlier this month but only two survived.

The mother stopped feeding the cubs after a few days so the dog, which had recently had its own puppies, was enlisted to help.Ligers are extremely rare and are thought to only be born in captivity.

Zoo spokesman Cong Wen said it was not clear why the tiger had stopped feeding her cubs, the Associated Press reports.

But she said that after some initial problems, the pair were feeding well from their canine stepmother. Although they are a different species, tigers and lions are able to breed together. Ligers are the largest known cat, usually growing much larger than either parent.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-13520472

More stories on ligers:

Baby Ligers “Accidentally” Born in Taiwan Zoo

Birth of Baby ‘Liger’ Sparks Controversy

The 900-lb Liger: Herculues’ (Staged) British Invasion


More incredible interspecies moms:

Unusual Animal Families (Gallery)

Love Is Love: Interspecies Animal Compassion (VIDEOS)


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4 Responses to Dog Nurses Rejected Liger Cubs (VIDEO)

  1. Anonymous May 26, 2011 at 3:24 pm #

    Thank you, Emma, for your keen eye and pointing that out. Frankly, it wouldn’t surprise us given the highly questionable ethics of any zoo that breeds ligers, which is something we’re critical of here at GlobalAnimal.org. Cross-breeding animals that would never naturally meet to create a spectacle species cubs who must be delivered by C-section with low survival rates and a high incidence of genetic disorders is antithetical to animal welfare and species rehabilitation.We’re with you – if the dog is forcibly positioned and unable to move (e.g., not nurse the hybrid tiger/lion cubs), it should be reported. Thanks again, Emma, for your observation.- Global Animal

  2. Emma May 26, 2011 at 9:13 am #

    ..and I agree – the mother tiger knew that her babies were not as Nature intended and so stopped nurturing them, knowing it would be kinder for them not to live. Ligers are known to suffer greatly due to their unnatural selection http://www.squidoo.com/ligers

  3. Emma May 26, 2011 at 8:11 am #

    Please look closely at the video – the nursing bitch is attached to the floor by a clip on her collar to a metal loop in the floor- she is unable to get up unless someone decides to unclip her. I am so sorry to point this out but feel I must. This video is not what it seems or how the makers would like it to be perceived. Look closely, pause the video and you will see the clips. This sweet dog is a nursing slave and the zoo should be reported for animal cruelty.

    • Profile photo of Global Animal
      Global Animal May 26, 2011 at 8:13 am #

      Thank you, Emma for your keen eye and pointing that out. Frankly, it wouldn’t surprise us given the highly questionable ethics of any zoo that breeds ligers, which is something we’re critical of here at GlobalAnimal.org. Cross-breeding animals that would never naturally meet to create a spectacle species cubs who must be delivered by C-section with low survival rates and a high incidence of genetic disorders is antithetical to animal welfare and species rehabilitation.

      We’re with you – if the dog is forcibly positioned and unable to move (e.g., not nurse the hybrid tiger/lion cubs), it should be reported.

      Thanks again, Emma, for your observation.

      – Global Animal